Freezer Cooking Day: The Final Tally (and come link up your accomplishments, too!)

We finished our Freezer Cooking at 12:30 p.m yesterday! We didn’t quite get everything done on the Master List, but we counted up and had made enough  for 45 dinners for our families! Here’s our final tally:

::Spaghetti Pie x 6

::Barbecued Meatballs x 6

::Baked Ziti x 6

::Southwest Roll-ups x 7

::Chicken and Rice Casserole x 6

::Beef, Bean and Tomato Burritos x6

::Chicken Spaghetti (from The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl) x 8

Considering we made all of that in a little over 3 hours, it was a productive morning! And each of us took home enough food to last us at least 3-4 weeks!

A big thank you to my mom for helping with the children while we worked in the kitchen; we couldn’t have done it without her. She also stayed to help clean up so that my kitchen was pretty much in pristine condition by 1 p.m.

Yes, I think I like this joint freezer cooking thing. It’s so much easier and more efficient than doing it alone. Plus, I’m not left with a mound of dirty dishes and a house that’s pretty much destroyed!

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Did you have a chance to do any baking or cooking this week? If so, post about it on your blog and leave your link below to your direct blo g post. I’d love it especially if you could share pictures and recipes so we can get ideas for our next Freezer Cooking Day! And I’m guessing many others would be inspired as well.

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Comments

  1. Kelly says

    Congratulations! This was my first official freezer cooking day. I have done some small-scale freezer cooking but not nearly as many as the 21 meals I did yesterday. I was amazed at how quickly I was able to get through everything. With a little planning ahead, I was able to accomplish a lot. Thanks for your advice, encouragement and recipes from your website; I couldn’t have done it without you!

  2. says

    I just love that your whole family got involved. My sis in love and I are planning on doing it next month. Of all the days to not have my camera, someone borrowed ours, but I did a little vlog for fun (talking beans…lol) in the midst of a crazy work day.

  3. Pauline says

    Thank you for the idea for doing freezer meals. I gathered a group of girls and start doing the freezer meals exchange. It works great. I love it. Have you every tried doing freezer meals exchange?

    • says

      We’re actually considering that soon with a few blog readers/friends in my area. I think it sounds like great fun!

    • Mandy says

      @Pauline, We have a freezer meal exchange where I live…LOVE it!! It’s what really inspired me to do more freezer cooking. It’s really helpful to my DH & DD becuase I travel for work, so having meals on hand is one less thing they have to worry about when I’m gone.

  4. says

    Thanks Crystal for these inspiring posts.

    Since my family has gone vegan/veggie… we haven’t done much of the freezer cooking. I plan on doing one soon, and will let you know how it turns out.

    I’m sure that I am not the only vegan/veggie reader on your blog! :)

    • says

      @RACHEL,

      I’m a vegetarian, too! My hubs is so not. I do lots of recipes on my blog that are split in the middle and finished half vegetarian & half meat eater :) Also, have you tried Better Than Bouillon? Amazing stuff! Even my meat-eater loves it so gravies and what not I only make vegetarian and he loves them as well.

      Connie

      • Jaime says

        @Kelly, Yay! Another one! I eat mostly vegan although I will slip a little cheese or eggs in sometimes! Hubby has horrible cholesterol and this has helped him so much! If you’re looking for recipes there is a book out there by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin that has lots of options and a delicious shepherd’s pie recipe (my meat eating friends ask for it all the time). I’ve got to be honest that the name of the book and some parts of it use language that I don’t consider appropriate but some of the recipes are delicious. If you want some recipes I can email to you too. :)

      • says

        @Kelly,

        Hello to my friends who eat with compassion! :)
        Kelly- In the spirit of this website, I would have to recommend the free recipe site for veggie/vegans. It is http://www.vegweb.com. I have found a pleathera of great recipes and even some coupons! :) Also, http://www.thekindlife.com is very helpful.

        The ability to be a frugal vegan feels like a calling. I am gonna try as mentioned to implement a freezer day for my vegan cuisine… I’ll post about it on my blog if I do (so you might wanna follow me to keep tabs!)
        Thanks for considering a more compassionate way of eating!

    • brookeb says

      @RACHEL, We’re neither, but we try to eat at least half of each week’s meals veggie-only. I’ve made sweet potato burritos and vegetarian moussaka (from allrecipes.com) for freezer-cooking before, and both turned out great. Either would only take a dairy substitution to be made vegan, too.

    • says

      My daughter says they have lions on them! We got them for a steal off of Craigslist, but next time, we’re going for something with a little less design on them! :)

      • melody says

        @Crystal,
        My mom has these chairs. I hate them. (sorry) but to us as kids, the scary lion face was too much! She has had them for 25+ years and hasn’t replaced them…I don’t know why!!!!

  5. says

    Woohoo! It feels so so good to be done with all and have a freezer full of food. Thanks for bringing everyone together for this! It makes cooking, somehow, more exciting. I’ve got to see if I can get friends in on this with me next month.

  6. says

    I’m really curious about the spaghetti pie. Do you bake it and then freeze it or freeze and then bake? I think this will be one I do for the hub’s next dinner/lunch session.

    LOVE your blog!

    Thanks!

  7. karen says

    We love PW’s Chix Spaghetti! I think it’s my kids favorite meal. It’s even better as leftovers.

  8. Christina says

    Your recipes and freezer day cooking are a inspiration to me. I’m sick with the flu/sinus infection and have no energy to cook today. I’m hoping I’m better tommorrow to get the kitchen clean and start some prep work for some dishes. Thanks!

  9. Christina says

    Can you sub cream cheese for the cottage cheese in the spaghetti pie? I have no cottage cheese in the house.

    • stacy says

      @Christina, thats how I make my spaghetti pie-with cream cheese and sour cream-quite tasty!! Not sure how it would freeze though, I haven’t tried to freeze it yet.

  10. Jaime says

    You inspired me to try this for the first time! I actually did 3 pans of baked pasta yesterday. Today I made french bread rolls, waffles, chili, refried beans and burritos. Tomorrow I’m going to finish up with some whole wheat french bread!

  11. Rae says

    Great job! I was reading my latest All You last night and got all excited every time I saw a quote from you or your site mentioned. It must feel pretty cool to see your hard work pay off :)

  12. says

    oh I do wish I had some locals who were interested in doing a joint freezer meal oamc with me!
    I started up a new side blog for kitchen related posts like recipes and oamc. I didn’t do oamc yet but will do a few things this week. I still have some leftover from december!

  13. says

    What a fabulous idea and you guys got done pretty quickly. I don’t have that many friends or interact with that many people in order for this to be effective, but boy it does sound wonderful. … Now I’m hungry. LOL

  14. Laura J says

    The Southwest Roll-ups is one of my favorites, hands down :). Whenever we have tacos, the leftover meat gets made into these. I always have the filling on hand (we LOVE Mexican) and I make about 8 of these at a time. Four of them are toddler sized for my 4 year old (corn tortilla sized) and the rest is for me :). To me, these taste better once they are frozen and baked in the oven. It’s enough to have them for lunch 1x a week…which we ate the last ones yesterday :(. Thanks for this wonderful freezer meal!

  15. dedra says

    I am new to freezer cooking. How much do you put together? What do you freeze, what do you add later, etc.? Any tips?

    • Mandy says

      @dedra,
      I found “Don’t Panic: Dinner’s in the Freezer” and “30 Meals in One Day” to be very helpful when I got started. They have some good information at the beginning on what freezes well, and things that may not. They also give organization and shopping ideas. See if they are available at the library, unless you just fall in love with the recipes.

  16. brc says

    Do you prepare and assemble the entire spaghetti pie before freezing or do you just make the crust then assemble when ready to cook? Thanks. It’s an impressive and inspiring list of items you all prepared!

  17. says

    Wow, that’s impressive, I just did a bunch, but only 20 meals total! It’s great to have a full freezer :0)

  18. says

    LOVE the freezer cooking. THANK YOU and Fishmama so much for detailing your plan and all the tips! WONDERFUL! I am planning another cooking day with a friend soon and using a couple of the recipes you mentioned. God Bless. xoxo Janna

  19. says

    How does the pasta hold up in the freezer? I’ve had trouble with it. Do you have any tips or secrets? Thanks!!

    • Mandy says

      @Sandi,
      I’ve read if you cook the pasta 2 minutes less than the package directions, it holds up better. Things like lasagna and manicotti noodles usually don’t need to be cooked beforehand.

  20. Sheree says

    I am inspired. Trying to gather a group of family members to do this. How do you decide who brings what and how much? Or does one person buy everything and you split the cost? Thanks!!!!

  21. says

    Great job! I had to skip cooking this month due to the chaos that has ensued but I can’t wait to do it in June (honestly the next time I will be able how sad).

  22. Mandy says

    I had a three-day cooking fest…well, it equated to one full day when it was all said and done. Here’s what I made:
    1 turkey (to make other items)
    2 butternut squash, turkey & feta casseroles
    3 sm pans of turkey enchiladas
    1 batch of pancake mix
    18 black bean burritos
    3 asparagus & potato fritattas

    And I still have lots of turkey left…so I’ll be trying the southwest roll-ups you posted and scouring my recipe books for what else I can make next weekend with my leftovers!

    As always, thanks for the tools and inspiration to save money!

  23. says

    Wish I could get into this habit, but other commitments keep me from doing this (part-time job, going back to school, kids)! I made some peanut butter cups and a Peep sunflower cake for Easter. The candy was delicious and the cake was very cute!

    Blessings!

  24. jennifer says

    Thank you for the inspiration. We have a new freezer and I am getting ready to start freezer cooking. Last night, in the span of 1 hour, I was able to make 2 chicken and rice, 1 baked ziti, prepare taco meat for beef/bean burritoes (was out of beans so I did not make, but have all othre ingredients to add when we are ready to eat) and grill pork chops and corn for dinner last night. Wow! Might I add, I am super proud of myself! Additionally, I have a sick baby at home so it is wonderful not having to worry about dinner this week since we both work full time. Thanks again!

  25. Brandee says

    When you plan to have your freezer cooking day do you purchase items that are on sale that week (meat, pasta, etc) or do you just buy whatever you need for the recipes you are choosing to make?

  26. says

    This makes me homesick for my sisters. We live 3,000 miles from eachother! Thanks for sharing your recipes, tips and inspiration!