Adventures in Freezer Cooking
Are you a fan of freezer cooking? Freezer cooking and I have evolved in our relationship over the years.
Growing up, we ate a lot of meals from the freezer, but mostly because my mom just loves to freeze everything and anything (love you mom, you’re perfect!) Once, a few years ago, I had a freezer cooking day with friends when we lived in Ohio (love you, Dayton friends!), but we never got around to doing it again.
I forgot all about it for a while, then my friend Joy (who runs the fantastic Facebook group called Fearless Freezer Cooking
) asked if I wanted to join her freezer co-op here in GA. I joined for a few months and then decided it wasn’t a great fit for our family at the time.
After all of this, I began to figure out what I like about freezer cooking and what I don’t. I like to freeze things that I can just pull out of the freezer in the afternoon and be ready for the evening meal. I like to freeze things that can thaw quickly and easily. I don’t like freezer meals that I have to put in the fridge the day before to thaw. I am all about the convenience of freezer cooking, not just the stocking up part.
So as I’ve been preparing for baby #2 (any day now would be great, baby, really), I’ve finally figured out what I like stocked in my freezer. And that’s what I want to share with you today. I don’t know if it’s just me, but freezer cooking seems to be a hot topic lately (just search for it on Pinterest, I mean, really).
Firstly, let’s talk breakfast items. I love having muffins, pancakes and waffles stocked in the freezer that I can easily defrost in the microwave, toaster or on the counter. Most baked goods freeze really well if they’ve been fully-baked and will thaw easily at room temperature.
Next up, breads and doughs. I really enjoy having frozen, uncooked pizza dough in the freezer as well as fully-baked and sliced loaves of bread. These are family meal staples for us. As you know, I tend to substitute at least half of the flour in most recipes with whole wheat or white whole wheat flour (just a reminder since this is not reflected in some of the links).
Lastly, full meals or meal components. Let me say again that I like meals that I can put right into the oven from the freezer or meal components that can be easily thawed and added to meals. My husband loves having these burritos on hand that he can take to work for quick lunches if there aren’t any leftovers around. My favorite item here is the turkey meatballs- no thawing required! You can broil them or brown them in a pan, then use them in whatever application you’d like.
I really went all out this time with my freezer cooking- I usually just make extra batches here or there and refill it gradually. There are lots of different methods of freezer cooking, but I can guarantee that you’ll find one that works for you. It really is nice to have a few things on hand in a pinch of you haven’t thought about dinner or you find out you’re getting a few extra guests.
That’s just a few of my thoughts on the subject. I’d like to make freezer recipes more available in the future here on the blog- I’m sure I’ll be doing more of it as our family grows. There are tons of other great freezer cooking resources out there. Feel free to share your favorite websites, books or recipes in the comment section below!