On a busy night, there is nothing more convenient than having a freezer filled with freezer meals. There are several books with tips and tricks on how to stock up your freezer with freezer meals, but my approach may be a little simpler.
In our weekly menu planner there will be recipes each week that have a small snowflake by them that specify that that particular recipe works well as a ‘freezer meal’. When you see these recipes, and if it is a meal you were going to make for your family that week, DOUBLE the ingredients and make two (or three) batches of that recipe and freeze the extras for later. It doesn’t take more than a few minutes extra to double or triple most recipes, but it can save LOTS of time on a busy night to have a meal all ready to go for your family.
Some of my favorite EASY freezer meals are lasagna, enchiladas (shredded beef enchiladas are my families favorite), nearly ALL soups freeze well, taco meat, homemade spaghetti sauce (makes chicken parmesan, manicotti, lasagna easy once the sauce is done) and meat loaf. Whenever I make these meals I double the recipe and freeze the rest for later. To make your freezer meals easy on a busy night, label them clearly so you know what is in each tupperware or pan, write the baking instructions on the top of the Tupperware or dish on a piece of tape or on the plastic or foil covering, and try to put them all in a specific spot in your freezer. Knowing exactly where you keep your freezer meals will make for easy access to grab and cook for a quick dinner (my deep freeze can get scary if I don’t have it organized well!).
When defrosting the freezer meal, you can thaw it out first for several hours in the fridge, or you can take off the covering and microwave the meal to soften it up if your meal is in a container that is microwavable. You can then bake or warm up the meal as you would a normal meal–just increase the baking time as needed for each recipe.
If you freeze one or two freezer meals a week (or month, depending how busy you are), you will find your freezer will be full of ready-to-go quick, homemade, and easy meals for your family!