Friday, May 8, 2015

{Frozen Meals For Days}

If you follow me on Instagram, you probably saw that I did a HUGE evening of prepping frozen meals so we could be ready for our little man to arrive! 

I'll be honest, I was skeptical and overwhelmed by the whole ordeal. But, it was on my to-do list and I REALLY wanted to mark it off. SO...I figured I'll take a stab at it. What can go wrong?

I had originally e-mailed Wendel's parents and my mom to come and help, but the night before I was so not prepared {like hadn't been to the grocery yet} that I just told them we'll be fine and do it on our own.

Wendel was busy doing projects around the house and mowing the yard, so I was flying solo on this. If I had help it would go much faster! My mother-in-law will kill me when she reads this because she totally would have come and helped, but I hated to take her away from her evening. Sorry Fayzie. 

But I did this alone, 9 months pregnant, in 4 hours.

You can do this! 

My body HATED me afterwards, and I think I have a freakish stamina, but I did it!  

I got the idea from this blog post I found on Pinterest. I have NO earthly idea how she did this for $100. Mine came in right under $200 and I used a LOT of coupons and went on a week that I knew meat was on sale. But hey...we were still excited about getting under $200. 

And you know what, now that I look at her list, I did like double the that would make sense that it was double the cost. 


In her post, she offers her cookbook for's a download! 

Super duper easy to download and print off! 

So it...print if off! Now! 

Then I just picked a few that looked good to me, and let Wendel be the final decider. 

Here's what we ended up making and the amount the we got out of the recipe:

-Easy French Dip Sandwiches: 1 gallon sized zip-lock bag
-Pork Street Tacos: 1 gallon sized zip-lock bag
-Summer Chicken Chili: 3 gallon sized zip-lock bags
-Pasta e' Fagioli Soup: 3 gallon sized zip-lock bags
-Old Fashioned Meatloaf: 2 loaf pans
-Spaghetti & Italian Meatballs {just the meatballs though}: Around 45 meatballs
-Easy Beef and Cheese Enchiladas: 2 9x13 pans
-Black Bean Enchiladas: 3 9x13 pans
-Stuffed Shells {not in the cookbook...recipe's one of our favorites}: 2 9x13 pans
- English Muffin Breakfast Sandwiches {not in the cookbook}: 8 sandwiches 

After school I went and got all of my was my shopping list: 

{I think that me organizing my shopping list was key! Wendel did have to run and get me more pans, but I upped the numbers on this list so you should be good to go if you follow this list!}

Shopping List For Our Freezer Meal Extravaganza

Onions: 7
Carrots: 1 bag {this was for the meatballs...I didn't use them...
Garlic: new jar
Spinach: 1 bag
Zucchini: 6 small
Meat/Canned Goods:
Lean Ground Beef: 3 lbs
Ground Turkey: 3 lbs
Beef Roast: 3-4 lbs
Pork Chop/Roast: 3-5 lbs
Chicken: 1 lb
Italian Sausage: 1 lb
Refried Beans: 4 cans
Black beans: 2 can
White beans: 2 {15 oz} cans
Pinto beans: 1 can
Kidney beans: 1 can
Corn: 1 can
Steak Seasoning
Bullion Cubes
Au Ju Sauce Packets {to use later when you eat the French Dip subs}
Salsa- 3 jars
Green Chili Enchilada Sauce- 3 jars
Red Enchilada Sauce- 2 jars
Green Chilies- 3 cans
Diced tomatoes: 3 {15 oz} cans
Chicken broth: 4 cups + 14 oz
Tomato sauce- 3 jars
Italian Bread Crumbs- 1 jar
Cream Cheese:  1 block
Shredded Cheese: 3 bags
Eggs: dozen
Parmesan cheese: 2 cups
Mozzarella: 2 cups
Cottage Cheese: 16 oz
Riccota: 15 oz
Tortillas- 4 bags
Pasta for soup: small tiny tube pasta
Ziplock baggies- gallon size and sandwich size {for sauces}
9x13 pans-8 or so
Loaf pans: 2

Like I said, that came out to about $200

I did get an extra jar of a few things just because I knew we would use them eventually and can't remember if I actually used them. So I got an extra pasta sauce and jar of salsa. Just an FYI. 

Then I came home, organized everything on our counters...and the feeling of "oh goodness...what have I gotten myself into" set in!

But I put my big girl pants on...and got to work!

This is the order in which I did everything:

1. Put meat for french dip sandwiches and pork tacos in the crock pots {stole a crock pot from my mom} to get that started. I put it on high and it was cooked in about 4 hours 

2. Get the two soups started, which involved lots of cutting and browning and stirring. This probably took about an hour on it's own. 

3. Made the meatloaf and meatballs and put the meatballs in the freezer so they would start getting cold so I could package them into serving sizes. 

4. Made the beef and cheese enchiladas which consisted of browning some meat and then assembling the enchiladas in 9x13 pans. I poured the enchilada sauce in sandwich zip-lock bags and laid them on top of the enchiladas before putting the top on the pan. Before I bake them, I'll top the enchiladas with the sauce. 

5. Made the black bean enchiladas which just consisted of putting everything in a bowl, heating it up, and then assembling the enchiladas in 9x13 pans. I poured the enchilada sauce in sandwich zip-lock bags and laid them on top of the enchiladas before putting the top on the pan. Before I bake them, I'll top the enchiladas with the sauce. 

6. Boiled the water for the shells and made the cheese mixture while they were cooking. Then stuffed the shells laying them into 9x13 pans {with pasta sauce on the bottom} and topped them with the cheesy sauce from the recipe. Then put the lids on them and they were good to go! 

7. I used an egg cooker to cook my eight eggs {it does four at a time} and assembled my sandwiches which consisted of a toasted English muffin, slice of American cheese, two pieces of Canadian bacon, and the cooked egg. Then I wrapped them in wax paper and wrapped that in foil to keep the freezer burn away. 

8. Got the meatballs out of the freezer and put 9 of them into sandwich sized zip-lock bags so we can just defrost a small bag for a meal for Wendel and I. 

9. Shred the meat in the crock pot and put them into gallon sized zip-lock bags. 

10. Then I made labels for everything reminding me what temperature to bake them/for how long and used packing tape to secure them down on the lids. 

11. Took a nice long bubble bath followed by a long massage from Wendel 

And that's about it! 

I'm eager to try some more recipes, and taste these once we're finished with people bringing meals to us! We also plan on doing lots of easy grilling this summer, which will be awesome! 

So there you go!

Big time happy face, and big time swollen feet were involved in the end!

I hope that was helpful! 

Have a fabulous weekend! 

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