Freezer Meal 101

If you are just getting your feet wet with freezer meals, go check out this post first.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Freezer Salsa

Freezer Salsa

3/4 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup chopped sweet red pepper
1 to 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
12 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped (about 6 cups)
3 cans (6 ounces each) tomato paste
1/3 cup lime juice
1/3 cup white vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon basil (I use dried)

  1. In large saucepan, saute the onion, red pepper and garlic in oil for 5 minutes.  Stir in the remaining ingredients and bring to a soft rolling boil.  Cover, reduce heat and boil for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Cool completely.
  2. Spoon into freezer containers.  Cover and freeze for up to 3 months.  Make sure you stir before serving your thawed salsa.
*you can use green pepper in place of the red pepper if you don't like red.  You can also add celery to the recipe, but in our house, we don't like celery.  If you want to add the celery, add 1/4 - 1/2 cup.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Meat Loaf Miniatures

Meat Loaf Miniatures

1 cup ketchup
3 to 4 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tsp ground mustard
2 eggs, beaten
4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 cups Crispix cereal, crushed
3 tsp onion powder
1/2 to 1 tsp seasoned salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp pepper
3 lbs lean ground beef

In a large bowl, combine ketchup, brown sugar and mustard.  Remove 1/2 cup for topping; set aside.  Add the eggs,, ,Worcestershire sauce, cereal and seasonings to remaining ketchup mixture.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Crumble beef over cereal mixture and mix well.

Press meat mixture into 18 muffin cups.  Bake at 375 for 18-20 minutes.  Drizzle with remaining ketchup mixture; bake 10 minutes longer or until meat is no longer pink and a meat thermometer reads 160. 

Cool completely.  Place on cookie sheet and freeze for 2-3 hours.  Once they are frozen, transfer to Ziploc freezer bag and freeze up to 3 months.

To serve: Thaw completely in refrigerator.  Place loafs in a greased baking dish.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until headed through.

Chicken and Bows

Chicken and Bows

1 package (16 ounces) bow tie
2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 cup chopped sweet red pepper
1/4 cup butter, cubed
2 cans (10.75 ounces) Cream of Chicken soup
2 cups frozen peas*
1 1/2 cup milk
1 tsp garlic
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2/3 cup grated Parmesan Cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions.  Meanwhile, dutch oven, cook chicken and red pepper in butter over medium heat for 5-6 minutes or until chicken juices run clear.

Stir in soup, peas, milk, garlic powder, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 1-2 minutes or until heated through.  Stir in Parmesan cheese.  Drain pasta, add to chicken mixture and toss to coat. 

Cool.  Divide in half and place in  Freezer Ziploc bag.  Freeze for up to 3 months.

*We used 2 green beans, whole (we cut into 3rds).

This can also be a now and later.  Serve one portion now and freeze the rest for later.

Amazing Crock Pot Meatballs

Amazing Crock Pot Meatballs

1 package frozen meatballs
1 bottle any brand BBQ Sauce
1 jar any brand any flavor jam

Mix BBQ sauce and jam in a freezer Ziploc bag.  Mix thoroughly.  Add meatballs. 

To serve: Thaw completely.  Cook in crock pot on low for 6 hours.  Or, you can bring to a boil in a pan and simmer 10-15 minutes.  Serve with rice.

Tortilla Chicken

Tortilla Chicken

1 (10.75 ounce) Cream of Chicken soup
1 (10.75 ounce) Cream of Mushroom soup
1 cup chopped onion
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chile's
2 cups sour cream
12 corn tortillas*
1 cup canola oil
4 cups cooked, chopped chicken
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Combine soups, onion, green chile's and sour cream.  Heat 1 cup oil in large skillet.  Cook tortillas briefly, one at a time for about 20 seconds on each side.  Drain on paper towels.  Cut tortillas into fourths.  In a greased foil baking pan, make the following layers, using half for both layers; tortillas, chicken, cheese, sauce.  Repeat layers.  Cover with extra heavy foil.  Label and freeze. 

To serve: Thaw.  Bake covered for 60 minutes at 350.  Uncover.  Top with more shredded Cheddar cheese.  Bake 10 minutes.  Serve with shredded lettuce, sour cream, diced tomatoes, sliced olives and salsa.

*Corn tortillas will turn mushy and fall apart if they are not cooked before freezing in this recipe.

Cornflake Chicken

Cornflake Chicken

6 boneless skinless chicken breasts halves
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1 cup corn flakes
1 tsp salt
dash pepper
3 Tbsp. butter

Spray baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.  Place 5 pats of butter on baking sheet.  Dip chicken breasts first in evaporated milk, then in corn flake crumbs.  Place each on a butter pat.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and top each with another butter pat.  Bake for 30 minutes at 350.  Remove from oven and allow to cool.  Cover chicken on baking sheet with plastic wrap.  Place in freezer.  Allow to freeze at least 3 hours.  When frozen remove from baking sheets and place in freezer bag.  Label and freeze.

To serve: Thaw.  Heat through in microwave or covered in onion.  Do not over bake.

I bought corn flake crumbs in a box so that saved on time for this meal.  This meal isn't hard to prepare.  Literally takes minutes.

Slow Cooked Chili

Slow Cooked Chili

1 cup dry pinto beans*
2 lbs ground beef
2 cups chopped onion
2 (14.5 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cup celery
2 tsp minced garlic
2 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp cumin
2 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt

Cover beans with water and soak overnight.  Drain and discard water.  Cover with water again and boil for 10 minutes.  Drain and discard water.  Place beans in slow cooker.  Brown ground beef with onions.  Add to slow cooker.  Add tomatoes, green pepper, celery, garlic, chili powder, pepper, cumin, sugar and salt to slow cooker and mix well.  Cover and cook on Low for 10 hours or on high for 5 hours.  Remove from slow cooker and allow to cool.  Place in freezer bag.  Label and freeze.

To serve: Thaw.  Heat until hot and bubbly.  Serve with cornbread or crackers.  Delicious topped with sour cream and shredded cheese. 

*You can substitute 2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans for the 1 cup dry beans.  We used dry pinto beans not soaked or cooked and just cooked the chili longer.

We also didn't use the celery because neither of our families like celery.  And, we used petite diced tomatoes (pureed) in place of the stewed tomatoes.