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Old 01-20-2006, 12:54 PM   #1
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Meals that I can prepare and freeze?

I was wondering if anyone has some ideas of meals that I can prepare and freeze. I'm having my first baby soon and I am the one who does all the cooking, so I am hoping to have a few weeks of meals on hand. Thank You!!!!

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Old 01-20-2006, 12:56 PM   #2
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Here's a great thread to get you started, lucy:

http://www.discusscooking.com/forums...=freezer+meals

Also, don't forget that if you're nursing, omit all onions, broccoli, cauliflower, beans and other gassy foods or your little one will have tummy aches!

Congrats, btw!!!
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Old 01-20-2006, 01:37 PM   #3
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Welcome to the world of soon to be no sleeping in? Seriously Congrats to you.
Lasgana would be a good one. I do that all the time. Since It is just two of us now. I make one ond freeze one. I cook noodles 1/2 way and then make it and freeze. also
I cooked a turkey ahead of time and slice the meat,make and freeze the gravy in small containers . boil up potatoes later and a veggie . you could even cook and mash the potatoes and freeze them. Spanish rice freezes well.
good luck
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Old 01-20-2006, 01:41 PM   #4
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Congrats to you! I have a new son who will be a month old tomorrow. Welcome to dc and we hope you stick around! Soup was something I stocked up on. Also a chicken pot pie and lasanga. Good luck and hope it all goes smoothly for you!
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Old 01-20-2006, 01:49 PM   #5
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Many congrats!

One of my favorite "soul food" recipes is easily frozen. I guess my version is soul food, as there are countless recipes for Shepherd's Pie. I keep it simple: cooked ground beef, creamed corn, and mashed potatoes, layered in that order, baked for about 30 minutes at 350. Each layer is just enough to cover the area of the pan used. That also makes this a very easy dish to reduce or increase depending on the number of servings needed.

Another soul food, layered dish I make is a cheesey chicken casserole. Cooked chicken (I use boneless breast, but whatever) cut up, swiss cheese (I prefer big eye), cream of chicken soup (or your favorite cream of soup), and prepared stuffing, layered in that order. Same time and temp as above, and just as easily modified to more or less servings.

I recommend a "catch pan" of some sort, as both of these will bubble quite a bit and may spill over the pan cooked in.

I have had both of them reheated from frozen, and they taste just as good, if not better (always the sign of a good casserole) then the first go round.
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Old 01-20-2006, 03:09 PM   #6
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Here's a couple:

Spaghetti Sauce
Meatloaf
Sloppy Joe's
Stroganoff (I would do noodles just before serving)
Stacked Enchiladas (Red or Green or Both!)
Burritos (stuffing is endless, wrap in foil tightly,then freeze in ziplocs)
Chicken Pot Pie (Homemade with all kinds of veggies, and Beef pie too)
Egg Rolls
Calzones

I just do not like Pasta frozen....mine just turns too mushy after freezing, so I like to do it just before serving.

Congratulations BTW!
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Old 01-20-2006, 05:14 PM   #7
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Congratulations! My son is 17 months now, and I still freeze! Don't forget the wonderful invention of the crock pot too! Use that to cook roasts, turkey breasts, and chickens - freeze the leftovers. Reynolds has a wonderful product out - crock pot liners, makes cleanup very easy! Congratulations!
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Old 01-20-2006, 06:57 PM   #8
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check our this broccoli cheese casserole, can't believe I forgot to mention it earlier! http://www.discusscooking.com/forums...eese+casserole
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Old 01-20-2006, 08:24 PM   #9
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One suggestion: Get a big package of good ground chuck, and turn it into several meals:
Make up a meatloaf, and freeze it in the pan. When ready to eat, thaw, and put in the oven with baking potatoes. All you'll have to do is heat up a can of peas or corn to go with.
Make some into porkupines (meatballs with rice), freeze on cookie sheet, then put in ziplock bag.
Make some into patties for burgers or chopped steaks. For chopped steaks, season with mustard, Worchestershire sauce or Heinz 57. Wrap with bacon if you wish. Freeze same way as meatballs. Cook them the same way you would a steak.

Here's my recipe for Porkupines. It came from a B&H cookbook that is long out of print:

1 egg, beaten
1 can condensed tomato soup
1/4 cup long-grain white rice, OR
1/3 cup quick cooking rice for microwave version
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp pepper
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 tsp Worchestershire sauce
1/2 tsp dried oregano, crushed

Combine egg, 1/4 cup of the soup, uncooked rice, onion powder and pepper. Add beef and mix well. Shape into 20 meatballs. Place in a large skillet. Mix the remaining soup with the Worchestershire sauce, oregano, and 1/2 cup water; pour over meatballs. Bring to boiling and reduce heat. Cover and simmer, stirring often, about 20 minutes, or until no pink remain in meat and rice is tender. Skim fat. Pass Parmesan cheese,if desired.

MICROWAVE INSTRUCTIONS *Recommended
Combine egg, 1/4 cup of the soup, 1/2 cup uncooked quick-cooking rice, the onion powder and pepper. Add beef. Mix well. Shape into 20 meatballs.In an 8x8x2 baking dish, micro-cook meatballs, covered, on high for 6 minutes, re-arranging once. Drain well. Mix the remaining soup with the Worchestershire sauce, oregano and 1/2 cup water. Pour over meatballs. Cook, covered, on high, stirring twice, for 3-5 minutes more, or until no pink remains in the meatnballs and rice is tender.

yield: 4 servings

*I wouldn't worry about that little bit of onion powder. I don't think it will give you nursing mothers a problem. My daughter actually ate pizza, and it didn't bother little Jesse. Maybe she was just lucky.

*My mother sometimes made the porkupines with cream of mushrooms soup instead of tomato. They were very good that way.
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Old 01-20-2006, 08:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michelemarie
..............Reynolds has a wonderful product out - crock pot liners, makes cleanup very easy!
Don't you just love those? They are a gift from heaven!!!
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Old 01-20-2006, 08:44 PM   #11
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I have a crock pot cleaner...my husband. I find that if you just soak the crock overnight in soapy water, it's quite easy to clean up.
I'm not that crazy about the idea of cooking my food in plastic.
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Old 01-20-2006, 08:47 PM   #12
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It's the same idea as those oven bags that you use for poultry. I really like that I can take the remaining food out, and just tie up the bag and refrigerate it.
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Old 01-20-2006, 10:22 PM   #13
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Macaroni and cheese is a good one. So is chili. If you have recipes that require you to brown your ground beef you can do that when you bring it home, drain well, and freeze it that way.
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Old 01-21-2006, 12:20 AM   #14
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congrats and hugs lucy! cool, another new dc member is on the way.

to steal a page from irish nationalists: our victory wil be in the sound of the laughter of our children.

sorry i can't offer any recipes. i remember my wife lived on vanilla and chocolate soy milk, mochi ice cream, and lots of korean bbq.
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Old 01-21-2006, 02:28 AM   #15
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We freeze food for people all the time, and items like baked ziti, lasagna, and meat loaf work just fine, as other kind folk have posted.

Also, bacon, after being fried, will freeze well.

Just nuke it while you are frying or cooking some scrambled eggs and you have something to eat.

Or take the bacon and crumble it. Drain a can of mushrooms. Squeeze the water out of frozen, or canned, spinach. As you are scrambling some eggs add the bacon, a few mushrooms, and a bit of the spinach. It is very tasty and takes little time.

Scramble eggs and then add some shredded cheese.

In lieu of onions, just add a dash of Mrs. Dash.

Can always toss in some fried kielbasa or pieces or ham.

Can toss together an egg dish, with nuked bacon, and toasted English muffins, or toast, in less than ten minutes.

And then, hopefully, once in a while, you might get a chance to eat it, all at once.

For some reason, babies get to sleep all the time and Moms never get the chance to nod off.

God bless.
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Old 01-21-2006, 10:29 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucyr2xoxo
I was wondering if anyone has some ideas of meals that I can prepare and freeze. I'm having my first baby soon and I am the one who does all the cooking, so I am hoping to have a few weeks of meals on hand. Thank You!!!!
Lots of meals can be prepared ahead of time and frozen. Now, probably as important as anything else, are you planning on breast feeding? If so, then you are looking at a different diet. I assume you are getting prenatal care from an OB-GYN or Pediatrician - ask your Doctor or his/her nurse about the La Leche League in your area. They have information on what things a new mother should/should not eat. Even if you are not going to breastfeed - ask your Doctor about post partum diet/nutritional guidance.

This way - you'll have a better idea of what you should be planning to cook/freeze for consumption after the "blessed event" for your, and the baby's, health.
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Old 01-22-2006, 04:32 AM   #17
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Soups, so many soups freeze well (depending on the recipe, some are best left un-pureed - if applicable - until after they have been unthawed). The veggies and meat for things like stir-fries and stews (if not the whole dish themselves) can be made up ahead of time and frozen. Hearty pasta dishes often freeze well too, rice dishes can be a little more hit and miss, but I'll had success with freezing things like fried rice and pilafs.

It's often the prep that requires the most amount of our attention when we cook so if it's possible for you (time, freezer space, budget, etc) it might be worth chopping and portioning things like vegetables, meat/fish, fruit and stock (freeze it in ice cube trays then pop out the frozen cubes and put them in a secure freezer-proof bag or container) before the little bundle of joy arrives.

Homemade breads, rolls, biscuits and scones often freeze excellently too and things like cookie dough and pizza crust dough freeze very well before they are cooked too.

Dont' want to sound for a moment like I'm stating the obvious, but remember to lable everything well (date, portion weight if applicable) and keep moving stuff from the back to the front of the freezer as you use it so that the oldest stuff gets used up first (or before it becomes too old).

Huge congratulations Lucy, and welcome to DC!
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Old 01-22-2006, 05:40 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piccolina
Dont' want to sound for a moment like I'm stating the obvious, but remember to lable everything well (date, portion weight if applicable) and keep moving stuff from the back to the front of the freezer as you use it so that the oldest stuff gets used up first (or before it becomes too old).
Jessica, I have finally learned the hard way to label EVERYTHING. So often I've stuck something in the freezer, thinking I'd remember what it was.
When I had the greenhouses, I had more time for cooking in the winter, and would often make extra and freeze for use in the spring when I was so busy I was meeting myself coming and going. Sometimes HB would come home and want to know what was for supper, and I'd say, "Whatever's in the ziplock, honey."
As for keeping things sorted out in the deep freeze...all it takes is for my husband to go digging through there one time, and it's a jumbled mess. He is a wonderful man, but terribly untidy.
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Old 01-22-2006, 08:34 PM   #19
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Thank you everyone for all your great tips and your well wishes!!!!! I will definetly be using more than a few of these suggestions, also thanks for the advice regarding breast feeding and my diet, I never even thought of this. Again, a big thank you to all!!!!!!!!
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Old 01-23-2006, 08:04 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Constance
Jessica, I have finally learned the hard way to label EVERYTHING. So often I've stuck something in the freezer, thinking I'd remember what it was.
When I had the greenhouses, I had more time for cooking in the winter, and would often make extra and freeze for use in the spring when I was so busy I was meeting myself coming and going. Sometimes HB would come home and want to know what was for supper, and I'd say, "Whatever's in the ziplock, honey."
As for keeping things sorted out in the deep freeze...all it takes is for my husband to go digging through there one time, and it's a jumbled mess. He is a wonderful man, but terribly untidy.
Hi Constance, I like to lable everything (lol, yes I was that nerdy kid at camp who had their suitcase arranged and organized methodically) but know exactly what you mean about being married to an untidy man. DH isn't too messy, but it's always he who asks me where anything is in the house
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