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Sunday, March 4, 2012

Freezer meals.

Awhile ago I stumbled upon the website/blog Once a Month Mom.  It's run by group of ladies who do "bulk cooking".  They plan a menu of meals to make, freeze, then eat throughout the month.  The thought of cooking this way fascinated me, but I had 2 newborns and had absolutely zero time to do it.

The, back in December, my AMAZING friend Heather came to visit.  While she was here she made us a few freezer meals.  Or 17.  Yes, seventeen freezer meals.  I can't tell you how unbelievably awesome it was not to have to worry about dinner for a month straight.  I simply decided what we'd have in the evening and put it in the fridge to thaw overnight.  Or if I forgot, I'd choose something that thaws quickly for that evening.  It has ensured that we don't eat pancakes for dinner every single night.  As the meals dwindled, I decided that I was going to do a big "bulk cooking" session for the month of March.

As you may know, Brian decided to give up meat for Lent.  For my carnivore husband, this is a big deal.  This man will eat a plate of meat at a time and nothing else.  It's kinda gross sometimes.  I feel sorry for his digestive system.

But I digress.  While Brennan and I still eat meat, I decided that a great way to shake up our dinner menu would be to do a "bulk cooking" session vegetarian style.  I scoured the Once a Month Mom vegetarian menus and came up with a few things that I thought Brian might might eat (and that sounded good to me) and chose a few from Pinterest and friends.  I decided to double almost all of the recipes and made the big giant grocery list.  One giant grocery bill and a counter full of groceries later, I was set to go.

It has taken me four days of cooking on and off to get them all done.  The good news is that each night we ate one of the meals that I was currently cooking, so it wasn't too much extra work.  Here are a few of the recipes and my thoughts on them (if we've tried them!)

(Chickpea Croquettes - Photo from here)
  • Chickpea Croquettes
  • Crustless Zucchini and Basil Mini-Quiches
  • Black Bean Salsa Quesadillas - Seriously, so insanely delicious.  I can't wait to eat them again.  I'm just hoping that they bake up nice and crispy in the oven and taste as good as they did fresh off the griddle.
  • Homemade "Panera" Mac'n'Cheese - Eh, it was OK.  I'll probably try a different version next time.  There are a million different ones on Pinterest.
  • Crockpot Falafel
  • Lentil and Rice Ground Beef Substitute - I made this to try in spaghetti or other Italian dishes.  It tasted pretty good when it came out of the oven, but I bet it won't pass the Brian test.  Doesn't quite taste "beefy" enough.
  • Cheese Beer Soup - I got this recipe from a vegetarian friend.  It's delish.  If you're interested in it, let me know and I can post the recipe.
  • Pasta, Grilled Veggies, and Hummus - This was an idea from a friend.  It's exactly what it sounds like.  Haven't tried it, but I know it'll be a hit.  Hubby loves him some hummus.  So does mama.
  • White Bean Enchiladas   - Delish.
  • Vegetable Chowder - This was really good.  And you could easily "skinny it up" with skim milk and low fat cheese and I bet it would still be hearty.  
  • I also made a big batch of oatmeal (recipe courtesy of The Heir to Blair) and put it in the fridge in small servings so I can have my daily oatmeal and save time.  
I have 22 meals in my freezer, plus four batches of ground beef substitute to be creative with.  We'll add fresh veggies and salads to meals that feel like they need something extra.  I'm so excited to have a freezer full of meals for the next month so that I don't have to scramble to figure out dinner!


  1. Black Bean Salsa Quesadillas sound awesome- I have some leftover black beans from our Friday I will be making your suggestion tomorrow for my and Lynnae's lunch!

    1. They're sooooo good. We actually baked some of the frozen ones for lunch yesterday and they were still really good. Great quick meal solution. I'm totally keeping my freezer stocked with them from now on! Say hi to Lynnae :)


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