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#31 of 55 Old 10-05-2011, 12:03 AM
 
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So we tried 2 of the recipes from Once a Month Mom so far. Both *huge* hits. One is easier to freeze than the other, but they turned out great. I made a bit extra for this recipe http://www.ourbestbites.com/2009/10/dressed-up-sloppy-joes/ since 6 would never feed all of us, then doubled that amount. Made up half for supper that night & just threw all the ingredients in a freezer bag & froze it flat. The freezer instructions say to use a slow cooker, but I just dumped the thawed mix into the frying pan & heated it up.

 

The other one I made is http://www.kevinandamanda.com/recipes/dinner/bacon-cheeseburger-chicken.html I really wasn't sure if people would like it, we've never used teriyaki sauce before, but everyone loved it. We usually buy our chicken frozen, so it was a bit harder to do as a put together freezer meal. The first time I made it, I thawed out the chicken & seared it after cooking an entire package of bacon. Froze half the cooked bacon so the next time I made it, all I had to do was thaw & sear the chicken & throw everything into a pan. Worked great, although I'd imagine if I used fresh chicken, I could easily sear it, put everything on & stick it in the freezer to just throw in the oven when we wanted it.

 

Planned on making the meatloaf as well, but I didn't have enough meat after making 2 lasagnas, 3 shepherd's pies & the 2 sloppy joe mixes.

 

Our big problem right now is being able to get enough variety. Everything except ground beef is so expensive, we can't have carb laden foods a lot or foods with a huge amount of fiber. Been trying to hunt down vegetarian/vegan foods that aren't hugely "out there" from foods we've had before, but I think we're going to have to at least be willing to try eggplant if we want to get more variety without spending a fortune on chicken & better cuts of beef & pork.


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#32 of 55 Old 10-05-2011, 05:56 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devaskyla View Post

 

Our big problem right now is being able to get enough variety. Everything except ground beef is so expensive, we can't have carb laden foods a lot or foods with a huge amount of fiber. Been trying to hunt down vegetarian/vegan foods that aren't hugely "out there" from foods we've had before, but I think we're going to have to at least be willing to try eggplant if we want to get more variety without spending a fortune on chicken & better cuts of beef & pork.



I like to make bean burritos or enchiladas with half meat (I use ground turkey but you can use beef) and half black beans. It cuts down on the amount of meat your using.  Also, you could do veggie stir fries and put it over a whole grain rice, couscous, barley, quinoa etc.  Whole grains have a decent amount of protein and in combination with veggies they make a whole protein.

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#33 of 55 Old 10-05-2011, 12:36 PM
 
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Devaskyla, have you tried tofu? We don't have it in our household b/c my husband makes funny faces at the mere mention of it. eyesroll.gif But long ago I used it (marinated in soy sauce, garlic, ginger) in fried rice. I'm not sure how kids would react to tofu, though. My 2-year-old would probably be heartily amused by its texture but then run away at the first attempt to feed it to him.

 

Speaking of fried rice, that's a great dish to make in a large batch then reheat for many more meals. However, I've never tried freezing it.

 

Actually, I am used to getting on without meat, as it's so expensive here. I often use cheese or egg (usually scrambled bits) in meals as the protein. For instance, I make a potato casserole with potatoes (obviously), vegetables, and cheese. Also, tortellini (and other stuffed noodle types) with cheese and spinach is good, and my son loves it.

 

Like Marinwoo, I like burritos. They have a lot of protein, which has saved me this pregnancy whenever I was feeling drained or low energy. I make them with beans, cheese, onions, and lettuce wrapped in the tortilla. My husband likes to also add ground beef mixed with spicy sauce to his.

 

Can you freeze macaroni and cheese?

 

I actually don't have any frozen meal ideas. We have a freezer the size of a mailbox, so it's a slight logistical problem. winky.gif Still, I'm reading the thread for regular meal ideas.


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#34 of 55 Old 10-05-2011, 03:11 PM
 
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Quote:

 

Speaking of fried rice, that's a great dish to make in a large batch then reheat for many more meals. However, I've never tried freezing it.

 

 


If you make "plain" fried rice (brown or white rice, bits of veggie, soy sauce) it freezes/reheats well. Tofu and scrambled egg have a weird texture after being frozen and we're vegetarian, so I'm not sure about adding meat/seafood.

 

Bean and rice or breakfast burritos freeze well and reheat nicely. I pretty much lived off these and home-canned lentil soup after DS was born.

 

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#35 of 55 Old 11-08-2011, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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How are you all doing with this?  I'm less ambitious than I was initially, but I'm starting to feed the freezer.

 

So far, I have:

 

3 nights of chilli

2 nights of burritos

1 night of mac and cheese

 

I'm going to try and get at least 20 meals done, so I have some work to do on this.


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#36 of 55 Old 11-08-2011, 04:54 PM
 
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I'm not doing so well... I am pretty good at making the extra and putting it in the freezer but not so good at leaving it there :) I have been eating my stash when i'm too exhausted to make something!

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#37 of 55 Old 11-08-2011, 06:40 PM
 
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i am gonna throw out my recommendation for these- sweet potato and black bean empanadas.  i've made a few batches of them already.  the recipe is easy to veganize, too.  i made mine with a gluten-free crust.  they freeze and reheat really well, and like you, marinwoo, i've snuck one or two of them out of the freezer here or there.  winky.gif   i really like the filling- it feels substantial, and it tastes delicious.  nutrient-packed, too!

 

i'm so grateful that we were able to nurse our big chest freezer along with a mini-generator during the extended power-outage.  i've got it almost filled  Bolt.gifand i'd have been really sad to lose all that food and work.


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#38 of 55 Old 11-09-2011, 07:06 AM
 
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I'm still at the point where I have nothing but ideas regarding this, heh.  There's a couple of servings of soup in my freezer right now, leftover from dinners we've had recently... but I'm mostly taking my leftovers with me to work for lunch there so my freezer stash isn't increasing in that method really.


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#39 of 55 Old 11-09-2011, 08:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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HardCoreMom, those look really good.

 

I bought a bunch of plastic to go things and have just been cooking twice as much as normal to feed the freezer.  It's a pretty easy thing and on the weekends I'm making huge amounts of things.  Last weekend I made a massive pot of chilli and this week I'll do the same with goulash.


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#40 of 55 Old 11-15-2011, 07:11 AM
 
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Originally Posted by L'lee View Post


This time, I'll probably make several kinds of soup, chili, taco fillings (guacamole, pre-cooked and seasoned beef, then it is easy to make canned refried beans with salsa, cheese and green chiles mixed in the evening of the meal), veggie burgers, quiche, desserts/cookies/muffins, stuffed mushrooms, twice baked potatoes, pulled pork, waffles, bread, red beans & rice, runzas, calzones, pizza dough, etc. Phew! As I said, I'll definitely start MUCH earlier this time! It helps that I have a big freezer in the garage now, also.


I'm thankful for this thread! I was just trying to remember what I was planning on making, and then I realized I'd put a list on here!

 

We keep eating things I've stored, but I'm OK with that - we're rotating stock! We usually do that anyways, so I'm really just trying to have extra stuff stored from usual. I will probably buy some things, too, like more (GF) pizza dough, which I can use for calzones and runzas, and guac.

 

So far, I have lots of chili (about 8 pts?), about 4 other pts of soup, another 4 pts of curried veggies (and chicken?), a couple of balls of pizza dough, misc muffins, 8 twice baked potato halves.

 

Need to make (more): misc soups, seasoned ground beef, veggie burgers, quiche (?), pumpkin muffins, stuffed mushrooms, pulled pork, waffles, cajun red beans, runzas, calzones

 

Oh, yeah, and trail mix! My early nursing treat. :)


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#41 of 55 Old 11-15-2011, 07:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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You're making Runzas!? 

 

When my DD was born, my mom had a dozen of the real ones frozen when she came to see me!  It was the best post-partum gift ever!!!

 

 

Well, we've added three more dinners.  DH made a huge thing of goulash.  I've found that just using ziploc freezer bags to freeze meals works really well.


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#42 of 55 Old 11-15-2011, 08:04 AM
 
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Ooh....Runzas!  Now I know what to ask people to bring, post-partum!  Thanks!


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#43 of 55 Old 11-15-2011, 01:52 PM
 
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Ha ha! No problem! Glad to give you both the idea!

 

I'd never heard of runzas, but then my sister brought the recipe (she got from her MIL) when she came to stay with us for a week shortly after DS was born. We made a whole bunch of them and they were so yummy!

 

I'm not sure if I make them "authentically", but basically I saute onions, cabbage, and ground beef and/or turkey and/or sausage, mix in some bouillon granules, salt, pepper, relish, horseradish, and mustard to taste, and then I wrap it by spoonfuls in rolled out pieces of pizza dough. I freeze them like that (on a tray first, then I put them in ziplocks) and bake them when we're going to eat them. I probably make about 50 or so each time so they last for a while!


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#44 of 55 Old 11-15-2011, 06:04 PM
 
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I'm not getting much saved in the freezer for after the birth, but I didn't really think I would. I have a family of huge eaters & even a 16cu ft freezer doesn't hold enough food for the months, much less have room for a lot of extras. I'm working out systems to make it easier to have lots of food frozen (mostly ground beef, much to dh's annoyance, but it's the cheapest meat we can find) so hopefully I'll have done a big batch shortly before baby is born. If not, dh cooks & get groceries.

 

At the moment the only things I have in the freezer that I consider as 'after baby food' is 2 deep dish pie shells filled with leftover turkey & gravy. We'll just top them with mashed potato & cook some veggies to go with them. I'll probably do at least a couple more from Christmas too.


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#45 of 55 Old 11-15-2011, 07:01 PM
 
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Runzas freeze well?!?!?!?!! I've been eating them all my life and have NEVER(to my knowledge) eaten one that wasn't fresh. I'm stoked to make some to freeze as they are a family favorite. Do you freeze them before or after baking? Also do you allow them to rise again after filling but before freezing?

 

In other news...Gathering the things I need for root veggie stew. Gonna can a couple of quarts and eat the rest. We've got lentil soup, veggie chili, and white bean soup put up already. Wanting to do the veggie stew and maybe some pasta sauce in jars and then some baked goods and two-three casseroles before babe exits the cave.

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#46 of 55 Old 11-16-2011, 06:21 PM
 
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I make them gluten free and don't let them rise much, but you could probably do it either way. I would probably let them rise before freezing, and then you could cook them from frozen if you wanted to . I usually just freeze them raw, because I've found that if I cook them and then freeze them, it takes about the same amount of time to reheat them as it would to just cook them from raw. On the other hand, if you let them rise, then cook them most of the way, that would work, too. I've done it both ways and it was fine. They might not be quite as fresh as non-frozen, but I think they're pretty good! I'd love to hear what you think if you try!


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#47 of 55 Old 12-02-2011, 08:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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How are you all doing with this? I think we have about 10 meals put away right now.  I've been trying to just make twice as much dinner and freeze half. 

 

 


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#48 of 55 Old 12-03-2011, 12:02 AM
 
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My freezer meals for after birth will mostly be done in late December/early January. We generally eat out of the freezer, so it's full of food for the next few weeks at the moment. Just hope I have the energy to make a bunch of stuff after Christmas.


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#49 of 55 Old 12-03-2011, 02:10 AM
 
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This is the first time I've ever stocked a freezer before a birth (or ever!) Now that I'm planning this out, I'm wondering why the heck it's taken me years to realize I should always double my recipes and freeze for nights/mornings when I'm exhausted. hammer.gif So far I've put up 40 pumpkin muffins. I'm making about the same amount of blueberry muffins today. Then I'm making lots and lots of casseroles, muffins, waffles, cookie dough and soups. I'm going to pick one thing for each day these next two weeks and double (maybe even triple and use the 3rd for dinner for that particular night) each recipe. 

 

ABOUT Enchiladas---I've never frozen tortillas before. Do they hold up well in the freezer and come out good once they are out of the oven?? Same thing with Chicken and dumplings. I don't know how to freeze that dish---anyone know?

 

Here's my list: 

 

MAKING FOR FREEZER:

Turkey Chili- on the mild side so it doesn't bother baby too much

Chicken Soup

Creamy Chicken Soup

Minestrone Soup

Vegetable Lasagna- kale, broccoli and shredded zucchini

Chicken Enchiladas (see above ?)

Mac & Cheese with broccoli

Breakfast muffins: eggs, cheese & sausage

Meatloaf "Muffins"

Baked Ziti

Chicken and Dumplings ( see above ?)

Cookie Dough--Oatmeal ChocoChip and Lactation Cookies

Muffins--banana and maybe cornbread ones (to go with the chili)

Waffles

 

BUYING for freezer:

Local Manicotti

Pizzas

Applegate Chix nuggets- I love these!

Local Chicken Pot Pie

Bagels

Dinner rolls

Chicken breakfast sausage

Sprouted english muffins 

Bread- a few loaves for when we run out of it and need it ASAP to make kids' lunches and such

Frozen fruit for smoothies

Applegate Turkey burgers

Local Meatballs

Burger Buns

 


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#50 of 55 Old 12-03-2011, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Nice list Kindermama.  I have no idea how they'll turn out, but I just rolled a pan of enchiladas and froze it.  Most of what I'm making will need to be thawed and then just baked. 

 

So far, I have frozen:

 

sweet potato cottage pie (yum!!!)

mac and cheese

several things of chilli

beef stew

turkey pasta bake

several things of goulash

 

I'm going to add a curry today.  Does rice freeze well?

 

I also plan on making a couple of quiches and maybe some pot pies or chicken and dumplings.  I don't know if the dumplings would freeze well either.  I also put them at the last minute, so I'm inclined to say no.  Maybe I'll just freeze the soup and have DH add the dumplings like I normally do.  

 


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#51 of 55 Old 12-03-2011, 10:37 AM
 
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I'll probably make a couple lasagnas. They were awesome with ds3. We had one for supper the night he was born. Much more filling than the canned chili we had after ds2 because we needed to eat something & had nothing decent. I might do a couple of shepherd's pies as well. Dh is having blood sugar issues, so everything is up in the air right now. I think we're going to end up having to go low grain, at the very least. Sucky, most of our food involves rice, pasta or bread.

 

I found this great site http://onceamonthmom.com/ that has meal plans & a one day cooking plan to make a whole bunch of freezer meals for a month. It' s really extensively detailed. Most months I only like a couple of the things listed, but there's also a page for designing your own plan. If I ever get any energy, I might put all the ones I like together & start doing that...after it cools off. lol We love being able to just throw stuff in the oven, but we'd really like to move away from so much processed crap, so having loads of our own homemade freezer meals would be ideal. Doing all that cooking in one day would probably kill me, though. Might spread it out to a couple days.


being diabetic doesn't mean you have to eliminate carbs. It means controlled carbs through out the day so he can eat pasta, rice, breads etc. whole grains, whole wheat and brown rice are better and lentils sweet potatoes, and squashes are good in moderation so you can do these meals but try to amp up the non starchy veggies and lean protein. I live with sugar issues and still enjoy many foods just in moderation.

 

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#52 of 55 Old 12-03-2011, 07:55 PM
 
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Kindermama, great list! 

 

I made crepes last time, and that didn't work out so well, but hopefully enchiladas will be different for you. Could you shape and freeze just the filling, then put it in the tortilla later?

 

As far as chicken and dumplings, I assume you add the dumplings toward the end of cooking - could you freeze them separately then put them together when you reheat them to eat? That is what I'm doing with my home made pot pies, I put the veggie, chicken, sauce mix in the containers to freeze and then bake (glass Pyrex), then I made and shaped the dough for the top and wrapped it in wax paper, then put foil over that and the pot pie to keep them together in the freezer. I'll combine them when I bake them.

 

I'm getting a bunch of baking and cooking done, little by little! It feels great, but I'm running out of freezer space! Need to eat some of the older stuff to make more room...


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#53 of 55 Old 12-03-2011, 08:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by L'lee View Post

...

 

So far, I have lots of chili (about 8 pts?), about 4 other pts of soup, another 4 pts of curried veggies (and chicken?), a couple of balls of pizza dough, misc muffins, 8 twice baked potato halves.

 

Need to make (more): misc soups, seasoned ground beef, veggie burgers, quiche (?), pumpkin muffins, stuffed mushrooms, pulled pork, waffles, cajun red beans, runzas, calzones

 

Oh, yeah, and trail mix! My early nursing treat. :)


So far: chili, curried veggies and chicken, clam chowder, pizza dough, muffins (corn, blueberry, pumpkin, cranberry), seasoned ground beef, a little quiche, waffles, trail mix

 

Plan to make: more waffles, veggie burgers, Cajun red beans, runzas, guacamole

 

Maybe make: more soups, more quiche, stuffed mushrooms, pulled pork, calzones or pizza

 

Getting there!


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#54 of 55 Old 12-05-2011, 11:13 AM
 
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mmm.. clam chowder! Thanks, L'lee :) I don't live anywhere near the sea, but now I want some clam chowder!!

 

If it's any help for the tortilla topic, I make tortillas and freeze them all the time (homemade flour ones and corn ones from a tortilleria). DH is from Mexico and he can't tell the frozens ones from the fresh ones that have been in the fridge and re-heated (there's nothing like a freshly made one, though- even I can tell the difference in those). I've never frozen them as burritos or enchiladas, but I think they would be fine!

 

So far I've got some chili, white chicken chili, stew, chicken spaghetti casserole, a couple of par-baked pizza doughs, fruit-filled empanadas and some cookies frozen. I'm still planning on freezing some more empanadas, waffles and muffins for breakfast; some tortillas, taco meat, hamburger meat and sauce (for the pizza), and chicken for lunch/dinner; and trail mix, granola bars, and more cookies for snacks. Hopefully this week/weekend will be more productive than last :) I feel like time is running out fast...


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#55 of 55 Old 12-05-2011, 06:42 PM
 
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Here's the recipe I used if you want to try it! : http://fireandsalt.blogspot.com/2009/11/gluten-free-clam-chowder.html

 

I made a few changes used cream but skipped the milk (we like it thick, and it's more efficient to freeze it without even if you do want it - just add when you reheat). Regular flour would probably be fine to sub for the GF flour. I also add a bag of frozen corn with the clams, 'cause I like it to be clan and corn chowder. Or you could just buy a can. :) I make it from scratch because all of the canned varieties contain gluten as far as I can tell, and I missed it.

 

Got some supplies today to make lasagnes to freeze! I have NO clue where I'm going to find space in the freezer for those! LOL! Guess we'll have to eat some stuff!

 


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