Bountiful Living April 2016 ~ The Delights of Freezer Cooking

Do you know what really makes me happy?

Bountiful Final Banner

A freezer full of assembled meals, frozen and ready to pop in my crockpot in the morning.

You see, I am a morning person.  I start out most days with good energy, which is great for homeschool (or other tasks, if it’s the weekend).  However…..as the day proceeds by, I have a little less energy.  And a little less.  Less.  And so on!  You know how that ends.  By the time I get in bed there is absolutely no other place I’d rather be….and no other place I should be!

I wish I had fabulous energy all day.  I’m trying to figure out ways that I can stretch out that energy (it’s not as easy as you might think.  But I’m trying!).  But oftentimes when it’s dinnertime, my creativity and my energy level are minimal.  Or less than minimal.

But one solution to my energy problem I DID discover recently.

Bountiful April 1FREEZER COOKING!

I tell you, this has been the most incredible thing ever!  If you’re not familiar with freezer cooking, here it is in a nutshell:  you assemble 6-8 meals all on one afternoon (or evening or morning).  You chop up veggies.  You combine spices and seasonings.  You get sauces and meats ready.  Then, you place them in ziploc bags (or foil trays—whatever the recipe requires) and seal.  And you place them in the freezer!

Then, for as many days as you have assembled meals, all you have to do is to pop the meals in the crockpot (without the Ziplocs, of course) in the morning.  Or in the oven that night, if you’ve assembled something in a foil tray.  All you have to do at that point is perhaps throw together a salad, or heat some noodles or rice to go with the dish.

A-may-zing.  It couldn’t be easier.  It makes your evenings simpler, it provides healthy and delicious meals for you and your family, it takes the stress out of cooking when you’re worn out.

So….here’s what has made me so happy this week.  I won a veggie and fruit basket recently, and there was a big beautiful cabbage in the box.  It sat in the fridge for several days…and I started to worry that it was going to go bad because I kept forgetting to cook it.

But, I woke up one morning, and I thought, veggie soup!  Cabbage rolls!  And it all just mushroomed from there.

Sesame Chicken & Veg

Sesame Chicken & Veg

We’ve had some challenges lately, and I hadn’t been able to squeeze in freezer cooking in over a month.  But on my cabbage brainstorm day (I know, it’s odd!), I thought of those first two meals and got on a roll.  Before the afternoon was over I had prepared 6 meals and some extras!

  • Chicken Tortilla Soup (adapted from a THM recipe)
  • Slow Cooker Fajitas (from the THM Cookbook)
  • 2 freezer bags of Flylady’s Basic Veggie Soup
  • Cabbage Roll Soup (this was easier than making actual cabbage rolls, but used the same ingredients)
  • Sesame Chicken & Veggie Stir-Fry (From THM—they call it Cashew Chicken but I had no cashews!)
  • plus hubby browned three pounds of ground meat.  One lb. went in the Cabbage Roll Soup, and the other two pounds are divided and frozen in Ziplocs, ready to use on a spaghetti or soft taco night.

So why does this make me so happy?  Because I really do want to cook healthy and delicious meals.  We have just been in a season where evenings have found me worn out and just not feeling up to cook, many nights.  But when I have lovely meals completely assembled and ready to go into the crockpot (or skillet, like the Sesame Chicken), by the time we want to have dinner, all I have to do is lift off the crockpot lid and serve!

THAT makes me really, really happy.

And also—on a completely unrelated subject—I wanted to share a Printable for Garden Review with you!  You can use this to jot down what worked for you last year as you’re starting your summer garden now, or you can use it later.  Kemi and I are both thinking about our gardens and planning, so I thought you might be as well!

Garden Review Printable 2

 

Just click on Printable for Garden Review to print your own.  🙂

Enjoy!  –Wren

Now—be sure to hop over to my cohost Kemi’s Homemaking Organized blog to see what lovely happy bountiful things she has to share with you!  And what beautiful things have happened in your life and blog this month?  Join in our Link up Party and share!

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Looking for previous linkups? Find them here => Bountiful Living and Homeschooling

Disclaimer: Your particpation in this linkup means we may use your email to send you a monthly reminder of future linkups (we won’t use your email for anything else and we “may” remind you meaning we “may” forget.). Your participation also means we may feature your picture and links in a collage or social media accounts of FinchnWren and Homemaking Organized

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