4 Weeks to Fill Your Freezer: Week #3 Freezer-Friendly Dinners + Shopping List

Are you ready for another week of filling your freezer? This week, we’re tackling dinners.

Here’s my plan for making Freezer-Friendly Dinners this week. Remember that you are more than welcome to substitute any or all of the recipes listed to make this what best fits with your budget and family’s preferences:

Click on the “Print This” tab at the top of the list to generate a printer-friendly list. (If you’re reading via email or a feed reader, you may need to click through to the post to print the list.)

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Comments

  1. Amber says

    Thanks for all of the freezer recipes. Yesterday we made breakfast burritos, lunch burritos and pizza pockets…this plus all of the frozen homemade baby food means the freezer is full now! (In a condo, so no extra freezer.) :)

  2. says

    Looks like some great recipes this week. I may have to use a different recipe for a few days as I don’t want to bake during our sudden hot weather. I am sure I can find something to add to the freezer though. Thanks for the great plan for dinners for the freezer.

  3. Stephanie Jones says

    I am wondering if, in the future, you would consider including in your post information about what you would serve with these meals. Particularly, the meatballs? Thanks.

    • says

      We usually serve meatballs with some type of potatoes (baked, mashed, twice-baked), fruit, steamed veggies or a salad, and sometimes some type of bread or rolls.

      • Jessica says

        Crystal,

        Do you cook the meatballs before freezing them? I’m wondering how they hold up, either way…

        Thanks!
        Jessica

        • says

          I’ve done both. If you want them to taste really fresh, I’d recommend not cooking them before freezing them.

    • Diane says

      They’re also good with brown rice or quinoa and green beans or some other veggie.

  4. says

    I put the cottage cheese and an egg in the blender with a little chopped parsley. It gives it more the texture of riccota, without the imcreased cost.

      • Julie in IN says

        Storing cottage cheese in the freezer also gives it the texture of ricotta cheese. Add a pinch of nutmeg to the cottage cheese for your Italian dishes–yummo!

  5. Danielle B says

    My husband and I have agreed that freezer cooking just isn’t for us. I hate the way almost everything tastes from the freezer. I don’t care what others say, I can always tell it’s been frozen previously. And yes, I use freezer-friendly recipes and wrap them very well. And no, it just doesn’t work for us. :-)
    However, I have been working on making mixes and breads ahead of time, and I was really surprised that I was able to make 4 mixes for pancakes in about 8 minutes last week. Such a time saver during the week!
    We’re eating from the pantry for the next ten days, but I’m going to try making the pizza dough with you and freezing it. We love your recipe and use it once or twice a month, so I’m interested to see how the dough turns out after being frozen.

    • says

      I’ll be curious to see what you think!

      Have you ever tried doing partial recipes for the freezer? Such as cooking up ground beef or chicken or marinading meat and freezing? I’d love to know if you still think you can taste the difference.

      Cookie dough is another thing that I think no one can tell a difference whether it’s fresh or frozen. But maybe some people can?

      Oh and I saw this idea on Pinterest last week and I’m itching to try it:
      http://pinterest.com/pin/248612841900042909/
      {Has anyone done something like this before? I’d love to know if it worked for you or not!}

      • Meredith says

        I don’t like meat cooked, frozen, and then reheated, either, but I do LOVE to have cookie dough in the freezer. It works like a charm and it’s so convenient to pull them out if people come over or you just want some fresh cookies;)

  6. says

    You’re so organized and your blog has been an inspiration to me over the past 3 or so years since I found you! thank you thank you :)

  7. says

    Oh Crystal..you Rock..I haven’t done freezer cooking forever and was just going to start getting back into it..I get your newsletter but haven’t paid attention to that portion of it..duh!! Thanks so much for all the recipes and ideas..I’ll definately be using them!

    In the next day or two I will be posting some easy peasy recipes for homemade “junk food” ie.. bagel bites, taquitos, hot pockets…would love to share if you want :)

  8. says

    I’m freezing BBQ pulled pork and Baked Ziti w/sausage and peppers this week. Baby should come between now and next week, so I’m doing a double inventory to make sure I have enough meals.

    I made all my freezer meatballs last week, but I don’t freeze them with sauce. Sometimes I do BBQ meatballs, sometimes sweet and sour, sometimes spaghetti, and sometimes I’ll use them in place of ground beef for chili and lasagna. I’ve found that freezing them plain makes them much more versatile. Making and freezing the sauces separately makes it even easier!

  9. K says

    Mmmmmmm….. these recipes sound delicious!

    How do you find the strength/discipline to follow through w/ freezer cooking on a consistent basis?

    I’ve not disciplined myself to do so as of yet. I do so enjoy reading about your freezer cooking experiences, however.

    Is it really that well worth the effort? (time saved, easy clean-up after each meal, etc.?)

    Keep the recipes/idea coming!

    Thx!!! :)

  10. says

    I’ve enjoyed this series even though I’ve yet to participate in any of the freezer cooking. I’ve seen several recipes I’m itching to try, particularly the waffles. I’m asking for a waffle iron for my birthday coming up in 2 weeks.

    Could you use the meatballs without the BBQ sauce…for example with spaghetti sauce instead?

    My only complaint with this series….I do my grocery shopping over the weekend….and you post the shopping list on Monday! :-(

    But at least I’ll have a list to go by whenever I decide to do these reicpes. Thanks for the inspiration.

  11. Patti says

    Not much room in my freezer but I have made my menu plans to use some of the items I already have. Today I made vegetable soup to use up some veggies and leftover roast beef. I also dried my strawberries in the dehydrator to see if I like them better than frozen. Jury is out on that one because they really were a pain to do (the pieces are either too dry or not dry enough). I ended up putting the dehydrated pieces in a freezer container in the freezer so they will keep. I did get two baskets of strawberries in one small container so that helps save space.

  12. Abra says

    I was anxiously awaiting this week’s plan today! :) I think you have more great meal choices. I’ve been wanting to try meatballs for awhile now. I am going to back up to last week and make some of the meals from last week first. They look so delicious. Thanks so much for doing this series!

  13. Kathy says

    So excited t see your list tonight. IV been printing everything off to short through and do this hopefully in June when things slow down a little. Plan on trying recipes in the mean time. Thanks so much for doing this.

  14. Heather says

    Thanks so much for putting this all together for all of us! Wish I could follow along with you day-by-day but I’m a little ADD lol. Making banana bread today, and I wanted to “make” the Italian chicken last night, but no salad dressing, so instead we have Teriyaki chicken chillin’ in the freezer :)
    Keep up the great work!

  15. Lisa says

    Thank you so much for this freezer cooking series! I’m pregnant with our 2nd child and I dont ever feel the greatest during the evenings, which keeps me from cooking, so making up these meals to freeze really helps out a bunch!

  16. Karen says

    With the lasagna, do you bake it according to the directions, freeze it and then bake it again when you’re ready to eat? Or do you prepare it, immediately freeze it and then bake it when you’re ready to eat?

  17. Beth R. says

    Thank you for the freezer lists (recipes and amount totals). Being SAH mom I often feel guilty when I don’t have time to make dinner or just too tired to do so. But being back in college (I go to school online) I often go to do my homework as soon as my husband comes home from work to watch. (The kids are 3 and 4 so I don’t get much homework done during the day). I’m going to start the freezer cooking lists so that even when I can’t make a meal b/c of schoolwork or other reason, I can. Thank you so much for your inspiration in so many areas. Your website really is a blessing!