Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Prepackaged Freezer Bag Meals

Healthy eating, or even eating in general, is something that tends to quickly be forgotten when my schedule becomes busy. It is easy to pick up fast food and to rationalize it by saying that I don't have time to cook anything.

Over a couple years of extensive Pinterest-ing, I have found many great posted by incredibly organized people who have pre-made their families dinners months in advance.  In keeping with my "Be Prepared" moto for 2014, I decided to attempt to pre-make a lot of my meals for this semester. 

The basic idea is that the individual selects a set of their favorite slow cooker recipes, normally 7-10. They track the ingredients needed for all of the recipes and create a master shopping list. After collecting all required groceries, the items are chopped, sautéed etc. and divided into a series of freezer bags, one for each recipe. Each bag is laid flat and frozen. The night before the meal is to be eaten, the bag is thawed. In the morning, the contents of the freezer bag is placed into a slow cooker and, by dinner time, a meal is prepared. Genius, right?

For my attempt, I used a post by the Busy Budgeting Mama. She does a very good job of listing the ingredients needed and providing step by step instructions. 

Here are some pictures from my experience...

The required ingredients, minus any meat products. 

Freezer bags laid out with corresponding recipes. 

Filling up the bags. For particularly runny recipes, I found it was helpful to stand the freezer bags in a bowl.

Bags laid flat upon each other. Tip: If you freeze your bags like this, they will take up less room in your freezer.

I will post reviews as I try out each of these recipes!
- J

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