Need some easy freezer meal recipes

So you all know how I’ve posted stories about my mil on NAR. Well we found out that she needs to have surgery. She’s not someone who likes to prepare so I thought I’d step up and start getting some freezer ideas for when she has surgery and won’t be cooking. This way it can go right into the oven since my husband and I will still be working. (She lives with us)

Anyway I need things that can be made in big batches. I’m already planning on making a bunch of chicken croquettes and lasagna rollups. Those are both big winners in the house. If anyone has some recipes for stuff that can just be dumped into a crock pot without any prep that would be good too. No mushrooms please - I’m the only one who likes them.

She’s going to be out of commission for around 3 months (shoulder surgery).

Thank you in advance. I’m in the US if that makes a difference.

ETA the surgery probably won’t happen until next year so I have time.

I think most kind of stews freeze up very well

Curries are good too.

If you want to freeze sides, like rice, it’s better to do it separately, that way it won’t get mushy

Can post some of my favorite stews later :slight_smile:

2 Likes

Thank you. :slight_smile:

This is good served hot or cold, for a meal or as a snack.

Cottage Cheese Egg Bake

10 eggs
1 pint cottage cheese
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup unsifted flour
1 pound shredded Sonoma Jack or Monterrey Jack cheese
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat eggs and add remaining ingredients. Bake in buttered 9" quiche dishes or 9x13" baking dish. Bake for 35 minutes or until eggs are firm and inserted knife comes out clean. Cool, cut into serving sizes. Wrap in cling film and freeze.

You can substitute almost any cheese if you don’t care for Jack.

Something we try to keep in our freezer is boneless chicken breasts poached in tea. Instant chicken sandwiches. We also keep a bag of pre-cooked meatballs, and containers of chicken soup, with matzo balls in a separate container.

Do you have a family chili recipe?

We actually just had some and there’s leftover in the freezer. Maybe I’ll have her make a couple of big batches. She’s not incapacitated yet. Lol

My mum, who worked 150%, usually cooked huge batches and froze in 1 portion servings. I’ve been thinking what we had. Some things that come to mind:

  • Lasagna
  • Meatloaf/meat balls with potatoes and sauce
  • Soups
  • pasta with bolognese
  • stews, like I mentioned before

If you freeze pasta you should cool it down immediately after boiling it and only add the sauce after it’s cooled down, that will keep the pasta from becoming overdone afterwards

One of my favorite soups as a kid:

  • Minced meat (50/50 beef and pork)
  • Onions
  • Sweet peppers
  • Garlic
  • potatoes
  • canned tomatoes
  • beef stock
  • tomato paste
  • Brown the meat, add chopped garlic and onions
  • add some tomato paste
  • add the canned tomatoes and peeled, diced potatoes
  • fill up with beef stock until it’s covered, let it simmer
  • Spice with salt/pepper/paprika
  • add diced carrots and sweet pepper when the potatoes need 10min to be done

It’s a fast but very filling soup, excellent on rainy autumn days

Will write my stews tomorrow:-)

1 Like

That sounds really good!

It’s really easy to make homemade frozen pizza, though it’s not exactly a huge batch unless you only eat one slice at a time. Still, might be a nice change of pace if your MIL enjoys pizza.

Basically, what you do is you cook the dough in pizza shape (any dough recipe should work) and cook it at 450 for about 5 minutes. The dough should be solid enough to hold its shape but not brown on the bottom. After it’s cooled, put the desired toppings on and then place it in a freezer bag, a couple layers of plastic wrap, or one layer plastic wrap and one layer foil. It’ll last up to two months. When you’re ready to serve it, cook it at 500 degrees until the crust is golden and the cheese has melted (about 10 minutes).

1 Like

So, it’s stew time!

I love stews, and even if some of them takes a long time to cook, the cooking itself is pretty easy. Depending on what kind of meat you choose, it can be a 20min kind of thing too. I think it’s ideal for freezing, because time and reheating will let a stew “deepen” and evolve a better, deeper flavour. Also, because it’s liquidy, it won’t dry out when reheated.

Another extra in your situation: It’s soft, it will be easy to eat for someone who just had surgery done on her shoulder.

The directions how to cook is pretty much the same, regardless of which stew. You brown the meat, set it aside, fry whatever onions/veggies you need, add the meat and spices and cover up with the preferred liquid.

  • Beef usually needs to simmer for 1,5-2h, usually you use “tougher” (and cheaper) cuts
  • Chicken is fast, will be done in 20-30 mins

To reduce liquid: Let it simmer without a lid.
To retain liquid: leave the lid on

1. Kalops - a Swedish beef stew from my childhood
Found a pretty original looking recipe here, with step by step pictures and descriptions

2. I-don’t-know-if-it-has-a-name-but-I-call-it-my-French-stew-and-the-French-would-hate-me

Pretty similar to kalops, but with different flavouring. You could basically use the kalops recipe, but add more red wine, I use more leek, onions and garlic. No Allspice, I spice with thyme, rosemary and whatever herbs I feel like using there. Sometimes I add a touch of cinnamon, it goes well with the wine.

3. Goulasch - A hungarian paprika stew with:

  • beef
  • tomato paste
  • stock
  • onion, garlic
  • red pepper
  • chili
  • paprika powder
  • salt/pepper

4. This-time-it’s-the-Moroccan-who-would-hate-me
Traditionally this would be with lamb, but I don’t like that. I use chicken or minced meat instead.

  • chicken / minced meat
  • carrots
  • celery
  • onions
  • garlic
  • chick peas
  • canned (diced) tomatoes
  • stock
  • bay leaves
  • dried apricots / dates (add this shortly before serving, they just need to get warm, not to cook)

From the spice rack:

  • coriander
  • paprika
  • tumeric
  • chili
  • cinnamon
  • salt / pepper

5. My-brother-improvised-this-and-I’ve-been-trying-to-recreate-it-for-years

  • a lot of diced onions
  • leek
  • canned corn
  • mushrooms (just leave them out if you don’t like it)
  • cooking cream
  • peanut butter
  • sambal oelek
  • chicken
  • haloumi
  • some yoghurt
    From the spice rack:
  • oregano, basil, garlic, salt, pepper

I could go on forever :sweat_smile: Well, these are 5 stews with a very different flavour profile. I’m getting really hungry now…

Let me know if you have any questions, I usually hip it with the amount, so no exact measurements. They should all be crock-potable :slight_smile: