Freezer Meals
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Freezer Meals



A brief overview for preparing freezer meals and creating your own assembly day plan and grocer list.

A brief overview for preparing freezer meals and creating your own assembly day plan and grocer list.



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    Freezer Meals Freezer Meals Presentation Transcript

    • Once A Month Cooking Class
      Taught by K’Lea Kelley
      Freezer Meals
    • Once-a-Month Cooking
      See book by Mimi Wilson and Mary Beth Lagerborg for recipes and ideas
      Create your own meal prep plan and grocery list with your family’s favorite recipes then use it month after month. (In time, you will become so efficient you’ll amaze yourself and your neighbors too!!!)
    • Groundwork
      Start with your family’s favorite recipes.
      Pick simple recipes, and have a variety. Make sure they fit your budget.
      Divide recipes into groups such as chicken, beef, meatless, fish, casseroles, miscellaneous
      You can simplify and have fun with a friend by combining efforts with someone else.
    • Some Foods Do Not Freeze Well
      Raw salad vegetables
      Hard Cooked Eggs
      Gelatin desserts
      Icing made with egg whites or boiled frostings
      Instant Rice (it becomes mushy). Regular rice works fine
      Custard, cream or pies with meringue.
      Gravies and sauces thickened with flour or cornstarch. (Sauces made from cream soups work better)
    • Menu Calendar
      Reproduce a blank calendar
      Record monthly menu in pencil in case you need to move them around
      Check your family’s schedule for the month to coordinate meals with activities and busy days
      Choose menus for company and special days first. Also, plan easy meals for days when parents will be away
      Pencil in menus for remaining days
    • Shopping Lists
      Use recipes to compile a shopping list
      Don’t forget to list the containers or freezer bags you need
      Glass Pyrex casserole pans with lids work well if you don’t want to purchase disposable aluminum cooking pans
      Use a running tally to keep track of
      Pounds of meat
      Canned goods
      Dairy products
    • Menu Ideas (from K’Lea’s class)
      Marinated Flank Steak (freeze ahead)
      Baked Potatoes
      Baked Potatoes
      Chili Topping and Grated Cheese (Freeze ahead)
      Fruit Cobbler
      Lasagna (freeze ahead)
      French Bread
      Farmer’s Casserole (hash browns, ham, cheese, eggs, onion)
      Banana Sauce Muffins
      Fresh Fruit
      Muffins and casserole can be made ahead. Cook muffins and freeze, prepare casserole and freeze before baking
      Herbed Chicken
      Steamed Broccoli
      Each item can be placed in a freezer bag – then place all freezer bags into a gallon freezer bag to have all ingredients together
      Chicken Cacciatore (Freeze ahead)
      Green Beans
    • More Menu Ideas (Tammy’s favorites)
      Mexican Meatballs
      Spanish Rice
      Strawberry Lemonade
      Chicken Enchiladas
      Refried Beans
      Spanish Rice
      Baked Potatoes
      Steamed Vegetables
      Country Chicken Vegetable Casserole
      Fruit Cup
      Sweet and Sour Meatballs
      Green Beans
      Fruit Cup
      Swedish Meatballs
      Mashed Potatoes
      Steamed Vegetables
    • Create Your Own Meal Plans!
      Chicken Stir Fry over Rice
      Marinated Chicken Breasts
      Seasoned Hamburger Patties (mix and shape into patties – freeze between sheets of wax paper)
      Sloppy Joes
      Chopped BBQ Beef or Pork with Sauce
      Oriental Beef and Broccoli with Rice
      Chicken and Broccoli with Cheesy Rice
      Breakfast Burritos
      Beef Stew
      Stuffed Pasta Shells or Ravioli with Marinara sauce
    • Assembly
      Copy recipes onto large index cards or place in plastic page protectors
      Spread recipes on table and create an order of assembly that will flow well
      Group recipes that use similar ingredients, especially meats
      One the recipes are in order, go through each one, tallying the amounts of food you need to prepare:
      how many onions to chop
      Garlic cloves to press
      Ground beef to brown
      Chicken breasts to cook
    • Make a Plan
      Determine order of assembly
      Recipes that require longer cooking times should be started first early in the day
      Allow time between groups of recipes so you can take a break
      • Write or type up your plan to use month after month
      Whenever possible, combine steps for several dishes:
      Cook the rice for all dishes
      Sauté onions, vegetables, etc.
      Brown hamburger for all meals
      Cook chicken cubes for all meals
    • Day before: Prep Work
      Plan for items that can be done the day before cooking/assembly such as:
      Soaking beans
      Cooking meats
      Chopping vegetables
    • Cooking with Meat
      Frozen Meats must be cooked before refreezing
      Use fresh (unfrozen) meats for marinated cuts, meatballs or meatloaf.
      Large amounts of hamburger can be easily browned in a steamer
      Large amounts of cooked chicken cubes can be made by baking several boneless, skinless chicken breasts for 30 minutes at 350 F. (Cover pan with foil to retain moisture). Cut into cubes after baking.
      Ham can be purchased at the Deli in extra thick slices. These can be easily cubed for different recipes.
    • Preparation Tips
      Lasagna – prepare sauce from scratch to get a thicker sauce, prepare with uncooked noodles – noodles will soften and cook while baking
      Save your butter wrappers in the freezer – they work great for greasing pans
      Overripe bananas can be frozen (leave in the peel) and microwave for 15 seconds to use in banana breads, muffins and smoothies
      Use frozen vegetables in casseroles (they have already been blanched and will store well in frozen meals)
    • Helpful Hints
      Date each meal so you know how long it has been in your freezer
      Use all meals with 4-6 weeks
      Allow hot foods to cool completely, then freeze
      Blanch and drain vegetables before freezing to keep them from becoming discolored or mushy.
    • Helpful Hints
      Wrap muffins in plastic wrap before placing in freezer bags
      If a recipe calls for cheese to be sprinkled on top, put grated cheese in a freezer bag and attach it to you entree before freezing
      Try to remove as much air as possible from the freezer bag or container to prevent freezer burn.
    • Packaging and Labeling
      Use Zip loc freezer bags, disposable aluminum pans, or glass Pyrex dishes with tight fitting lids
      Individual components of a freezer meal are each placed in a separate zip loc bag. All Bags are then placed in a large gallon size bag to keep meal together.
      Label your bags or containers with:
      Name of the recipe, Date of preparation, Cooking Instructions
    • Sample 7 Day Menu Plan
      1. Marinated Flank Steak, Baked Potatoes, Salad, Bread
      2. Chicken Cacciatore, Noodles, Green Beans, Bread
      3. Meal-in-One Potatoes, Salad, Fruit Cobbler
      4. Herbed Chicken, Rice, Steam Broccoli
      5. Lasagna, Salad, French Bread
      6. Farmer’s Casserole, Banana Sauce Muffins, Fresh Fruit
      7. Leftover Night or Eating Out
    • Sample Grocery List for Menu Plan
      1.5 Lbs. Flank Steak
      6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
      1 ½ lb. lean hamburger
      2 Slices of Deli ham, Thick
      28 oz can Italian Style crushed tomatoes
      16 oz. can peeled tomatoes
      12 oz. can tomato paste
      1 Can Cream of Mushroom Soup
      1 Can Red kidney beans
      8 oz. Shredded Monterey Jack or Cheddar Cheese
      ½ C. Parmesan Cheese
      12 oz. Sliced Mozzarella
      2 12 oz cartons large curd low fat cottage cheese
      6 eggs
      2 Onions
      1 lemon
      Bunch Green onions
      Bell pepper
      Small container fresh Mushrooms
      Garlic clove 
      Chili Sauce
      8 oz. pkg. Lasagna noodles
      Basil (dried)
      Parsley (dried)
      Red WineVinegar
      6C frozen hash browns 
      2 8x8 aluminumpans
      1 9x13 aluminum pan  
      Plastic wrap
      Aluminum foil 
    • Sample Preparation Day Plan
      The Day Before…
      Mix marinade for Flank Steak. Put Flank Steak in freezer bag, pour marinade over it. Label freezer bag.
      Brown ground beef for Lasagna and Stuffed Potatoes. Place in 1 gallon freezer bag.
      Cook chicken for Chicken Cacciatore and Herbed Chicken. Place in 1 gallon freezer bag.
      Dice Ham for Farmer’s Casserole. Place in bowl. Cover.
      Chop onion, for Lasagna and Meal-In-One-Potatoes and bell pepper, mushrooms for Lasagna. Place in different prep bowls. Cover.
      Chop green onion for Farmer’s Casserole. Add to bowl with ham.
      Assembly Day…
      Start Lasagna sauce. Simmer for 30 minutes.
      Assemble Farmer’s Casserole. Freeze in 2 8x8 aluminum pans.
      Prepare Herbed Chicken. Freeze on 1 gallon freezer bag.
      Prepare and Bake Banana Sauce Muffins 15-18 minutes. Cool. Wrap in plastic wrap, put in 1 gallon freezer bag.
      Start Chicken Cacciatore sauce. Simmer for 15 minutes. Cool. Freeze in 1 gallon freezer bag.
      Cook Meal-in-One Potatoes sauce. Simmer 5 minutes. Cool. Freeze in 1 gallon freezer bag.
      Assemble Lasagna in 9x13 Aluminum pan. Cool. Freeze.