....my freezer is full. Like out-of-control-full. This isn't my actual freezer in the image above, but it may as well be. Every time I open it, something falls out. Its a very obvious sign that I need to get my butt in gear and do a "Freezer Week". For at least one meal every day I am going to use something that is in the freezer. I'm really good about remembering to put meals in the freezer, but I'm not so great about remembering that they are in there.
Freezing meals is a great way to save time and money, but the real bonus is that you know you're having a healthy homemade meal insteading of giving into the temptation of take out. This theory only works if you remember what you have in your freezer, so every couple of months I take everything out, write down what I have and try to use up what I can.
Looking through my freezer, I've found some great dishes and ingredients that I can't believe I haven't used already. Here's how I'm hoping to use these things up:
- Homemade burgers: Take one to work with a piece of whole grain bread, jalapeno cheese and a salad.
Pomodoro Sauce, Chopped Broccoli & Leftover Chopped Turkey: Reheat together in a small saucepan and serve over Spaghetti Squash.
- Chicken: Try Julie's Two Ingredient Crockpot Chicken to make BBQ Chicken Sloppy Joes
Apple Cinnamon Butterscotch Muffins: Reheat and serve with creamy greek yogurt for breakfast.
- Chopped Ham, Chopped Peppers and Frozen Herbs: Make into a quick omelette.
Cauliflower Pizza Crusts, Chopped Peppers and Chopped Meats: Add pizza sauce, cheese and toppings.
- Chocolate (How is it possible that I haven't eaten all of this already? I love frozen chocolate.)
Banana Soft Serve or Whole Wheat Stevia Banana Bread
- Cooked Meatballs, Marinara Sauce and Dempsters Multigrain Oven Fresh Bread: Homemade meatball sub sandwiches
Ideally, I'd like to get the whole thing pared down so that it can someday look like this:
Need. Organized. Sane.
These are the kinds of things that help me sleep at night.
A big part of keeping things organized, is to keep track of what you have. For me, I just keep a little piece of paper, taped to the inside of the cupboard, that lists everything that I pop in there, but for a family, you may want to grab one of the handy printables that are floating around these days. Its great to help you keep track of what you put in the freezer and how long its been in there.
I like to freeze everything in 1-2 portion sizes that are easy to reheat. Here are a few other recipes that I've had success freezing in portions:
- Chunky Beef Chili
- Cranberry Clementine Bread
- Aunt Marian's Lasagna
- Carrot Cake Cookies
- Mom's Infamous Macaroni and Cheese
- Spinach Phyllo Roll Ups
- Gordon Ramsey's Shepherd's Pie
- Healthy Carrot Muffins