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Fast {Freezer} Foods

Whether you live by yourself, or you have a full family on the go, you probably have moments where you need some food – and FAST!  But if you’re anything like me, you’re not interested in passing through the drive thru to get some greasy, chemical-filled burger and fries (that never decompose).  Peter and I have a super busy life, and although I mostly stick to my menu plan, sometimes things just come up and we end up getting home half an hour before we have to leave again!  Those are the nights where have some fast {freezer} food words well! In the last couple of weeks I spent a Saturday putting together some items that I can grab on the go and make a good, healthy, nutritious, but FAST dinner out of!   So moving on from my rambling, here are the recipes:

1. Homemade Meatballs

What you will need:

  • 2 lbs. thawed ground beef (or turkey, chicken, etc.)
  • 2 cups of oatmeal
  • 4-5 tbsps. of various spices (I used chili powder, cumin, basil, oregano, salt, pepper, garlic salt, etc.)
  • 2 eggs

Mix all of the above together, and form into meatball-sized balls, and place them on a baking sheet.  Bake at 350F for 30 mins. until they’re cooked.  You can also cook them with a sauce, which is what I do.  My sauce is as follows:

  • 1 3/4 cups maple syrup, honey OR molasses
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard powder

Mix the sauce, pour over the meatballs and then cook them.  Once the meatballs are done, allow them to cool.  Transfer them to another baking sheet (without the sauce!) and put them in your freezer to cool.  Allowing the meatballs to freeze on cookie sheets (or something similar) makes sure that when you bag them up they don’t stick together in a big clump! Once they’re frozen individually, bag them, label them, and leave them for later!  Then you just have to warm them in the oven or on the stove top and eat them!   Quick!  To make the meatballs only took 40 mins. which includes the cooking time.  Not bad!  This recipe gave me 41 meatballs.

2. Pizza Bites

I took this recipe and I adapted it to our tastes.  It’s basically like making one big cinnamon roll but with pizza flavours instead!  I used ground beef, a zesty tomato sauce, olives and tons of mozarella cheese.  And to make life even easier, I used my bread machine to make the dough!  We didn’t cook them right away, but once they were assembled, I froze them on a baking sheet in the freezer.  Then I transferred them to ziploc baggies and put them back in the freezer.  My husband ate some this week for lunch, and all he had to do was take them out and let them thaw a bit and baked them at 475F for 12 mins.  They’re perfect for a quick lunch or dinner!

3. Cooked Beans

Having cooked beans on hand is one of the simplest ways to get protein into a meal.  I like to soak enough chickpeas or black beans over night so that I can fill a crock pot the next morning.  I put them in the crock pot with fresh water covering them, and turn it on high for 6-8 hours.  Then they’re all cooked!  Drain them, and bag them up in individual portions for your family size, and they’ll be quick to throw in a soup, make a curry, or eat as a snack.

4. Burritos

And what better way to use your beans than to prep some burritos??  I like to make homemade tortillas, and then fill them up with mexican seasoned ground beef or beans, salsa, and lots of cheese!  Roll them up and freeze them individually on baking sheets.  Then put them all in a bag in your freezer and they’re good to go when you need to grab something on a rushed night.  Here is how Life as Mom makes freezer burritos.

How do you handle dinner on a rushed day?

Category: Kitchen Tips, Lunch, Main Dishes, Menu Plans, Organization, Snacks, Vegetarian

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4 Responses

  1. Im so glad you left me a comment; otherwise, I would have not found your blog. I love the simplicity of your meals – you are my kind of cook. I too, love making beans in the crock-pot and package them for the freezer. I used to hate beans, but now I love them because I control the firmness and flavor. Oh, one more thing…I could not figure out how to subscribe to your blog. Can you direct me to a link for email updates?

  2. Melissa says:

    WOW! I am going to do ALL of these!! Probably today! :) Thanks again Alison.

  3. Anna says:

    Hmm. I haven’t done a freezer meal in forever. I guess it’s because my feezer is so full of meat and berries from all the great summer sales. I really like the pizza one. I’ll have to give that one a try. Thanks!

  4. Shonda says:

    These look very doable and easy!

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