Help A Girl Out! Let’s Talk Freezer Meals!!!!

30 09 2011

Hello my fabulous, ever faithful readers!  I come to you, desperate for help!   I’m sorry to say that blogging and cooking (GASP!)  have taken a backseat to my #1 job right now…grad student.  But I need your help!

Last night I had an epiphany.  As I drove to the Penn Station (East Coast Subs..not the ACTUAL Penn Station) by our house to pick up dinner…again….I knew something had to be done.  Mr. Amanda and I are both swamped right now (him with work, me with school).  Any time for anything other than sleeping and work is VERY limited.  It’s so limited that recently, on the nights that we’ve both been home (which isn’t often), we’ve simply had takeout or fast food.  Pure disgust!  So, after making that drive for takeout AGAIN last night, I knew something had to change.  So, the plan?  Freezer meals.  The problem?  I know nothing about freezing meals :-) That’s where you, my awesome readers come in!  I know nothing about how to freeze meals–do they get cooked first, then re-heated?  Or just mixed together, frozen, and cooked when you pull it out of the freezer?  What freezes well, what doesn’t?  See my dilemma?  I need answers!  I have a large freezer, I have frozen things before (we freeze meat, breads, etc, OFTEN)….but entire meals are foreign to me!

So, I’m begging for answers.  Obviously, if you’ve read many of my blogs you know that I don’t like to follow recipes exactly (it’s a character flaw), but with a little guidance (and answers to the questions), maybe I can make some fabulous, healthy and delicious freezer meals……that I can eventually share with you :-)

 

HELLLLPPPPPPPPPP!!!!!!

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5 responses

30 09 2011
jennyfer

Lasagna, enchiladas, soups and stews are great for freezing! Cook them first the aluminum pans then sick them in the freezer. With the soups and stew after cooked, store them flat in plastic freezer bags! Happy cooking :o)

2 10 2011
Linda Travis Steele

I just did 9 different recipes of casseroles and soups that I froze for my sister who is a teacher and her family and at the same time did it for my husband and myself. I don’t cook the casseroles. You can stick them in the frig to thaw and then heat as you would normally when cooking them right after you make them. I also use the disposable aluminum pans. I like to put parchment paper on top of the casserole and then foil. I take a marker and write on the top what it is and the temp and time to cook it. I have several recipes that I am more than willing to share with you if you like. Just let me know.

10 10 2011
Pam Brown

Hi, Yes to Jennyfer’s suggestions above. I was a deli and catering manager for many years so I know what freezes well and what doesn’t.
Most meals will freeze pretty well. Entrees or side dishes with potatoes don’t do all that well. The potatoes just don’t “revive” well sometimes depending on what they are in. They can come back watery. A few in a soup will always be ok.
Meatloaf, sloppy joe sauce, taco meat or cooked chicken freeze well, (You can always grab a cooked chicken from the supermarket deli and just make that into good sandwiches. Or throw some of the chicken on top of bagged salad mix. (I really pretty much hate bagged salad mix, but millions of Americans can’t be wrong or they wouldn’t sell the stuff) Baked Spaghetti Rocks and is much easier to make if you don’t feel like dealing with the “Lasagne Process”! Bake it and cut into squares for an easy/yummy meal.

I love to make a batch of “Polish Mistakes” (you can Google or Bing the recipes if you don’t already make them. Sausage, ground beef and cheese on cocktail rye). These little things are SO good! You can pull out just as many as you want from a Ziploc in the freezer and pair them with a salad or a can of green beans. (Freeze them first in a single layer on a cookie sheet and then put them in the bags) Or we just love them as a snack. Bake them in a toaster oven or a regular oven until crisp and bubbly. You CAN bake all of them first and then re-heat in the micro but those aren’t nearly as good that way.

Nothing with mayo or celery freezes well but almost any casserole should be fine. Always try to let soups and stews completely cool in the frig before attempting to freeze. And don’t re-freeze anything that has already gone through the thawing process.

I’m not a fan of the microwave at all. So I like to let things thaw a day or two in the frig and then re-heat in a saucepan or toaster oven depending on what it is.

Hope this helps!

Pam

13 12 2011
Pat

Here is a blog with some good information about once a month cooking also.

13 12 2011
Pat

Well it would have been better had I actually pasted the url in the last post.

http://www.frugalmom.net/blog/in-the-kitchen/freezer-cooking-in-the-kitchen/7-steps-to-once-a-month-cooking/

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