One of the items on our Bucket List this fall was to get some freezer meals prepped that we can just drop in the crockpot for those nights when life gets busy.
We found a great blog called The Family Freezer that focuses on healthy crockpot and frozen meals. They have a lot of variety to choose from, so we took a look at ones that sounded like our families would enjoy eating and made our list.
The meals we decided to make were:
Slow Cooker Cranberry Pork Roast
Healthy Crockpot Beef and Broccoli
Shredded Crockpot BBQ Pork
Slow Cooker Ginger Peach Chicken
Crockpot Korean Beef Lettuce Wraps
This is not the first time we have attempted to make freezer meals. A year ago we picked out 5 meals, but with so much going on, we were unable to go shopping together. Also, we didn’t fully read the recipes, we just picked them by the names, which was mistake number 1. It turned out that the majority of the recipes called for canned vegetables, not fresh, and for spice/sauce packets that were not available at the grocery stores we both went to. So we improvised and picked spices/sauces that sounded similar. The end result was that we didn’t have meals that were the same, because our ingredients were not exactly what the recipes called for, and so we couldn’t really compare them. Also, we were disappointed that we were adding things like canned potatoes and carrots instead of using fresh. It made us feel like they weren’t as healthy as we wanted them to be. Needless to say we had a fun time making them together (I took all my ingredients to Mary’s house) and cracking up over the mistakes that we made. This is why we were inspired to try it again. Plus, overall those meals weren’t too bad tasting, we could just never recreate them because of the difference in ingredients that we used. I actually have one STILL in my freezer that I didn’t buy enough chicken for so it is just the sauce. Not sure if it’s still any good.
So here we are again, but we decided to shop together this time to make sure we had the same exact ingredients, and we read the recipes first. Mary compiled a list of ingredients for all the meals, and off we went to shop! We took all the items back to her house and started the process. Things were going pretty well, as the recipes are really easy to prepare. Basically you dump all the ingredients into a ziplock freezer bag, and voila! Where we got ourselves into trouble, looking back now, is that the Beef and Broccoli recipe called for the beef to be sliced and we bought steaks, so we thought it would be easier to divide and conquer for time’s sake. Mary started slicing the steaks for both of us, and I started putting the remaining ingredients in the bag. What I didn’t realize was that my printed version of the recipe had gotten cut off and I was missing 3 ingredients on my list! So we continued making the meals, thought we were finished, and began clean up and packing my meals in a cooler. As we put things away, we noticed that we didn’t use the onions we had sitting out. Whoops! I left because I had to get home for the school bus, and Mary tried to figure out what we forgot and for which recipe. We laughed pretty hard about it, because, it figures, we thought we were on a roll, but the best laid plans can go wrong! Oh well! Mary realized it was the Beef and Broccoli recipe and that I missed the garlic, onion, and cornstarch. After getting home I unloaded my meals and leftover ingredients and proceeded to add the missing items to the Beef and Broccoli ziplock bag.
We had a fun time making our meals, and honestly, they all sound really delicious! The links are below if you would like to try them out! It is always more fun to do this with a friend, but a Sunday Night prepping meals for the week would also be a good time to make these. Also, they don’t have to be frozen, you could just have them ready for your week!
We will keep you posted on how they turn out as we cook them! The directions say they can be frozen up to 3 months, but we will probably use them before then.
Let us know if you try any of the recipes that we picked!
And share with us your favorite freezer meal! We are always looking for good ones!