Are you looking for more time during the week? Maybe spending more time with your family is high on your to-do list or you’d like to take up a new hobby but never seem to find the time. There is a solution to your time dilemma that you may never have considered before: freezer cooking.
When freezer cooking becomes part of your life, you find more time, more money, and a lot less chaos. You are able to do more of the things that need to be done and you still get dinner on the table. Sound too good to be true?
Are you curious about what freezer cooking is or how to get started? Let’s take a closer look through some questions you may have.
What is freezer cooking?
Freezer cooking is making up a number of meals ahead of time and freezing them until you are ready to serve them.
There are several different ways to freezer cook. First, you can go ahead and do all your meals in one day. Second, you can do a recipe whenever you find extra time. Or third, you can get together with your friends and divide up who will make what and share the meals. That’s one of the great things about freezer cooking — it is super flexible and can be done on your terms.
What are the benefits of freezer cooking?
One benefit is the time you save by freezer cooking. When you make all your meals ahead of time you are spending less time in the kitchen every night. You are no longer having to prepare each meal from start to finish; all you need to do is take your meal out of the freezer and pop it in the oven. Not to mention, clean-up is a breeze. You’ll have fewer dishes to wash, and the kitchen doesn’t get quite as messy as it would if you were having to cook the meal that night.
When you cook all the meals at once, you are able to save money because you can buy in bulk. For instance, if you know you are going to use a lot of cheese for a recipe, you are able to buy your cheese in bulk instead of buying it in a smaller package.
How do you get started freezer cooking?
Freezer cooking is easy to start. Once you’ve made the decision to give freezer cooking a try, simply look for recipes that you think your family would enjoy. After compiling a list of recipes and deciding how many meals you would want from each recipe, write down all the ingredients and go shopping. It’s as simple as that to get started. Then, you simply plan to prepare all your meals.
What if you get overwhelmed?
It is so easy to start out with every intention of prepping and freezing a month’s worth of meals and then getting totally overwhelmed. In fact, I think it’s one of the main reason more people don’t continue with their freezer meal plans. If this is something you want to avoid entirely, sign up for Erin Chase’s ($5 Dinner Mom) MyFreezeasy Freezer Cooking Workshop. Erin will walk you through how it all works and even give you a free sample meal plan.
The secret, she says, is having the right recipes, and she has a subscription service that will let you pick and choose your own recipes each month.
What supplies are needed to start freezer cooking?
You may already have the supplies you need for freezer cooking in your kitchen.
- Freezer zip-top bags
- Glass containers
- Aluminum containers
- Aluminum foil
If you’re wondering about vacuum sealers, read our article Vacuum sealers: are they worth the price?
Who benefits from freezer cooking?
Not only do you benefit from the time you are spending in the kitchen, but your family also benefits because they get more time with you. Plus, the meals you are eating are coming from your kitchen and not a drive-through. We have an article on how you can throw a freezer meal party and get to spend more time with your friends, as well. And they, too, can benefit from ready-to-go homemade meals.
How long does it take?
If you have a whole day to commit to freezer cooking, then a whole day. Or you can break it up into several different days. The choice is yours.
What are some freezer cooking resources I can use to learn more?
The best place to find recipes for freezer cooking is probably the MyFreezeasy Meal Plan Service. This one focuses on budget-friendly freezer meals and has probably been around the longest. You get to choose the recipes you want from the database and then put together a freezer meal plan you already know fits the needs of everyone in your home. It starts at $8 per month, which you’ll easily make back in time saved and meals not purchased at the drive-through.
Another place you can look is on Pinterest. You may be surprised by the number of recipes that actually exist just for freezer cooking. There are recipes for whole meals, crock pot meals, main dishes, and side dishes all geared toward freezer cooking.
There are also ebooks on the market to help you learn more about freezer cooking.
If the idea of spending a whole day cooking sounds a bit overwhelming, you can still have the benefits of freezer cooking by choosing one thing to make in bulk. For instance, if your family loves French toast sticks, you can make a whole bunch of those and freeze them. Then, the next time you decide to give freezer cooking a try, you can pick another recipe to make and go ahead and make several of that meal. Over time, you will see your freezer beginning to fill with different types of meals and eventually you’ll have enough to last several weeks.
Whether you want to jump feet first into the whole freezer cooking thing or you want to test the waters, there are benefits to both.
Freezer cooking saves you time, money, and sanity. Are you ready to start saving?
Editor’s Note on Freezer Cooking
I thought I was a master of freezer cooking until I met Erin Chase, who runs My FreezEasy. Erin takes freezer cooking and meal planning to a whole new level, and as the mother of four boys, she knows the challenges of pleasing a hungry family.
Erin has developed a system in which she can prepare 10 delicious meals and load them into the freezer in less than an hour. That’s TWO WEEKS’ worth of weeknight meals!!
And her system makes it all so easy. Every month, you get eight new freezer meal plans (you can tailor them to your taste), plus recipes, shopping lists and step-by-step instructions, including videos. Her system works whether you’re an experienced cook or you’re just starting out.
Don’t worry if your family is picky or has special dietary needs: You have a choice of a traditional plan, gluten-free, slow cooker, clean eats, 20 meals, all chicken, all ground beef or all pork chops – with gluten-free and dairy-free modifications for all recipes. Or, you can create your own customized plan using her recipe collection.
Here’s what one happy customer said about MyFreezEasy:
“So, I finally got round to giving this meal plan a try and I freaking loved it! I love that I have prepared meals sitting in the freezer that I can pull out (or – shock..horror, my hubby can!) and we will have good food cooking so easily. I really loved this concept and now I can let go of the “what’s for dinner” stumper every night!”
If you’ve been wanting to try freezer cooking but aren’t sure where to start, this is a great way to learn. MyFreezEasy is offering a FREE Cooking 101 online workshop in which they will talk about the benefits of freezer cooking in 3 short videos. They will also teach you how to prep, thaw and cook your meals as well as what freezes well and doesn’t freeze well. After watching the videos, My FreezEasy also has the opportunity to join the MyFreezEasy program which starts at just $8.25 per month when you sign up for a year. You will more than earn back the cost in the money you’ll save because you won’t waste food or turn to takeout. And that doesn’t even account for the time you’ll save once you’re not wracking your brain about what to make for dinner.
If you’re looking to save more money by freezer cooking and eating meals at home, you might also want to read these articles:
- $4 a day budget meal planning an grocery shopping
- Simplify back to school with freezer meal planning
- Eat at Home meal planning subscription
- The secret to serving a quick, cheap family dinner every night
More articles about food preservation:
- How to get started dehydrating food at home
- 5 cheap ways to preserve food
- Preserve food with cheap canning equipment and free recipes