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Freezer dinners

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hey ladies, 

I'm planning on making a bunch of meals to put into the freezer for after the baby comes. Trouble is, other than a lasagna or two and possibly a few shepherd's pies, I can't think of anything else to make!!!

 

What kinds of meals do you  make and freeze?

post #2 of 10

I wish I had some new ideas for you - I love shepherd's pie and will probably freeze at least 3!

post #3 of 10

Whatever it is, I am making sure I have a good selection. I wound up with 13 lasagnas in the freezer and the sight of lasagna still turns my stomach as I swear that was all we ate in the postpartum period with dd #2. lol

This time I am making up more ingredients than whole meals.

 

As for some examples of what I am stocking my freezer with:

 

diced onions, garlic, peppers, the little 'flavorings' that take time and energy to do and food processors to wash etc

cooked Crumbled ground beef seasoned according to if it is tacos, spaghetti, shepards pie, etc

cooked diced and chopped turkey bacon/beef bacon for add ins of soups, salads

uncooked chicken breasts already marinated that I can just dump in the crockpot

chicken that is cooked and diced for chicken salad, soups, etc.

Pinto beans/refried beans/beans  to throw in for a quick soup

enchilada sauce

hummus

soups that are lacking the potato/rice/noodles (don't want them to get mushy and yucky)

frozen black bean brownies in individual portions and a pan for entertaining

French toast

I will probably have some proccessed food like chicken patties and fish strips in the freezer also for something quick to throw in the oven or as some meaty protein to throw on top of salads etc

I also use TONS of frozen veggies - brussel sprouts, broccoli, so those are a must for quick cooking postpartum (or any time)

frozen fruits

 

 

We eat mostly home cooked meals/salads and a moderate to large amount of dairy (about 6-8 gallons of milk a month for our family, and 5 pounds of cheese, 1 pound cream cheese, 2 pounds sour cream/greek yogurt etc) so really - outside of when we have meat or beans - we have 'back up' meals that aren't really meals but are quick and filling.

Its pretty quick for us to grab a can of black olives, dice some cheese, and fruit and grab a box of crackers and stuff ourselves with that. Or hummus,pitas and veggies instead of crackers.



I plan on making and posting on my fridge 10 different 'snack meals' or quick meals I can throw together for when we are hungry but I have mommy brain. LOL

 

 

 

 

post #4 of 10

Tater-tot casserole and Mexican lasagna (tortillas layered with beef, cheese, beans, etc.)...

 

If I think of anything else I'll come back and add.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Onemore - I love the idea of just doing ingredients instead of whole meals!!! 

DH is a moderately good cook, but he really quickly forgets that our daughter is a super picky eater. I'm terrified that he'll forget to feed her entirely while I'm busy or in the hospital. Or that she's going to survive on apples and cheese alone. :P

post #6 of 10

WIth DS, I did raw meatloafs in mini loaf (throw away) pans.  Pull from the freezer, directly into the oven with a couple potatoes/sweet potatoes (for baked), and 90 minutes later we had dinner ready.  Freeze them in the pans and then bag them up, I think 3 pans fit in a gallon bag - super easy.  Enchiladas without the sauce (to prevent soggy).  I use jarred sauce, so I just made sure I had 1 jar per pan in the pantry, dump and bake.  I did chili-cornbread casserole, and moussaka (both fully cooked, chilled, cut and frozen in portions for easy lunchbox lunches).  I did a couple things of soup, which we wound up not eating (they're still in my freezer actually), so I won't be doing soup again. 

 

You really need to think about how you cook / what you eat.  We don't eat a lot of soup, so it was a bit silly of me to freeze some thinking we would.  We obviously didn't.  I don't do frozen vegetables, so that's also pointless for us.  We had a CSA delivery with DS, so we were still getting our fresh fruits/veggies delivered to our door every week.  This time around I'm going to start the CSA again, to minimize shopping needs, but I'll switch to a "quick prepare box" they offer that is all salads and other produce that doesn't require cooking.  This time around I'll probably also freeze some meats in marinade - that does make life much easier.  But I'll go with roasts and the like - something that I can put in the oven and forget about rather than something that needs attention.  I'm also planning to prepare a case of my oatmeal jars - mixed grains and dried fruits that go into the crockpot and make a week's worth of breakfasts in each jar.  Maybe burger/cutlet patties, since those can be pulled and popped into the pan still frozen. 

 

I've also already started stocking up on fresh pastas.  Things like ravioli freeze pretty well out of the refrigerator case, so when I find a good price I buy some and freeze it.  Sauce doesn't have to be complex (butter and garlic, marinara out of a jar, etc.), and even my DH can do frozen pasta (love him dearly, but he cannot cook).

 

I'm planning to have a food-themed mother's blessing this time around (I didn't get a shower with DS).  The guests will be asked to bring a dish for the freezer in lieu of gifts.  Make sure everything is labeled with preparation instructions, and into the freezer they go.  That way I'll have a variety of dishes I didn't have to make, and things that I normally wouldn't have thought about eating to choose from. 

 

The other big thing I think this time will be freezing bread - probably in half loaves or something so I can pull it out to make sandwiches for DS or round out a dinner or french toast or something.  We're not huge bread eaters, it often goes bad before we get through, but I'm really wanting to minimize my shopping needs this time around so I can spend that time bonding (I went on my weekly grocery shopping trip when DS was 3 days old) and working on BF. 

post #7 of 10

My mom and sister came for a marathon cooking session a few weeks before my DS was born.  It was so fantastic to have the meals or partial meals ready to grab.  I'm sure we made other foods, but this is what I can remember:

meatballs (easy to throw into pasta since DH doesn't consider anything a meal without meat)

turkey noodle casserole (ground turkey, shredded carrots, noodles, cheese sauce)

pulled pork (made in the crockpot and frozen without sauce to use for BBQ pork or fajitas)

meatloaf

ziti casserole (pasta and sausage in a white cheese sauce)

seasoned ground turkey (for tostadas, tacos, etc)

grilled turkey burgers (easy for DH to microwave and make into a meal)

 

I'm loving the other ideas and can't wait to see more. 

 

post #8 of 10

Cristeen, I don't know if you are a sourdough fan, but sourdough (whole wheat or white) freezes really well.  We just defrost it in the toaster oven and it is great with anything....

 

Man, we haven't had a mircowave ever, but I am secretly coveting one.  I like to make homemade freezer burritos with beans, rice and cheese, and wrap them in the tortilla that isn't baked yet.. and then just throw them in the oven.  But when they are frozen they take forever to cook.... like an hour!  I think eating one in 3 minutes sounds better!!!!!

 

I am loving all of the ideas on this list!  I am totally taking notes.  My DH does cook, but having all the dishes from cooking and eating so so hard.  It is easier to not have prep dishes to clean and use paper plates for a few weeks (since our city composts food scraps/paper food waste, I don't feel so guilty). 

 

post #9 of 10

Cristeen - Thanks for the wonderful idea about the CSA! We moved to this area and I didn't even think of looking up CSA because its a coastal small area. But - there was one last year! 28 weeks for $700..Looks like it began mid may and goes until mid november. That would be so wonderful for us. Thanks for the great idea! Going to call them on Monday!

post #10 of 10

Cristeen that is awesome that your CSA has a "quick prepare" box option. That is the hardest thing about our box, the time it takes to cut, chop, blanch, store, etc. My youngest brother is going to be staying with us this summer so perhaps this is a task I could assign to him. :)

 

Onemore, ours is $550 a season and we split it with neighbors, so we pay $275 and get a box every other week. And our insurance pays for $100 of it to encourage healthy eating! Sometimes insurance companies amaze me. Sometimes.

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