Budget Boot Camp Week 8: Freezing Meals

by Allison @ Alli 'n Son on August 24, 2010

I’m Budget Boot Camp Challenger!
I was a little relieved when I found out what this week’s Budget Boot Camp Challenge was. Compared to the last few weeks, which involved a fair amount of time researching and planning {but which has actually panned out, I’m still looking through sale ads each week and matching up coupons}, this week’s challenge, making an extra meal and freezing it, is something that I’ve already been doing.

Some weeks, if the kiddo and I don’t have any pressing plans, we’ll just stay at home and enjoy a lazy day. Which sometimes translates into me in a baking frenzy while the kiddo runs around the house like a crazy person. But I truly enjoy baking, crave it even, so all in all, it’s a good time.

Lately, when I’m preparing for baking, whether it’s crackers, pizza, pizza sauce or muffins, I’ll bake in large batches. Sometimes I’ll just make extra dough and toss it in the freezer for a rainy day. Or I’ll make an extra dozen or two of muffins and put those in the freezer. They make for a quick breakfast on the run. Just pop them in the microwave for 15 seconds and you are ready to go. Or if you plan ahead, take them out the night before.

With meals that make a large batch to begin with, like Chili or pasta sauce, I simply package any leftovers into 2-3 servings and freeze them. It makes for a quick meal on a busy night, when you just don’t want another frozen pizza.

The big question is, does making an extra meal take more time? That really depends. For muffins, yes, because it involves extra baking time. For pizza dough and crackers, not really. You are just mixing up extra dough and freezing it, for baking another day.

For other meals, it varies, depending on the complexity of the meal. But, if you are addicted to multi-tasking like I am, you can prepare the extra meal while you are making that evenings meal. You won’t even notice the extra time it takes. Or if you are really ambitious, dedicate one entire day a week to cooking meals for the week.

Freezing works for me for a few reasons. Some days, I just don’t want to cook. We arrived home later than planned, and there’s no time to get the nights meal ready. Or maybe we need to cut back on groceries one week, eating from the freezer is a great way to do this.

Clair has some wonderful tips on freezing just about anything on this week’s Budget Boot Camp Challenge post. From flash freezing to casseroles, fun ice cubes to freezing large quantities. Plus, she has a fun giveaway going on.

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Do you freeze extra meals? Why do you freeze? What is your favorite meal to freeze?

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This post is proudly linked up to Mondays: Mouthwatering Mondays, Made By You Monday, Mingle Monday Tuesdays: It's a Blog Party, Tip Junkie, Get Your Craft On, Lil' Luna Wednesdays: Works for Me Wednesday Thursdays: It's a Keeper Thursdays, Strut Your Stuff, Full Plate Thursdays, Chic & Crafty Party, Transformation Thursday, Sweet Treats Thursday Fridays: I'm Loving It, Foodie Friday, Simply Designing, Show and Tell Friday Saturdays: Sweets for a SaturdayPositively Splendid, Saturday Nite Special Sundays: Nifty Thrifty Sunday, Sundae Scoop Party, The Sunday Showcase Party

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 TheKitchenWitch August 24, 2010 at 9:50 am

I tend to do it a lot more in the fall and winter, when soups and stews are on the menu. It sure can be a lifesaver on those crazy days.

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2 Allison August 25, 2010 at 11:23 pm

Yea, I do it more in the fall and winter too. When I’m stuck inside with nothing to do.

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3 Deb August 24, 2010 at 1:31 pm

I am a Freezer Fanatic!

Every three months or so, I have a marathon of cooking, and then I pull dinner out of the freezer most night until I run out. In July, I stocked my freezer with over 80 meals. Meatloaf, Meatballs, Ham and Bean Soup, Beef Burgundy, Irish Beef and Stout Stew, Taco Meat, French Dip Meat….

We eat home-cooked food and I don’t have to cook every night. I wouldn’t know how to do it any other way. I have some recipes on my blog if you are interested in adding to your arsenal.

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4 Allison August 25, 2010 at 11:24 pm

WOW, 80 meals? I love the idea of doing monthly or more cooking. One of these days I will give it a try. Not having to make a homecooked meal every night sounds perfect.

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