Saturday, August 31, 2013

Crockpot Freezer Meals...

School is back in full swing, Ron is working full time again, and I hate to cook. Therefore, I am trying something new.  I've seen so many posts on Pinterest about crockpot meals, freezer meals, and clean cooking that it has become overwhelming.  I've tried recipes before and they weren't always very good.  So, I thought maybe I would take some recipes that we have used that we liked and try to make freezer meals out of them.  Warning: I have not tried freezing these ahead of time so I can't guarantee that these will work.  It is just something I wanted to try.  I'll post again as I try each one to keep a record of which ones worked out and which didn't.

Two of the recipes I used were from this cookbook.  Ron is a diabetic and is supposed to watch what he eats.  I got him this recipe book when he retired and took over the cooking.  It came with some little smiley face stickers to put on the recipes that you like.  Quite honestly, most of the ones we tried were mushy and pretty tasteless.  The soups and stews were usually good; but, we only eat those when it gets cold. The rest, we have added ingredients or deleted some things and found several we use repeatedly.

Here are variations of two I used today.

Beef Pot Roast
(I cut all of the ingredients and split them into two bags.  Then, I sliced the roast in half.  This made 2 meals for us because the recipe makes 8 servings.)

4 medium potatoes, cut into chunks
4 large carrots, cut into chunks
2 ribs of celery, cut into chunks
1 small onion, cut into wedges
(The following ingredients weren't included, but we like these in our pot roast.)
1/4 head cabbage, cut into wedges
1 med.  zucchini, cut into chunks
2 1/2 - 3 lb beef roast
(Before I put them into the bag, I wrote the cooking time and temperature on the outside, along with any ingredients that needed to be added before cooking.)
The night before, we will take the bag out of the freezer and put it in the refrigerator.  In the morning, Ron will put the ingredients into the crockpot, add 1 can of chicken or beef broth, and salt & pepper to taste.  It cooks on low for 10-12 hours.

This is what my bag looked like. I lay them on top of one another in the freezer.

Sweet and Sour Chicken
1 1/2 c. sliced carrots
1 lg. green pepper, chopped
1 med. onion, chopped
1 16 oz. can chunk pineapple in juice
(I added 1 can drained water chestnuts as well.)
3 T. brown sugar substitute
1 T. soy sauce
1/3 c. vinegar
1/4 t. fresh garlic
1/4 t. grated ginger
1/4 t. salt
2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into pieces.

Drain the juice from the pineapple, mix the juice, brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, and salt.  Toss the chicken, fruit, and vegetables and liquid to coat evenly.
(I divided this mixture into 2 freezer bags. I even wrote a note on the bag to let Ron know that we need to cook some rice for this recipe.)
Cook on low for 8-9 hours.  Serve over steamed rice.

I use the smaller crock pot for the two of us.

The next 2 recipes are just family favorites that I mixed together, put into 2 freezer bags, put them in the freezer, and will cook them in the crockpot as well.

Sausage Pot

1 Eckridge Polish Sausage, cut into chunks
1/2 head cabbage, cut into wedges
2 carrots, cut into chunks
2 celery ribs, cut into chunks
2 large potatoes, cut into wedges,
1 small onion, cut into wedges
2 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
(I divided all of these ingredients into 2 freezer bags.)
Place ingredients in crockpot; add 2 cups of water.  Cook in crock pot on low for 6-8 hours.  Drain water, and and garnish with parsley flakes before serving.

Pork Roast and Sour Crout

1 2 1/2 - 3 lb. lean pork roast, cut int half
1 med. onion, cut into wedges
2 cans Libby's Bavarian Sour Kraut
(I like this brand because it has caraway seeds. Use plain if you prefer.)

Put 1/2 of the port roast, 1/2 of the onion wedges, and 1 can of sour kraut into 1 freezer bag.  Do the same with the remaining ingredients.
Cook on low for 10 - 12 hours.

Like I said, I have never tried freezing these before.  I hope it works!!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

let us know how the cabbage freezes. would love to use these now that we are starting a service mission that will take us back to our unretired work schedule.