Friday, March 28, 2014

freezer meals

For Valentine's Day, Ryan surprised me with an upright freezer for our basement!

Whoop whoop!

He's so romantic ;0) 

I've actually been wanting it was the perfect gift! I was insistent that he didn't need to get me anything for V-Day since we just came off what felt like a big Christmas and with the baby coming {and needing lots} I just didn't think getting each other gifts was necessary. It was a sweet surprise!

Soooo....the idea {and push} for the extra cold space was for all kinds of meals I was going to make before the baby comes.... 

I had already doubled a few recipes and got the extras in the freezer, but last night Ryan helped me get a big load at the grocery store and this morning I made 16 more to add!! Most are crock pot meals in bags.

I know some people do this all the time, but not me! It was a first and I think a success! 

Here are my 2 beginner tips:
1) Do all the food shopping the day before food prep. Doing everything all on one day would be exhausting!
2) Write the name of the meal and cooking instructions on the freezer bags the night before {again, doesn't make the actual work day feel SO bad}

Some of the recipes = 2 meals/bags and others just 1.  

Here are the meals w/ links that I decided to try. Most of the recipes I found on Pinterest! I picked and chose what looked good and simple from a lot of pre-made freezer meal lists:

3) Goulash  {2 8x8 pans}
7) Teriyaki Chicken  {2 bags}
8) Sausage & Peppers {2 bags}
9) Baked Pasta {my recipe}
10) Salsa Chicken {my recipe: chxn breasts + jar of salsa} 

It took me about 3 hours from start to finish {not including grocery shopping the night before}. The last meal {goulash} needed the macaroni cooked and meat browned - that added a bit of time, but I had extra macaroni and ended up getting a bonus meal out of it!! 

I didn't take any pictures of the prep or progress because I was too busy working! BUT to prove this isn't all made up just to make myself feel good, here's a picture of my meals in the freezer...
The Bagel Bites were a Costco request from Ryan -- I enjoyed about 6 today at lunch! haha SO good :)

I plan to double a couple more of our favorite recipes and add a few more meals to my stash. All of these recipes are new and we'll be trying for the first time when they're cooked in a few months. Hoping there are some winners in here ;0) 
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Bethany said...

Made the Goulash tonight and the whole family devoured it! Thanks for the link. I haven't eaten that since I was a kid:) Oh and I LOVE my upright freezer. It's a great investment for a growing family. And lastly, WOW 16 meals...that is impressive! I don't think I have ever had that many prepared before giving birth. You will be so glad you have them.

Kelsey Winter said...

I don't freeze a lot of meals, but one of my favorites is Chicken Enchilada Pasta ( It makes enough for 2 meals, so we can eat half for dinner and freeze the rest. For freezing, don't add the cheese or sour cream until you reheat it. We also like it over rice.

So excited for you and Ryan as you're getting close to welcoming your little man! I can't wait to find out what his name is!

Erin and Ryan said...

Bethany - I'm so glad to hear that the goulash is good! Can't wait to try it :)

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