Freezer Meal Thread — The Bump
March 2018 Moms

Freezer Meal Thread

*stolen from February* 

I never made meals ahead of time with my daughter but looking back, I wish I had. We spent wayyyyyy too much money ordering food because I could barely stand long enough to cook a meal. We all love talking about food here, so let’s talk our favorite make ahead, stick in the freezer meals!

Re: Freezer Meal Thread

  • Lasagna, spaghetti sauces, chili, pot pies, casseroles. Just nothing containing potatoes because I don't find they freeze well.
  • I have tons of pre freeze meals ideas from Pinterest. Prepare everything fresh, freeze and drop in a crockpot. I love this idea. I know March will be slowly getting into warmer weather however that doesn't mean crockpot shredded chicken for tacos, salads etc isn't out of the question. The ideas are rolling. Thank you for the ideas!
    First time Momma praying for a safe and healthy arrival. 
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  • Love this thread! I need to think before I can actually contribute ideas but I’m definitely up for sharing ideas here!
  • @heatherdubrow that’s actually a really good idea. I’ve noticed lately a lot of the food I’ve been making recently has “make ahead” options where they tell you when to stop the cooking process and stick it in the freezer if you’re cooking for later. I’ll have to start paying attention to which recipes do that! 
  • Ok probably a stupid questions over here, but I've never done freezer meals before. What's the best way to store them for the freezer? Freezer bags, Tupperware, etc? I definitely want to prepare lots of meals ahead of time to have on standby!
  • @stlbuckeye132  I have a good saver so I use that, but otherwise I would just use freezer bags! You lay them flat at first in the freezer until frozen then you can stack them to save space.
  • Great thread! Lasagna, homemade pasta sauce, homemade strawberry jam, coconut bread, chicken wings, and salsa are my "go to" let's make extra and freeze this items. Froze brisket once and that worked well too. Our freezer in our rental is small and we are actually in the market to get a big extra one soon in order to make more freezer meals to eat post birth. 

    @stlbuckeye132 It depends on what you're freezing. For jam, sauce, salsa, broth, and brisket, I use glass jars (usually re-used from something I bought from Costco)--leave a bit of air in in case whatever it is expands. For lasagna I use a tin foil disposable lasagna pan wrapped in more tin foil. For chicken wings and coconut bread I use ziplocks. 
    Me: 34 H: 37
    Dating: 2003 Married: 2010
    TTC #1: Started April 2016
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  • Do y’all find that it’s cheaper to make lasagna from scratch or just to buy it? It’s always one of the first things people tell me when I ask about freezer meals but why wouldn’t I just buy the premade frozen lasagnas from the store? I’ve made lasagna from scratch before, but I didn’t pay enough attention to know if it saved me money. 
  • I enlisted the help of my parents to make some things - they came from out of state and knocked out a ton of meals while I was in the hospital. I definitely recommend asking for help with this if you have parents or family members, friends, whatever that like to cook. My mom was so excited to feel "needed" and that she was doing something actually helpful. Anyway, some of my favorites they made were: 

    Big batches of ground beef and taco meat frozen in 1lb servings
    Chicken pot pie (my favorite) 
    Chicken breasts (uncooked) in a freezer bag with marinade that DH could just throw on the grill
    Breakfast burritos and egg mcmuffin style sandwiches 
    Casseroles: tater tot, tuna and noodles, cheesy broccoli chicken & noodles

    This time I'm going to make some smoothie packs: freeze yogurt in ice cube trays, then put a few cubes of yogurt with chopped fruit/veggies in a zip lock and freeze.  I'd like to make a few batches of lactation cookies and energy balls and freeze those too.

    Pinterest has a TON of recipes and tips. 
    BabyFruit Ticker

  • I have never been crazy about the way freezer meals tasted whenever I tried them. For my previous kids, I had bought a lot of meat (thin sliced chicken breasts and thin pork chops mainly), portioned them into ziplocks and marinated then tossed in the freezer. I also stocked up on steam fresh frozen veggies. I would always have a few ziplocks of meat ready to go in the fridge and would just cook the meat and toss a bag of frozen veggies in the microwave when I was hungry. 

    My MIL also sends a lot of food over (mostly DH and the kids eat that- but I am very grateful because I can just focus on myself and getting back to my normal eating habits.) I lose the weight quicker when I am only focusing on what I have to eat and not having to make for everyone.

    @ashleyf911 I like that idea about the smoothie bags, I may need to try that.
    BabyFetus Ticker
  • @heatherdubrow I’ve been wanting a food saver forever. Do you love it?? Which kind do you have? 
  • @isntthatspeshul my mom got me the giant fancy 2 in 1 food saver. It has Tupperware containers to use as well as vacuum seal bags. I love it! The Tupperware containers keep food so fresh! It is really big so I store it in the pantry though.
  • @JBcakes08 I’ve made all of those! The lasagna roll ups and the maple Dijon chicken are both wonderful. 
  • @JBcakes08 All of those meals look SO GOOD.  Thank you for sharing - I'm definitely planning on making these all!
  • Great ideas here!

    I just made something that I think would freeze really well. 

    Ground sausage
    Spiral pasta, bc it's all I had
    Bell peppers
    Looooots of cheese

    It tastes amazing and I would freeze it if I wasn't certain we will devour it in next 10 minutes. 
  • @stlbuckeye132 @isntthatspeshul We LOVE our foodsaver and plan on putting it to good use next year. We have the FoodSaver® V3240 Vacuum Sealing System.
    Me: 36    DH: 37
    Married: 5.27.16
    Baby Boy Due: 3.18.18
    Babysizer Cravings Pregnancy Tracker

  • Not trying to be negative but I did freezer meals with #1 and ended up throwing most of them away because I never wanted to eat them. They just didn't taste as good as making it fresh. If you don't like them now you won't want them then. 
    I feel like grocery shopping ahead for meats and frozen veg is a better option but to each their own.
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  • I love this thread!  I was talking to my mom over the weekend and asked her if she would help me come up with ideas/make some of the food because this time around I want to have a nice stock of freezer meals, hopefully healthier options.  After DD was born we moved a month later so we didn't have very much in the freezer and 2 weeks after DS was born we closed on our house and moved in (it has become a running joke in my family that we always move after having another child, not this time!)

    I'm loving these ideas and I appreciate that they're healthy because last time, between moving and having a then 3 yr old and not having anything pre-made I didn't eat that healthy and I also probably didn't eat enough and my supply suffered because of it.  I'm going to be referencing this thread a lot in January/February and if I find anything good I definitely will share!

  • We will be continuing to Blue Apron.  The meals don't take long to cook, it's usually just one or two pans, and they send all the groceries.  Our freezer is for ice cream and toddler food :)
    ***March '18 October Siggy Challenge: Halloween Costume Fails***

  • I made I think 36 meals last time, and it was the BEST decision of my life!!!!!! It seriously lasted us like 7 months because we'd have lots of leftovers, DH would BBQ randomly, and we also ate some fresh stuff in there. Haha! I was so sad when we ran out of meals and I actually had to cook again.

    My favourites were things I had fully cooked ahead of time, and then threw in the freezer. So when I was pulling them out, it was literally to reheat and serve, no actual cooking required. This was great on the days that I forgot to pull something out to thaw in the morning. So I made a lot of slow cooker meals while pregnant. We'd eat some of it for supper and freeze the rest! Then pop it in the oven completely frozen and it would thaw and be ready to serve!

    Examples: Spaghetti sauce (for sloppy joe's or spaghetti), beef stew, chicken stew, chicken cacciatore

    Other things I made: Lasagna, tuna casserole, shepherd's pie, quiche, lazy perogies, chicken and broccoli casserole

    I also made some muffins, banana bread, scones. Things that were quick to grab and eat for the morning or snack on when I was hungry while breastfeeding!

    Definitely going to start making some meals once third trimester starts. If I can make even 2 a week, that'll give me like 25-30 for when baby comes! Woohoo!
  • edited November 2017
    Adding: I found my old list that I made last time. I made 2 of each of these.

    Tuna casserole
    Beef stew and biscuits
    Cheeseburger casserole
    Shepherds pie
    Chicken stew and biscuits
    Chicken and broccoli noodle casserole
    Tater tot casserole
    Beef stroganoff
    Loaded potato and chicken casserole
    Turkey meatballs
    Meat sauce (for spaghetti or sloppy joes)
    Chicken, wild rice and broccoli casserole
    Chicken cacciatore
    Hashbrown casserole
    Chicken divan

    Carrot muffins
    Cinnamon buns
    Cinnamon loaf
    Pumpkin loaf
    Pumpkin muffins
    Banana bread
    Quiche (for breakfast)

  • @megpeg- I’m with you.  It doesn’t taste the same and my husband doesn’t like it.  I had a meal plan for 3 weeks and the groceries bought minus fresh stuff in advance with low prep meals.  I’m not a big fan of cooking, but had DH run me to the store while he waited in the car with the kids so I could grab fresh ingredients the first few weeks on his day off.  However, I’m looking into grocery delivery service this time around!
  • I'm with @megpeg and never used my freezer meals, but we are not big freezer people and the grocery store is 10 minutes away. I bought a few trader Joe's pasta freezer things which I used more often. Also, I liked having an excuse to go to the store, it gave me a reason to get baby and I out of the house, but totally my personal preference!
  • Kimmie4422Kimmie4422 member
    edited December 2017
    *Removed for TOU Violation*
  • @Kimmie4422 you posted the exact same thing in the Feb bmb, in which you were already told you’d be reported for spam. We’re not here for you to advertise your blog to us. 
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