I love making freezer meals! I feel such a great sense of accomplishment when I see my kitchen counter filled with the meals I have made for my family. The other thing I love about making freezer meals is that I only have to cook and clean up once!
Making your own freezer meals has several advantages over the store bought versions: healthier, tastier, and less expensive. Manufacturers saturate their meals with salt to preserve the meal and increase the flavor. By making your own freezer meals you can ensure the quality and quantity of ingredients.
When you think of freezer meals, you may think of marinated meats and casseroles. Here are two freezer meals you should try that contain healthy ingredients and are easy and delicious.
Freezer Meal #1 – Chicken Stir Fry
This is an easy freezer meal to cook in a large quantity. The most time consuming part is washing and cutting the veggies. It only takes minutes to blanch the vegetables and cook the chicken. You can use a variety of colorful veggies which adds a lot of nutrition to this healthy dish!
Completely cook the chicken and blanch the vegetables.
Use any combination of your favorite vegetables, some ideas include:
Sugar snap peas
Once you have completely cooked your chicken and blanched your veggies, spread them out on a tray and place in the freezer. When the chicken and vegetables are frozen, place into gallon size freezer bags to be reheated later.
Mix together equal parts soy sauce and sugar with a dash of sesame oil and garlic power to taste. Put sauce in a small baggie inside the freezer bag. Pour over the chicken and vegetables when re-heating.
When you are ready, heat on the stove or in the microwave and serve with rice.
Freezer Meal #2 – Vegetable Enchiladas
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for baking dishes
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) reduced-sodium vegetable broth
Coarse salt and ground pepper
3 cups grated pepper Jack cheese (12 ounces)
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 box (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 box (10 ounces) frozen corn kernels, thawed
6 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts separated
16 corn tortillas (6-inch)
To make sauce:
In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add 1 teaspoon cumin, flour, and tomato paste; cook for one minute while whisking. Whisk in broth and 3/4 cup water; bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, and cook until slightly thickened, 5 to 8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, and set aside.
To make filling:
In a large bowl, combine 2 cups cheese, beans, spinach, corn, scallion whites, and remaining 1 teaspoon cumin; season with salt and pepper.
Lightly oil two 8-inch square baking dishes; set aside. Stack tortillas, and wrap in damp paper towels; microwave on high for 1 minute. Or stack and wrap in aluminum foil and heat in oven for 5 to 10 minutes. Top each tortilla with a heaping 1/3 cup of filling; roll up tightly and arrange, seam side down, in prepared baking dishes.
Top with cheese, and cover baking dishes with plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. Place sauce in an airtight container. Freeze enchiladas and sauce for up to 2 months.
To bake from frozen: Thaw sauce in refrigerator overnight. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove foil and plastic wrap from baking dishes, and pour sauce over enchiladas; cover with foil. Bake 30 minutes; remove foil, and bake until bubbly, about 15 minutes more. Cool 5 minutes; serve garnished with scallion greens.