The Once a Month Mom Whole Foods March menu included six dinners. We decided that the rack of pork wasn’t our style, so we left it out.

I forgot to mention that we didn’t handle the chicken the way the recipes describe. My friends and I like buying whole chickens and cooking them in a slow cooker. So we bought four chickens, cooked them, and then Kate and Jaclyn deboned and shredded the chickens. I’m so grateful that we did this as a team because I hate deboning chicken! We were able to use the broth from cooking the chickens in our soup recipes which saved money and improved flavor.

Crockpot Corned Beef and Cabbage
Corned beef and roast beef were the same price, so the other ladies chose to do a normal pot roast. I thought I’d be adventurous and try the corned beef. Jason really liked it, but I regretted not having a traditional roast.

Some meals make a lot of sense as a freezer meal, but this isn’t one of them. The potatoes, carrots, cabbage, and onions are practically non-perishable if stored correctly, so putting them in the freezer to take up lots of space seemed counterproductive.

Spring Minestrone Soup
Well now I know that 24 servings of this soup won’t fit in my pot or the bigger pot I had borrowed. This would have been a super-quick, easy soup if I hadn’t had to cook it in 3 batches because my pot was so small. I will definitely make it again, but either with fewer servings or a new pot! We used just two cans of artichokes to save time and money. The pesto added a lot, so don’t forget to add it when you heat the soup up.

Chicken Stir Fry with Sugar Snap Peas

Jason ate almost all of this. I think I’ve been spoiled by my dad’s wonderful stir-fries because I didn’t enjoy it as much. I also could have been dealing with my pregnancy Asian food aversion. So strange because Chinese and Japanese are normally among my favorite foods, but when I’m pregnant I don’t even want to think about it.

Chicken Tikka Masala

This recipe made everyone’s list of freezer meals we must cook again. Even though this was supposed to make 8 servings for our family, it stretched much further because it was so flavorful it didn’t take much to make a meal with rice. I think it was a very effective freezer meal because cooking the sauce takes a little time but it multiplies and freezes well. We had already cooked the chicken, so we added the marinade to the cooked chicken and froze it. Because it’s all mixed together at the end, I didn’t notice a difference. (I’m not as critical of Indian food as I am of Japanese.)

Fifteen Bean Soup with Pork

I had an extra ham bone left over so I used that instead of the pork chop. (Actually, I added the ham bone, pork chop, and bacon, then realized that was silly, so I fished the pork chops back out and ate them separately.) This was really good bean soup! Jason took it to school for lunch, so I didn’t eat much of it, but we’ll do it again when the weather is more cooperative for soups.

5 thoughts on “Freezer Cooking Dinners

  1. That’s funny because ethnic food is a huge favorite of mine during pregnancy, more so than usual. I’m all about asian, indian and tomorrow Craig is taking me out for Ethiopian in DC which I’m so excited about (and hope Lucy cooperates for). I’ll definitely be trying that chicken marsala recipe as I’ve tried several other recipes for that dish that were a lot of work with not a great result which is the really the opposite of what I’m shooting for 🙂

    But I understand about being spoiled. My mom was great at cooking german/hungarian food as is her mom, who only came over from Germany when she got married. Even following their recipes, it’s not the same. Craig thinks it’s good but he hasn’t been spoiled like I have. My mom learned some awesome Korean recipes when we lived there but luckily, I have had some success duplicating those.

  2. So I made it last night as a test for my big freezer cook before the baby comes event and it was delicious. But I’m wondering how you froze it. When you say you added the marinade to the cooked chicken and froze it, does that mean you froze the sauce separately then added the two bags together, heated, then added the cream and last few ingredients? I’m trying to come up with the freezing method with the least steps since I don’t normally mind doing a few things later, I like to keep post baby meals very simply since I probably won’t be the one putting it together.

    I was thinking I could either make it all and freeze it (although that would probably require my buying fresh chicken since I don’t want to thaw, cook then refreeze the chicken and I’m not sure how a sauce with heavy cream would freeze) or freeze the sauce and add the marinade to uncooked chicken and freeze in a separate bag, then cook the chicken and add the sauce and finish it (more work but perhaps less of a freezer taste?) Thoughts?

    1. Did you look at her freezer recipe in the Google document? It sounds like you are trying to convert the original non-freezer recipe, but I could be misunderstanding your question.

      We followed the freezer recipe for the sauce and it froze well even with the heavy cream. Because we cooked our chicken in slow cookers, we just took the cooked, shredded portion for this meal and added the marinade to the bag. To reheat, I thawed both bags, heated the chicken, and then added the sauce and brought it all to a simmer. It didn’t look like chicken tikka masala, but it tasted great!

      If your other cook likes to grill, I think it would be best to follow the recipe by freezing the marinaded raw chicken and grilling it as kabobs. The sauce would of course need to be separate. If you want convenience more than authenticity, marinading cooked cubed chicken is the way to go. I would still keep the sauce separate since the reheat times might vary.

      If this still isn’t clear, I’m willing to try to explain again!

  3. Yeah, I was definitely trying to go off the original recipe. Somehow I totally missed the multiple tabs at the bottom so I didn’t really understand the point of that document at all – pregnancy brain! Thanks for clarifying, I got it now.

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