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GRAMMYX7's Photo GRAMMYX7 Posts: 355
9/16/14 3:32 P

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Today I cut chives from my garden , washed them, snip them onto a waxed paper lined 12x18 baking pan , made 2 layers and put them in the freezer. Now I am taking them out and putting them into freezer containers and I will have chives all winter long ready for soups and cooking. I have about 1 1/2 pts. Frozen already and still have quite a bit left in the garden.

Only I can make it happen
Marge


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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
8/14/14 2:05 P

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I have been freezing various fruits I bought at the Farmer's Market. I also keep a stash of bread for our lunches. Also a what veggies I can get from the garden.

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
8/14/14 2:03 P

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GRAMMYYX7. I am so with you about not being able to live without a freezer. Or in my case freezers. I have 2 7 cu. ft. freezers. I would love a bigger one but I couldn't get it down stairs, and these 2 just fit in my basement just right. I have one on each side of the wood box.

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GRAMMYX7's Photo GRAMMYX7 Posts: 355
8/12/14 4:35 P

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Today I blanched and froze chopped zucchini , shredded some zucchini, diced and froze diced jalapeño peppers , shredded and froze several chunks of cheeses and made homemade salsa verde for the first time. I feel like I have really accomplished something and it's a good feeling knowing when I am cooking I have some quick fixes in the freezer.

Only I can make it happen
Marge


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GRAMMYX7's Photo GRAMMYX7 Posts: 355
8/10/14 5:13 P

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I always cook extra so I can freeze several meals. When I get home from work on my late weeks, all we have to do is have something pulled out of freezer and just reheat it.
I also enjoy making a variety of soups and freezing them. When we want soup for a meal, the tough part is often deciding which kind to pull out of the freezer. I couldn't live without my freezer.

Only I can make it happen
Marge


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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
3/17/14 10:49 P

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Lentil Soup, individual portions
Soup Mix with Smoked Ham Hock Soup, individual portions
Easy Mulligatawny Soup, individual portions
Italian Sausage and Bean Soup, individual portions
Beef Pot Pies, 23, personal size
2-3 meals Beef Stew
Bread, White, Sourdough & Multi-grain



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MSKEESH's Photo MSKEESH Posts: 260
3/4/14 2:18 P

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homemade spaghetti sauce and fresh asparagus (that I vacuum sealed).

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EBERKSHIRE86's Photo EBERKSHIRE86 Posts: 3,886
3/4/14 12:49 P

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This past weekend I made a huge batch of healthy breakfast burritos and next weekend going to freeze a triple batch of clean pancakes (My family loves breakfast lol)

Strive for progress not perfection!

Like my fb page for daily fitness/nutrition motivation! www.facebook.com/newhealthyhappyme

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BETTERME8913's Photo BETTERME8913 SparkPoints: (5,341)
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1/8/14 12:03 A

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This last weekend I fed the freezer with chicken stew, hamburger soup, and ravioli stew. All in containers with correct portion sizes. All made in the crockpot and low fat recipes. I use these for lunches. Lots of veggies and some protein to fill me up. Working for me. Find what works for you!

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SANSIE05's Photo SANSIE05 Posts: 26
1/7/14 10:42 P

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Fed the freezer some individually portioned homemade chili

AND the husband found a super sweet deal on chicken breasts! We now have tons of individually bagged chicken in the freezer!

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KYLERA Posts: 6
1/7/14 2:04 P

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Defrost and Use:
2 batches Spaghetti Sauce

Defrost and throw in Slow Cooker:
Beef Stew
Chicken Cacciatore
Cilantro Lime and Black Bean Chicken
Black Bean Taco Soup
BBQ Chicken Tenders
Light Chicken Broccoli Alfredo

My older daughter helped me get these all prepped this weekend. It was nice to spend the afternoon with her. I plan to do more, but need to clean out/organize the freezer first!

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
1/3/14 8:24 P

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1/2 Banana cake
1 1/2 Cheesecakes
3 meals Turkey stew

Lots of baking going on in this house so we have been putting it into the freezer. Also picked up a turkey while it was in sale, to stash away for when we are craving turkey but the price is to high.

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LADYKATHLEEN5 SparkPoints: (29,144)
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12/29/13 2:42 P

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using things left over from Christmas/
2 loaves of Pumpkin bread - loaf Cranberry-orange bread

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
12/22/13 11:11 P

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Fed the freezer lots of Christmas Cookies this past week. I am so bad with baking way too much. I had to go over what I think is Christmassy and cut it back to the ones that are truly Christmas. Still I ended up with 5 kinds of cookies.

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
12/21/13 7:39 P

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Last weekend I finally got around to making a big pot of soup, I made it because I wanted soup for my lunches. Even the healthy'ish lunches I make at the school are way too fattening for me. Plus too many things that I just can't eat. I want to get around to a variety of things too into the freezer for lunches for the new year.

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BETTERME8913's Photo BETTERME8913 SparkPoints: (5,341)
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12/20/13 12:56 A

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I feed my freezer every week. It's helping me to lose weight, so much. I make low fat crockpot recipes and divide them into tupperware containers, serving sizes. I freeze some each week to make sure I have something healthy, filling, and warm for lunches. I eat some each week, freeze the rest. Then I have a variety of things in the freezer to choose from, if I don't have time to make anything else on any given week. Find what works for you, this is working for me. emoticon

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LADYKATHLEEN5 SparkPoints: (29,144)
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11/20/13 8:18 P

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Got the Thanksgiving turkey today. Does that count ?? emoticon

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
11/7/13 12:05 A

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Way to go on getting a new freezer. I loved mine so much I got a second one. I have them both filled and my hubby hasn't gone hunting yet.

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WIPINGSWEAT's Photo WIPINGSWEAT Posts: 96
11/6/13 1:35 P

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I'm getting a freezer! I'm so excited. My DH is going deer hunting next week and he always kills at least two. We're already planning on getting a chest freezer when he gets back. It will make my meal planning so much easier to be able to put stuff together if I can freeze leftovers and make stuff ahead of time.

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LADYKATHLEEN5 SparkPoints: (29,144)
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10/11/13 3:41 P

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Stuffed peppers - big batch - some for dinner tonight, rest into the freezer

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WALKIETALKIE's Photo WALKIETALKIE Posts: 285
10/10/13 6:37 P

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Wow! I never thought of zucchini as noodles. Love that idea.

My freezer has a lot of pork in it. We butchered a hog last spring. I need to do more cooking though

Edited by: WALKIETALKIE at: 10/10/2013 (18:38)
Karen

Fortune favors the bold. - Juvenal

Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass . . . it's about learning to dance in the rain.



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JRRING Posts: 1,458
10/6/13 8:32 A

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I'm inspired!!!

LADYKATHLEEN5 SparkPoints: (29,144)
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9/16/13 8:29 P

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pot roast - 2 meals
zucchini caserole
beef stew

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
9/16/13 7:48 P

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The freezer is no longer staving. I filled it yesterday.

1 dozen Zucchini Muffins (I made 3 dozen but only 1 went to the freezer)
4 racks Ribs, cooked and sauced
24 personal Beef Pot Pies, 1 meal leftover Stew
3 lg & 1 med freezer bags Deep-Fried Zucchini Sticks
6 loaves White Bread

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
9/13/13 8:42 P

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Lasagna, 10 pans into the freezer. I did a bunch of tomato canning this week and with the last 14 lbs I made pasta sauce and made all that into Lasangas. I also made 2 pans with zucchini instead of noodles, but that is dinner tonight.

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LADYKATHLEEN5 SparkPoints: (29,144)
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8/29/13 12:59 P

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Eggplant parmiagano

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
8/19/13 1:44 P

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Finally got some zucchini from my garden. I am probably one of the few people that doesn't get a glut of zucchini. I also picked up Swiss Chard from a local farmer.

I did a 3 hour marathon of casseroles a couple days ago. I made 3 meals Zucchini Casserole, 2 meals Zucchini and Rice Casserole and 2 meals Chard Rolls (they are like cabbage rolls but I use Swiss chard instead of cabbage. A whole lot easier and tastier in my opinion. All I have to do to prep the leaves is cut out the center vein after washing.)

I also did 12 loaves white bread on Thursday and Monday/Tuesday I made Fresh Apricot Bread.

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DRAGON-CHICK's Photo DRAGON-CHICK Posts: 2,065
8/5/13 8:53 A

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I'm impressed!

My journey towards better health and better writing:
mfwrites.wordpress.com/
Please come cheer me on! Never mind - remind me to blog!!!


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CIRANDELLA's Photo CIRANDELLA SparkPoints: (59,534)
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8/5/13 8:51 A

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My freezer has homemade chili, spaghetti sauce, a beef wine stew, homemade pizza, homemade rye and raisin breads, homemade pasta sheets (to be thawed and quickly cut on the machine), and scads of other stuff, like grated cheeses and wild blueberries.

"If you're going through hell, keep going."

- Winston Churchill



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SAMANTHAF92's Photo SAMANTHAF92 SparkPoints: (2,305)
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8/1/13 1:55 A

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I love to cook everything all in one day and then freeze it for later dates. This sunday Imade a tons of things:
Spagehitti Squash Lasgana
Regular Lasgana
Brocilli Brussel Chicken Pasta
Sheppards Pie
Chicken Pot Pie
Meatballs
Chocolate Zuchinni Muffins
Apple Muffins
Blueberry Muffins
Egg muffins

As you can tell I had a busy Sunday lol! I know I should be good for meals for a while but what are some of your favourite freezer meals? I always love new ideas!

Thanks Samantha

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EKNIGHT5's Photo EKNIGHT5 SparkPoints: (2,383)
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5/26/13 8:01 A

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I keep my freezer filled with all kinds of different meals we eat out of the freezer all the time so easy with the microwave. There is three of us and a lot of my recipes make quite a few servings, sure saves a lot of time and mess. I have al kinds of desserts, donuts and pancakes (mmm pumpkin pancakes )to.

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DIVAMAMAOFTWO's Photo DIVAMAMAOFTWO SparkPoints: (13,203)
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5/22/13 7:36 P

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My family loves this freezer pleaser chicken pot pies recipe.. you can make 2 at a time:

http://www.freezerdinner.com/recipes/fre
ezer-chicken-pot-pie/

I also like to freeze spaghetti sauce ahead of time and take some out to add to spaghetti squash or pasta... yum!


YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE GREAT TO START, BUT YOU HAVE TO START TO BE GREAT!!!

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me! Phillipians 4:13.


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LADYKATHLEEN5 SparkPoints: (29,144)
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4/21/13 11:45 A

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Chicken broth - whole chicken & lots of veggies

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DRAGON-CHICK's Photo DRAGON-CHICK Posts: 2,065
4/14/13 11:07 A

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When ground beef is on sale, I get a lot, sometimes add ground turkey, too.
I brown it with minced onion on worcestershire sauce, and freeze in many small containers to be used as add-ins to rice or pasta, or I make a cheeseburger wrap from time to time.



My journey towards better health and better writing:
mfwrites.wordpress.com/
Please come cheer me on! Never mind - remind me to blog!!!


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CBEVNOW's Photo CBEVNOW Posts: 6,318
2/26/13 9:49 P

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Spaghetti sauce some for the freezer. UMM

Im starting to take control of my life today. I will take care of me, love my self., be good to my self, I am strong, i can do this.


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HEALTHWIZARD4U's Photo HEALTHWIZARD4U Posts: 66
2/26/13 5:55 A

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here is a site for some good chicken freezer to crockpot meals!

http://whenthedinnerbellrings.blogspot.c
om/2011/06/super-easy-way-to-getting-m
eals-ready.html

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KEEPITSIMPLE_'s Photo KEEPITSIMPLE_ SparkPoints: (60,093)
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2/18/13 1:00 P

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Saturday I made another batch of sausage soup, and experimented with chili. The freezer is almost full again.

Next weekend, veggie beef stew!

Dear Lord, set my sights on You and Your great attributes. Help me to live in Your presence, dependent on Your guidance each day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

♥♥¸.•*´¨`*•. ¸♥¨`*•.¸♥.•*´¨`*•.¸♥
Each new day is a blessing!
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KEEPITSIMPLE_'s Photo KEEPITSIMPLE_ SparkPoints: (60,093)
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11/15/12 12:08 P

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Last Saturday I made the sausage soup and froze quite a bit. It turned out wonderful, and much more than planned.

This Saturday we'll be smoking the Boston Butt, ribs, and chicken quarters. Mmmmm, mmm. I guess that will be it for a little while, I believe the freezer will be full!

Dear Lord, set my sights on You and Your great attributes. Help me to live in Your presence, dependent on Your guidance each day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

♥♥¸.•*´¨`*•. ¸♥¨`*•.¸♥.•*´¨`*•.¸♥
Each new day is a blessing!
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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
11/10/12 11:04 P

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Well I am finally restocking my freezer. Today I made Lasagnas, and Chili. I cheated with the Lasagnas, I used a store-bought sauce, but Dr'ed it up with lots of veggies and some hamburger. I made 12 pans of Lasagna with a little sauce leftover. Then the chili was about 10 meals worth.

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11/3/12 8:29 P

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I've been planning my next batch cooking to feed the freezer. I've also been working on my Pantry Challenge, to eat from the pantry first and meal plan around ingredients on hand, with the exception of fresh produce. We have pretty much cleaned out the freezer, and we are ready to fill it back up. Out with the old and in with the new. On the few weekends available in November, we will be re-stocking the freezer with Sausage Soup, Beef/veggie crockpot stew/soup, and smoking a Boston Butt and chicken quarters. That will give us more variety with our spag. sauce, and other meat/seafood for grilling. I'm still working on the dry goods in the pantry, using up what's on hand first, so I'll be planning other small meals around those items as well. I don't enjoy cooking daily, so I do appreciate my own frozen foods so much. I even like my own soups over any others. I never though I'd see that day!

Dear Lord, set my sights on You and Your great attributes. Help me to live in Your presence, dependent on Your guidance each day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

♥♥¸.•*´¨`*•. ¸♥¨`*•.¸♥.•*´¨`*•.¸♥
Each new day is a blessing!
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STAHLKL SparkPoints: (337)
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10/23/12 1:47 P

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When I freeze meat I wrap it in cling wrap and then aluminum foil--you can write on the foil what it is and the freeze date. I want to get a chest freezer and start doing some freeze cooking and preping meals and freezing ahead as well--Thanks for the great ideas!

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ODIELUV Posts: 24
10/22/12 3:43 P

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On Saturday night I look/think of three meals I want to cook on Sunday to freeze. My grandmother watches my son 2-3 nights a week when me and his father are working. So I feel better knowing that on those nights there is something for them to eat. I have found what ends up happening is a regular recipe makes enough for two cassoroles/soups to be frozen. My gram and son eat like birds. So by dividing what i make into 2 seperate conatainers I have 6 meals (2 of each recipe). I have one for them at night and then me and his dad have leftovers the next day for lunch. And the other container usually gets used the next week when his dad is home with him 1 night a week and again leftovers for lunch the next day. I still have two other meals prepapred in freezer and when sunday comes i do three more meals. it starts to accumulate where about the 3rd or 4th week i just have to make one recipe for the week so i get a break from cooking on sundays. You start to know what comes together quickly and it makes grocery shopping easier

Its a daily struggle but consistency not perfection will carry me to my goal....
Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words.
Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions.
Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits.
Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character.
Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny."









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10/21/12 8:38 A

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CRAZYNDCOOK, Pot pies sound like a great idea. I'll have to add that to my experimentation list! Happy cooking! I hope you feel up to it soon.

Dear Lord, set my sights on You and Your great attributes. Help me to live in Your presence, dependent on Your guidance each day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

♥♥¸.•*´¨`*•. ¸♥¨`*•.¸♥.•*´¨`*•.¸♥
Each new day is a blessing!
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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
10/20/12 6:36 P

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FITTOBE2, un-thawing is freezing. LOL, you just reminded me of working at the restaurant. We always said we needed to un-thaw something. One person always pointed out that it was freezing. I am going to try and convince hubby that we need a smoker in the next year. I have had so much smoked salmon at work I have been craving it.

Me, well I have been lazy this year. I didn't do many casseroles this summer. I see my stack of frozen meals is dwindling too. I do have some frozen tomatoes that need to be made into sauce and lasagnas, also some beef stew meat that I set aside for making pot pies, but I am not feeling up to it.

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10/18/12 10:03 P

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I enjoy making my own soups and stews and freezing them in appropriate serving size containers for a meal for two, or one to take to work. I also like to marinate and grill chicken breasts to freeze then just take out and slice for salads, heat up and add a veggie, add to the crockpot/soup. We have recently purchased a smoker and have experimented with smoked chicken quarters which we have frozen. I pack 2 quarters per pkg, and we have a quick meal, just add a side. We plan on experimenting further with ribs, boston butts, etc. I love having my own homemade meals to un-thaw and enjoy. I look forward to further experiments.

Dear Lord, set my sights on You and Your great attributes. Help me to live in Your presence, dependent on Your guidance each day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

♥♥¸.•*´¨`*•. ¸♥¨`*•.¸♥.•*´¨`*•.¸♥
Each new day is a blessing!
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WICCANWIDGET's Photo WICCANWIDGET SparkPoints: (2,245)
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10/12/12 7:40 A

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I was just looking though sale ads here where I live and I see potatoes are on huge sale. Does anyone freeze whole potatoes and how do you do it? I was thinking of making up some twice bake potatoes and freezing but if I buy a couple of 10# bags I am afraid they will rot before I use them all.



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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
9/4/12 12:23 A

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Again the lazy cook in me hit again. I never pre-plan meals, so I cook my meals from frozen because there is no way I will remember to take them out the night before or I would have changed my mind. For 5x9" pan I cook them for about 1 1/2 hours. The only thing so far that I found that takes longer is meatloaf. If I am in a hurry then I will microwave, I have done this with chili, soups and even lasagna.

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SONGBIRD1218's Photo SONGBIRD1218 Posts: 71
8/15/12 9:49 P

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I have always wanted to try freezer cooking, and am thinking about attempting it next week. My question is, when you are take the meal out of the freezer, do you need to thaw it first, or can you immediately start reheating it in the microwave, range top, or oven?

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SEMG498's Photo SEMG498 Posts: 95
8/9/12 9:03 A

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emoticon for all the ideas!

CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
6/22/12 1:06 A

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As a professional cook I know that you should cool them down before putting into the freezer. As it does partially thaw surrounding foods, it raises the temperature of the freezer making it work harder to cool down again, creating an environment that bacteria can grow again before re-freezing. And things becoming partly thawed isn't good for them.

But get this, I was told by a health inspector that I shouldn't be putting hot foods into the reach-in refrigerators until it was cool, I was actually told to leave it at room temp, until cool, then refrigerate. As long as it was refrigerated in 2 hours it was fine to keep serving as long as it was re-heated properly.

If you aren't putting big pots of soup into the freezer, as long as they are in portion sizes, they will cool faster. If making multiple pans of meals then I do put them into the frig to cool down before putting them in the freezer. But smaller portions I just put them into the freezer.

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NUTCRACKER8 SparkPoints: (8,617)
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6/21/12 8:18 P

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I have never heard that you have to wait until food cools completely in order to freeze it--in fact I've heard that you should place it in the freezer while hot for the sake of food safety, although of course it will take extra energy from the freezer to do that. Of course, the heat might also affect already-frozen food in the freezer. I can't remember now where I heard that advice. I've frozen many, many meals while still hot, and it has worked out fine. Note, however, that since I'm a vegetarian, I have never frozen meat.

While looking for info on safe freezing, I saw a suggestion of cooling food in a basin of ice water to cool it quickly for freezing.

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SHERMOR13's Photo SHERMOR13 SparkPoints: (6,584)
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5/27/12 4:39 P

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Thanks for some super ideas. I usually freeze veggies through the summer to have more fresh ones in winter. I also do lots of cooking & then freezing to pull out and serve later. It can be a life saver!

Have an awesome day!

Sherli


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ROCKRUNNER404's Photo ROCKRUNNER404 Posts: 2,013
5/26/12 10:32 P

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emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Today I fed my freezer some corn. They put it on sale here for 13 cents per ear so I bought some to eat for a dinner one night, and some extra to freeze since I would be cooking it anyway. I used this little tool called a corn zipper to strip the corn from the cobs, it worked very well. We really only eat corn once in awhile, but it will be nice to open a bag from the freezer instead of a can next time we do.

Edited by: ROCKRUNNER404 at: 5/26/2012 (22:33)
~~Amanda~~

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ROCKRUNNER404's Photo ROCKRUNNER404 Posts: 2,013
5/20/12 12:11 P

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emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

I had some Strawberries in the refrigerator that I bought on sale (tons of good deals on them at this time of year). I looked into how to properly freeze them and wanted to pass this along!

1) Wash strawberries and remove stems or caps
2) Allow to drain and blot dry with paper towel
3) Place them in single layer on cookie sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and place in freezer for approximately 24 hours to freeze individually. You may then transfer them to an airtight container to freeze them together.


~~Amanda~~

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SHELLSHERE2011's Photo SHELLSHERE2011 SparkPoints: (2,184)
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5/3/12 2:02 A

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Wow, these are some great ideas, especially the one about the straw to suck out the air!! I make chili in my crockpot and put it into ziploc one cup containers but then I wrap the container in heavy aluminum foil before I freeze them, and all I have to do is take one out to put in my lunch box for dinner. I heard that you can't freeze something until it's completely cooled, this is so time consuming, I wish there was another way.

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
3/19/12 10:54 P

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It has been a long time since I have been on Spark. But a list of things that freeze and don't freeze would be helpful.

Cheese freezes well if you want it for melting. I always have cheddar and mozza shredded in my freezer.

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
3/19/12 10:36 P

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It has been a long time since I have been on Spark. But a list of things that freeze and don't freeze would be helpful.

Cheese freezes well if you want it for melting. I always have cheddar and mozza shredded in my freezer.

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GOOSIEMOON's Photo GOOSIEMOON SparkPoints: (171,066)
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11/22/11 8:56 A

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What a great idea!

"Don't let the fear of the time it will take to accomplish something stand in the way of your doing it. The time will pass anyway; we might just as well put that passing time to the best possible use."

~ Earl Nightingale


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HERE2BME Posts: 2,461
11/12/11 11:19 A

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I am new to the team and am wowed at everything that can be frozen! This sounds great to me. I was wondering if anyone has has list of what doesn't freeze so well, as someone mention cheese doesn't.

Thank you in advance!

Grace is:

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BLUEROSE's Photo BLUEROSE Posts: 2,800
6/16/11 12:40 P

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That sounds wonderful. Maybe you can share your bread recipe in this forum.



Edited by: BLUEROSE at: 6/16/2011 (12:42)
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I walked my 2nd 5k in 78 minutes!!!!!!

If you have no sense of humor, you will never laugh!

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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
6/12/11 6:43 P

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Today is carbs for the freezer. I am making bread, 6 white, 6 multigrain. They will all go to the freezer once they are sliced tomorrow.

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CJGASSER's Photo CJGASSER SparkPoints: (10,821)
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6/4/11 3:58 P

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I love cooking and freezing lunches. I often work right past lunch and then I am super hungry, if I have a portion control meal in the freezer, I am safe and satisfied!



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BLUEROSE's Photo BLUEROSE Posts: 2,800
4/7/11 11:23 P

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wow...That's awesome, crazy cook. I am getting hungry just reading all of that. I aspire to do the frozen meals...always get sidetracked.

A mind is a terrible thing to waste or try to control...

I walked my 2nd 5k in 78 minutes!!!!!!

If you have no sense of humor, you will never laugh!

BlueRose


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GOOSIEMOON's Photo GOOSIEMOON SparkPoints: (171,066)
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4/7/11 4:30 P

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Great tips! Thanks!

"Don't let the fear of the time it will take to accomplish something stand in the way of your doing it. The time will pass anyway; we might just as well put that passing time to the best possible use."

~ Earl Nightingale


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CRAZYNDNCOOK's Photo CRAZYNDNCOOK Posts: 633
3/31/11 12:39 A

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Hi, I just joined the group, but I love making food ahead and freezing it. I actually got started a couple summers ago when the garden was putting out too many veggies and I needed to do something with them, and I had enough frozen veggies already, so I started making casseroles and lasagnas.

BTW, I am a school cook for the past 3 years, was a restaurant cook for 3 years before that, an at-home mom and am a trained Professional Cook. I found I was getting to tired after work to cook so I started making freezer meals, so now I can come home and pop something into the oven, and be eating something hot in 1 1/2 hours. Yes a long time but it is better than standing to cook a fresh meal for 1/2 hour.

I use disposable 5x9" foil pans with lids. I get them at the restaurant supply store for about $28 for 50, I was paying $6 for 5 at the grocery store.

I make pasta using ground beef, shredded zucchini, shredded carrots, small diced onion and celery, pasta sauce, and seasonings. I usually use my roaster oven to make sauce these days, the last time I made this, I made 11 pans of lasagna and 7 pans of pasta sauce. I make chili and freeze it in the pans too. I have froze carrot cake, zucchini muffins, assorted casseroles and Swiss Chard Rolls (Cabbage Rolls using Swiss Chard, alot easier).

I do have pics of some of these, including instructional pics of making Chard Rolls.

I use almost 100 pans in a year.

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BLUEROSE's Photo BLUEROSE Posts: 2,800
3/28/11 10:29 A

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Thanks for all the great ideas, Kimber.

A mind is a terrible thing to waste or try to control...

I walked my 2nd 5k in 78 minutes!!!!!!

If you have no sense of humor, you will never laugh!

BlueRose


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KIMBERLOVESTMBG SparkPoints: (752)
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3/26/11 2:06 P

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Oh, for those having trouble with foil sticking, etc:

I totally agree with the ziploc freezer bag/straw idea. I use this when I make whole quiches. One quiche fits perfectly in a freezer bag.

I buy disposable foil pans for casseroles that call for 8 x 8 or 13 x 9 pans. I also buy disposable loaf pans if I am making a bunch of meatloaf. I also buy the disposable sheet pans for flash freezing - and you can put a layer of heavy duty foil/cooking spray on them and use them several times like this.

For lasagna, etc that needs 13 x 9 pans, I cook or assemble it in the disposable pan. After it cools, I spray nonstick spray on the underside of heavy duty foil and top it with that. Then I wrap the whole thing in press & seal and write what it is on the top and sides.

Fo 8 x 8 pans (like mac & cheese) I top with sprayed foil, then put them in gallon freezer bags. Two will usually fit in a bag, and since there's no food touching them, they can be reused.

I have a foodsaver but I only use it to reseal original packaging. It's ok for making boiling bags (used it once to make custom omelettes for a crowd at camping - just put all the ingredients in, seal, and write the person's name on the outside). But it didn't work too well. Quart sized freezer bags did much better. Don't use regular storage bags - they don't work!

:) Kimber

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3/26/11 1:51 P

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I have been doing freezer cooking for many years, but am just now working on eating healthy. I can give lots of ideas on freezer cooking!!

First of all, there is a great E-book called the Easy Does It Diet. You don't need to buy it, but the concept is wonderful: combine freezer cooking and healthy eating to eliminate all those frozen, processed "diet" meals you buy at the grocery store. You use entrée' sized freezer container (I got mine at the dollar store) and add in small amounts of a lean protein and maybe a sauce. Then you fill at least half the container with your choice of frozen veggies, and top with a pat of butter.

For example, maybe you have a recipe for a healthy, low fat turkey meatloaf. While you are making them anyway for dinners, make an extra. Slice it into lunch sized portions, add to individual containers. Fill the containers with frozen veggies and a little butter. Seal and freeze. I also like to put my containers into gallon freezer bags since the containers don't seem to be too airtight. Since food never touches the freezer bags, I reuse them.

I am at least 400 lbs. so I really need to watch my sodium. I am trying to avoid as much processed food as possible. I like to make huge batches of spaghetti sauce, and I put some of it in smaller bags for pizza kits. Pizza kits are GREAT for portioning!! Since I love Italian sausage but it's high in fat, I can brown it all up, portion them into snack sized bags, then put all those bags into a freezer bag. When I want pizza, I already have cheese, sausage, etc. portioned in the freezer.

I also like to make homemade hot pockets and Uncrustables for the kids. Uncrustables are easy to make, and by doing your own you could use sugar free jelly, low sodium peanut butter, etc. I wrap them in press & seal, then put them in a large freezer bag. I like eating them frozen!

Another idea is using a bento box for lunches....since they are done by volume, portion control is built in!!

Email me if I can help with anything...and I definitely need teen-friendly recipes that can freeze ahead!!!

Thanks!!!

Kimber :)

SAM11ROCKS Posts: 3
3/10/11 11:30 A

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I just made a new dish last night that I think would work frozen and re-heated later on. I got it out of the Clean Eating Cook Book but here's the gist of it...

Turkey and Brown Rice Meatloaf

1 lb of lean ground turkey
1 cup of brown rice (I used the uncle ben's ready rice to make it easier)
3/4 cup of fat free cream cheese
1/2 cup of chopped celery
1/3 cup of chopped onion
1 tbl spn of low sodium soy sauce
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp of pepper
1 tsp oregano, dried
1 tsp sage, dried

Mix all of the ingredients together and put in a regular greased loaf pan. Bake at 350 for an hour and then let sit for 10 minutes before cutting. Makes 6 servings.
My husband who hates cream cheese didn't even know that it was in the dish and he loved how juicy it was. Goes great with baked potato or sweet potato.



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