Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Three Words...

FREEZER MEALS BABY!!! When I was first introduced to this idea 4 or 5 years ago, the thought of eating casseroles out of the freezer was totally unappealing. First of all, I'm not really a casserole girl and secondly, I always do Weight Watchers after I have a baby (and in the last 5 years it seems like all I've done is have babies, but that my friends is another story!) and I didn't think that freezer meals would be conducive to WW. Thirdly, the whole concept seemed too time consuming and possibly not worth the effort.

Oh, but how I was wrong on all accounts. Now that I have done some freezer cooking, I'm not sure I could ever go back. I'm addicted. And how it has changed my afternoons!

For those of you that have never done it before, I have a few pieces of advice. There are a couple of ways to freezer cook; you can cook with a friend (or friends) or you can cook by yourself. There are pros and cons to both.
  1. Cooking with a friend. PROS: It's a fun way to spend the morning/day/afternoon. Time goes by faster. You are able to cook larger quantities, faster. Cheaper up front. Someone to divide and conquer with. CONS: You have to work around each other's schedules. If you both have kids at home, you have to figure out what to do with the kids. You also have to get together a lot to get a variety.
  2. Cooking on your own. PROS: You can cook at your own pace. You can make whatever you want. CONS: It's more expensive and not as fun.

I have done both. Cooking with a friend has been documented here and here. I have been cooking on my own and find it to be pretty easy. Here's what I have been doing: I buy a ton of chicken (since, aside from fish, that is really the only meat we eat) and then when I get home divide it into meals that require uncooked chicken breasts and meals that require cooked chicken. Over the next couple of days I make the chicken breast meals. And then over the next 2 weeks I make 2 meals from my freezer cookbooks and quadruple the recipe, then freeze it. Easy-peasy and lots of variety.

Two books that I have been using and LOVE! are Don't Panic Dinner's in the Freezer and Holly Klegg's Trim and Tasty Freezer meals. They both have ton of variety and I don't know that I have made a casserole yet! And Holly Klegg's book has all the nutritional facts, so that I can figure out the points.

Works for me!! For more Works for Me ideas check out Rocks in my Dryer.


The (Almost) Amazing Mammarino said...

Thanks! I have been avoiding freezer meals for exactly the same reasons. It's nice to know that there are some light options out there! I'll have to check out the Holly Klegg book.

Aubrey said...

I wish I could get my act together enough to do this.... I'm a first year family medicine resident (things to look forward to for you all) and it would be soo nice. Sigh. Anyway...I hope the match goes well tomorrow for your family. Our program is also excited to see who we are getting to come here. It's definitely more fun and less stress to be already through the match and just waiting on new interns. :) Have a good day!

Aubrey said...

So I just realized that since you are military, you probably already know where you are going. But congrats, anyway to both of you for finishing!! (I know my husband was a huge part of my med school success.)