How to “Do” Freezer Cooking

Curious about freezer cooking? Consider purchasing my cookbook, Not Your Mother’s Make-Ahead and Freeze Cookbook from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or your local bookstore. It’s chock full with over 200 freezer-friendly recipes, planning pages, shopping lists, cooking plans, and basic and advanced how-to’s to making freezer cooking work for any home, family, and lifestyle.

Every 4-6 weeks or so, I take time out of my schedule to prepare several meals for the freezer. It’s like a little gift to myself, to make dinnertime a little easier in the coming weeks.

I’ve been freezer cooking for a long time. But, over the last year I’ve discovered lots of new things to make our meals even tastier.I’ve tested new recipes and tried out new techniques.

While some foodies may snub their noses at it or are reluctant to give freezer cooking the complete stamp of approval, I’ve found it to be a happy compromise between a busy life, a tight budget, and a desire for good, homecooked food.

Is this your month?

According to last week’s LifeasMOM readers’ survey, over 50 percent of respondents do freezer cooking in some capacity. But, amongst the others, many of you expressed the desire to get started with make ahead meals. There’s apprehension, intimidation, and plain old, “not sure where to start.”

This weekend Crystal and I will be sharing our latest freezer cooking adventures with you. If you haven’t ever tested the freezer cooking waters, now’s the time.

If you’re not sure where to start, well, here are some ideas to get you started:

Want to Jump Right In?

But, if you’re one of those people who hates to read directions and is eager to jump right in, come back tomorrow afternoon for a Quick Start Guide to Freezer Cooking.

Are you on board?

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Comments

  1. I am looking into the freezer cooking. Our life is crazy with kids and sports. I wanted to see if you have any information about freezing bread? (bread, rolls, banana bread, indian fry bread) I would love to get your thoughts how to freeze it and keep it fresh. Thank you!!

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      Yes, you can freeze bread. I usually wrap banana bread in plastic wrap and then put it in a ziploc bag. I freeze sandwich bread often. It just kind of depends on the bread. Always cool completely and try to get as much air out as possible from the packaging. That will reduce freezer burn.

  2. Goodie there is going to be a quick start guide. Yes I don’t like to read directions!

  3. Buying meat in bulk, cooking it all up and then freezing it is about the extent of my freezer cooking. I would like to do more. Maybe soon. I’m ready to branch out and try some new things. I’m making more of my own breads and I think that could be a huge time saver, to freeze the dough ahead of time. Do you do much freezing of prebaked breads/doughs?

  4. Looking forward to it – YES, this is my month!

  5. AllieZirkle says:

    I am so far behind, my freezer is bare! Well, we have plenty of beans from last week. That’s about it!

    Trying my hand at taquitos this time around. I’m cooking up meat in the crock pot with onion soup mix, once cooled I’ll mix with a can of rotel & cheddar cheese. Should be tasty!

    I need to make a meal plan for the month so I can see what I actually need to make vs. what I want to make. lol

    :) Allie

  6. I’ve been doing freezer cooking in one way or another in bursts for the past 7 years. I’m happy to have just bought a deep freeze and to have kept it full of dinners and breakfasts (and ice cream!) for the past 6 months. Love my freezer food and Love your recipes!

  7. Thanks to both you and Crystal, I’ve learned to stock my freezer monthly so we can eat homemade meals throughout the month. It’s so worth it! I’ve even got several of my friends doing it now!

  8. I love freezer cooking! I need to do a session again. We need breakfast foods and lunch items. Oh, yeah, I’d like to get a bunch of meat dishes done, also. Looking forward to seeing what your going to make this time!

    http://www.lindaslunacy.blogspot.com

  9. I never really thought freezer cooking was something I would/could/should do until I started reading your blog. I have a month’s meals in my freezer and boy, each morning is easier. Each shopping trip is easier. Life is just all-around easier. Of course, there are only 3 of us in the house. I’m sure it will get harder with the more we add, but this is definitely the way to go for me!

  10. I love to cook ahead; my big stumbling block is that most recipes seem to gear towards meat, which we do not eat. I can make ahead dried beans and then freeze portions, also veggie chili or ziti/lasagna. I also do up some breakfast/snacky items. Beyond that I am at a loss. I would love some more meatless dinner ideas that work well for the freezer.

  11. I am so on board with you! Freezer cooking has changed life around our house. We have a flexible menu and are eating healthier, more varied and easy meals! I have been breaking it up to do beef and pasta and breakfast meals once a month and then the chicken dishes two weeks later, which works really well and takes only about 2 hours to prep. (I am lazy and premarinate the meat, but I count these as meals!)
    I have been using freezer techniques for parties and holidays too and it saves my sanity and my budget. Your slab apple pie with vanilla ice cream has ended our BBQs on a high note! Thanks for all your great advice!

  12. I’ve been doing two-week freezer cooking. It’s taken some pressure off, but it also allows me to spend less at one time for the ingredients. I may jump back to the full month, but this works with our schedule right now.

  13. I’ve been wondering if I could make homemade waffles and then flash freeze them and take them out and pop them in the toaster when we’re ready to eat them. Has anyone tried this and does it work?

    • Jessica Fisher says:

      When I had a waffle maker that worked, I did this often. It helps not to cook them too much the first time.

    • @Kelly,

      My hubby just made a pile of waffles and freezing works great. Kids ate them this morning! It’s already been said but get as much air out as possible before freezing.

    • @Kelly,
      Freezer waffles! My son prefers them over fresh made! I make whole wheat waffles with wheat germ in them (he has no idea they are so good for him!) and make them the regular way in my waffle maker. I then let any leftovers cool, and put them in a container each separated with a piece of wax paper. Right into the toaster from the freezer – they are so good!

  14. You can definitely flash freeze waffles and toast as needed. I also saw a great idea somewhere to save your empty syrup bottles and put waffle / pancake mix in it so you can make them really fast in the morning.

  15. This is awesome!!

    I do some freezer cooking, stuffed shells, stuffed peppers, taco meat, cooked hamburger, quick breads etc, but I would love to branch out and be more prepared, more ready and less stressed,lol

    Thanks for taking the time to do this, its very helpful even to those who already do OAMC to some degree!!

    Dana

  16. I’m participating-we’ve cleaned out most of the freezer meals.

  17. My freezer is getting empty, and I’m forming my To-Do List now! Pizza dough is definitely on the list! And, I’m looking forward to trying chicken and bean enchiladas!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] free updates via email. Thanks for visiting!Have you been freezer cooking this weekend? Wish you could figure it out? Want to jump right in? There’s never a better time than the [...]

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  3. [...] I regularly stock our freezer with meals to be enjoyed in the weeks ahead, I need to think long term. The month holds two birthdays and one [...]

  4. [...] Jessica Fisher, aka FishMama, is a busy mom of six kids. She regularly fills her freezer in order to enjoy easier mealtimes and good, cheap [...]

  5. [...] you know, I like having meals ready to go in my freezer. In fact, I am a little infatuated with my deep freeze. Yeah, I’m weird that [...]

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