I've been working hard to put together some frozen meals for us, just to make things a bit easi...
I've been working hard to put together some frozen meals for us, just to make things a bit easier in terms of cooking. Now that we have our deep freezer, we have more storage space and we have the luxury of finally going crazy. My big plan is to start a monthly freezer meal swap with our Mom's Group so I got enough for those meals, as well as for some additional meals for us.
These are the meals I made, which have a printed section with the instructions to make it as well as a section to attach to the freezer bag for instructions on how to cook it. The only one I didn't do was the Baked Penne (too complicated to do with all the other meals I had to make), and I'm going to put together the bags of Pork Chops tomorrow night.
I made 9 bags of the Teriyaki Chicken (6 swap meals, 1 for a coworker, 2 for us), 2 of the Italian Chicken, 2 Pesto Chicken with Green Beans, 1 Pesto Chicken with Asparagus, and 2 Beef and Mushrooms. I have enough Pork Chops for two freezer bag meals. That makes a total 11 meals that I made for us, and I'll receive 6 more meals as part of the swap. Total meals: 17 meals. Each meal serves at least 4 so that gives us dinner one night, plus some leftovers for lunch the next day. The beef and mushrooms looks like it will serve a small army (3 lbs of beef per meal!) so I imagine that will involve lots of leftovers.
It was pretty expensive to put together this many meals with meat. We saved money by splitting our trip between Costco and our local grocery store so we could get bulk items (ie. chicken, beef, frozen green beans) at Costco, then get items like the cream of mushroom soup at the grocery store. We also used some frozen meat that we'd bought in bulk from the butcher as a big package. I think it'd be a lot more of a savings if we'd made some vegetarian meals, but these are the meals I picked out (not thinking) and I wanted to get the meat in bulk so it was easier to just make all chicken/beef meals (we had pork already) in order to get those big 7 lb packs of meat from Costco to split up and use. I think it's probably ideal to wait to make certain meals until the store is having a sale on the meat you'd like to use... just a suggestion. For example, my local grocery store sometimes has giveaways on chicken where you buy one package and get one free.
I can't imagine how hard I'd cry if our freezer broke right now!