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Are you trying to learn to freezer cook?  This is the post for you!  Save money with it and learn the benefits.

If I haven’t sung the praises of extra freezer space enough over the past few weeks, let me throw one more reason at you, Freezer Cooking.

I was first introduced to the concept when my twins were babies, a store moved into the area that you could pay $15-$20 a meal to go in a prepare ready to cook meals.  For some reason we thought this was the best thing ever…  looking back I shudder at the cost compared to what I could make those same meals for now.  The concept, though, is still an awesome one.

What is freezer cooking?

Freezer cooking is a type of investment cooking, designed to fill your freezer with 2 weeks-2 months worth of home-cooked meals. Basically, you take one or two days a month and dedicate it to cooking meals.

At the end of the day, you can have 15 meal ideas with two of each meal – giving you 30 meals already made! Then you store the meal in a gallon size bag or stackable containers and freeze them until the day you plan to cook them.

On the day of, all you need to do is pull the meal out in the morning so that it can defrost and then reheat it before dinnertime for a hot, home-cooked meal!

The Benefits of Freezer Cooking

There are so many perks to changing your cooking style to freezer cooking. The one that I love most is that there is a significantly shorter preparation time when you come in to the kitchen after a busy day. All you need to do is pull it out of the freezer, throw the ingredients together, and reheat. This gives you more time to spend with your family and friends, or simply doing other stuff around the house that needs to get done.

Another perk that I love about freezer cooking is that you only have to prepare once! So if you need to chop onions, save yourself the trouble and chop 10 at a time. Preparing once means that you only have to clean up once! So you are reducing the amount of clean-up time every night if you go with this method of cooking.

Better yet, having food ready at home lowers the chances of going out-to-eat at the last minute…thus saving you money and helping you eat healthier.

Also, freezer cooking is fun because if there is ever an emergency or a family in need of a meal, you have several to choose from, cook quickly, and deliver to their door!

Freezer Cooking Tips

  • Think about making a large of “starter foods” like meats, sauces etc. and making multiple casseroles and entrees from the one starter.
  • You have to have a game plan for your day.  Be organized!
  • Create stations in your kitchen for meats, spices, and vegetables.  This will help keep dishes sanitary and safe from contamination.
  • Because we are all about saving money, you can’t shop for all these meals on the same day.  You need to continue to follow sale cycles and then plan your menus off what is in your pantry.
  • Split activities into two days if needed to avoid overload.  Prep vegetables, spices and sauces the night before, then put your meals together the next day.

Start Small

You may not be ready to mark off a whole day for cooking, so there are some things you can do now to make like in the kitchen so much easier.

  1. Buy already cooked rotisserie chickens (cold) from the deli.  They are cheaper cold.  Shred the meat and put into the freezer for pot pies, soups etc.
  2. Make sauces (marinara, pesto etc.) that you use regularly and freeze in large muffin tins.  Pop out the frozen sauces and store in bags, now you have spaghetti sauce in servings you can use without cooking it each week!  Do the same with left over soup for individual lunch servings.
  3. When you buy ground beef, rather than putting it all up raw, brown at least half and freeze already cooked.  You’ll cut prep time for a variety of meals in half!
  4. Invite a few friends over and have a meal making party.  You may not get a whole month done but you can each go home with 3-4 meals ready to freeze.

Do you have any tips to share??

Don’t forget this is part of a series on freezers.

Check back tomorrow to share some of your favorite freezer recipes and see my own Freezer Cooking Menu Plan.

    • Jgisler

      I wish it were easier for vegetarians to do this. All of the freezer recipes either contain meat or are pasta. I don’t want to eat pasta every night…

      • guest

        Rice and beans are both super easy to do in advance. I make big pots of both, freeze in meal size portions (think red beans and rice; fried rice; veg chili; 7 bean soup; etc) For a carb on the side bread is also a good choice and freezes well.

      • Sara

        we are not strictly vegetarians-but I love cooking vegetarian for health reasons and to save money! for freezing, I do southwestern bean soup, tempeh and tofu freeze well, so I often prep those with different mariandes and sauces! I like to use tempeh in oriental flavored dishes with rice and stir frys etc. eggplant freeszes well too!

      • Redd

        Try replacing the meat in the recipes with egg plant, portabell mushrooms, or beans. You may need to experiment a bit, egg plant and portabella mushrooms can make a dish soggy. I don’t know if tofu freezes well – sorry. But my vegetarian friend does this with a lot of ‘meat recipes’.

    • Mhbuchanan97

      Looking forward to tomorrow’s post!

    • MommaC

      When will the Annan freezer winner be chosen?

    • Pjpwillis

      I don’t have the freezer space or the space for a second freezer, so I compromise by making two of a meal at a time.  For example, if I’m making tater tot casserole for dinner then I make two and freeze one.  If we’re having tacos I make an additional pound of meat and freeze it.  When I cook chicken breasts, I make several pounds and freeze it so I always have what I need to throw in a crockpot meal or for the next casserole.  Even though I don’t have many meals in the freezer, there is always at least a couple to choose from at a moments notice. 

    • Mary

      I was in a freezer cooking club where I used to live.  Eight of us participated.  We would have a meeting and each lady would choose a meal to cook.   Then, at our own home, we would cook and freeze flat 16 of our meal (each meal had 4 servings).  We’d meet to swap, and each lady would leave with two packages of eight different meals.  To make money fair, we would calculate what we spent and write a check or receive a check from one lady acting as “bank.”  (If I spent $40 to make 16 meals, and the average cost for each lady was $50, I would write a check to the “bank lady” for $10 to make it even.)   It was a great way to get the variety without so much individual prep work!  And who doesn’t love a chance to get together with the gals?

    • Mary

      I was in a freezer cooking club where I used to live.  Eight of us participated.  We would have a meeting and each lady would choose a meal to cook.   Then, at our own home, we would cook and freeze flat 16 of our meal (each meal had 4 servings).  We’d meet to swap, and each lady would leave with two packages of eight different meals.  To make money fair, we would calculate what we spent and write a check or receive a check from one lady acting as “bank.”  (If I spent $40 to make 16 meals, and the average cost for each lady was $50, I would write a check to the “bank lady” for $10 to make it even.)   It was a great way to get the variety without so much individual prep work!  And who doesn’t love a chance to get together with the gals?

    • PTL

      I’ve borrowed books from the library on freezing foods/meals but I found that they just didn’t always work – like cooked hamburger meat just didn’t seem to taste as good after it was frozen. I made spahetti meat sauce, and chili, and we weren’t happy with it. Maybe leaving the meat out, freezing just the sauce/base, and then cooking and adding the meat just prior to eating the meal. Meals like turkey tetrazzini work well, though.

    • Mary

      Can’t agree with feeding my family frozen meals every night. Maybe ok once a while but not on a regular bases. Still love you Jenney!

      • CortBrown

        It’s not like its a hungry man– these are home cooked meals, just made on a different day. There are several extremely healthy dishes that can be frozen.

      • Lea

        Get off it Mary – they’re HOMEMADE MEALS.

      • guest

        I think it depends on how you do it. Lots of the freezer cooking books it winds up feeling like “leftovers again.” I prep in advance (precook some meats; cut the rest into quick to cook versions; precook pasta and rice; prechop veg; etc) that way I can “throw it together” last minute

      • Sam

        If everything is freshly prepared and homemade, it’s just as good or better  as anything you would prepare “short order cook style” without all the hassle.  

        I would feed my family frozen homemade meals over take out, salty convenience foods, and so forth.    You can add a salad easily to round it out.

    • Heather

      I have recently been able to start back “stocking up” and I have started back freezer cooking as well. Do you know what the keep time is on these things or will this come up in the series?

    • w120jmk

      I can’t wait for tomorrow’s post!

    • Anonymous

      my best friend’s mother makes $73 an hour on the Laptop. She has been fired for 5 months but last month her check was $8294 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read about it and get started following “Online income solutions” on this website http://gentleurl.net/zKw

    • MK

      Love this series! I do this already with a few things but I’m always wondering what kinds of things will freeze well? I do Chili, baked potato soup, pulled pork bbq, and meat loaf most often to freeze. I was wondering about chicken though? Can you bake chicken breasts and freeze them? Do they taste the same when reheated? What about cooked pork chops or cooked hamburgers? Would love to know how these things do in the freezer. Thanks

      • CortBrown

        I don’t know about the full breast, but chicken does just fine in casseroles! I have a casserole that layers stuffing, chicken, cream of chicken soup (repeat to top of dish). It freezes beautifully! I usually make three every time I cook it and freeze two!

      • Mary C

        When I was in a freezer cooking club, someone always did a marinated chicken breast.  They would trim the breasts, put them in a marinade, and freeze.  They were great!  I freeze chicken all the time.  I’ll buy large packages of chicken breasts when on sale and prep them before freezing.   I’ll trim them all, then some I’ll cook in crock pot and shred and use later for chicken bbq.  Some I’ll bake and then chop into pieces for casseroles.  Some I just trim and then freeze so I don’t have to trim them later.  If I buy ground turkey or beef, I usually cook it when I get home then freeze it in packages.  I’ve never found a difference in the taste.  HTH!

      • Cindy

        Chicken breasts freeze great. (Tyson does it and sells it for a fortune!) I like to grill a whole bunch when the weather is nice and freeze for later. Keeps the smoky flavor and everything :)

      • Bgraff01

        My mother-in-law used to grill a big batch of chicken and then freeze it. When we ate it I couldn’t tell the difference. Sorry I can’t give you much details but I know it can be done.

    • Melissa M.

      I don’t have a lot of freezer space either, but when I make things like mac and cheese or lasagna I always make two. They both freeze very well and taste fresh when baked in the oven. I may not always pre-cook meat, but if I buy a family pack of boneless skinless chicken breast I bring it home and prep it all. I clean all of it, trim it of the fat and butterfly some, cut some in strips, and some in chunks. I then freeze them in portion sizes for my family so when I’m cooking at night I can grab a bag of chicken out of the freezer that can be thrown directly into a pot of soup or jamblaya, etc.

    • HeatherE

      I really like this concept, I’m just having a hard time getting started. We don’t have a big freezer and its usually always full of other things like veggies and other frozen food items. I think I just need to break down and get a second freezer

    • PamAlabam

      I used to think that I needed to concentrate on main dishes that were time consuming or had multiple steps and leave the easier stuff to cook from scratch the day I needed them.  But..this ain’t so!  Do ahead anything your family likes.

      Also, I sometimes simply prepare the meat ahead of time.  I have a recipe for pork carnitas (Mexican meat) that calls for bonless pork loin, cubed.  Cubing 3 lbs of meat takes time, so I do just that and freeze it in packages. The recipe calls for just tossing the meat, an onion, and spices in the crockpot–about 3 minutes of work–so I usually do that the day I need it. I also pre-form hamburgers and freeze them.

      It space is a problem, think about cooking ingredients and packaging individually.  When I cook brown rice, I usually cook the whole package and freeze it in 2 cup portions.  If a recipe calls for chicken, rice, and cheese plus a couple of canned ingredients, just have the chicken and rice cooked and frozen, and maybe inlcude a baggie of the needed cheese.  Add the canned goods the day you need them and bake.  Maybe a tad more work than doing the whole thing at once, but much easier than starting from scratch every single day-plus it allows you to get more meal help in a small space.

      Sandwich bags work fine for things you know you will use up in a few weeks.  You don’t have to use more expensive freezer bags for everything.

      • Jacketfan24

        Would love the recipe for the pork carnitas!  It sounds good. 

        • PamAlabam

          PORK CARNITAS:  Trim fat from 3 lbs of bonless pork loin.  Cut into 2″ cubes. Sprinkle with: 2 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. chili powder, 1/2 tsp. each of cumin and oregano. Put in crockpot with an onion that has been quartered. (Recipe also calls for 3 cloves garlic but I add 1-1/2 tsp garlic powder near end of cooking time instead.) Cook on low for 6 hours or until meat is tender and falling apart. Stir and use as meat for tacos, burritos, etc.

          This stuff is wonderful.

      • Bgraff01

        You freeze cooked brown rice? That sounds like a great idea. Does rice freeze well if it doesn’t have a sauce or anything with it? Do you just stick it in a ziplock bag?

    • Sherry Thomas

      When I was single, I used to cook up chili, vegetable soup and made pre-formed hamburger pattys so that when I wanted something and didn’t feel like cooking, I could grab that out of the freezer and heat it up.  Not only did it help when I was tired but it saved me from eating chili or veggie soup for a week. (I never figured out how to cook for just one person!)   I even made mini meatloafs in muffin tins, cooked them and froze them and could defrost them as I wanted them. They store great after cooling off in a Ziploc freezer bag! 

    • Monica

      “MK” posted earlier and asked about chicken.  I cook chicken breasts quite frequently in my crock pot.  When they are cooked, I de-bone the meat and freeze the portion I will need later for a casserole or chicken and rice.  I add the broth to the ziploc bag with the meat before I freeze it.  Works great!

    • Anonymous

      Jenny, what is the best way to wrap the food (I see alum. foil in picture above) to prevent it from freezer burn?  Also, will you do a section on wrapping, bagging, etc. -general freezer storage tips for the different types of foods you include with the series? Thanks!

      • I kind of talked about a lot of that last week.  Might now as in detail as you are wanting but it’s a start. 

        http://www.southernsavers.com/2011/11/freezer-storage-101-best-freezing-techniques/

        As for foods we freeze, I’ll freeze pretty much anything!  I get a little picky with my vegetables when they are thawed and  if they lose there firmness I won’t eat them as a side any more, but will put them in soups or stews.  The postt above also has some freezing tips for veggies and length of storage time downloads.

    • Mary Beth

      I have always had issue’s with trying to freeze cooked meat and a few other things. I used to feel like the freezer hated me! lol. For me, without my food saver I wouldn’t be freezing much. Vacuum sealing your food is key! It will taste and be more fresh and you will avoid freezer burn. It’s a money saving investment. I’ve thrown away God know’s how much money in frozen foods before getting the food saver.

    • anon

      Refried beans are a very cheap one to make, but take a long time. We make these once a month and freeze in portions- we eat them 2-3 times a week. With a bag costing 99c, and a can costing $1 on sale, it saves us quite a bit!

      We wrap in wax paper then tinfoil and freeze, or bags and freeze.

      With chicken, we will marinate it in the freezer bag- put in marinade, freeze, and let it thaw all day in the fridge for when we get home!

      • Tangela

        would love to know your refried bean recipe.  I’ve tried, but I don’t do something right.  Thanks!

    • #1 Mimmi

      I aways try to use the vacuum sealer. If it is liquid, freeze it first then vacuum seal while frozen. This will prevent freezer burn!

    • Busymominfo

      I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and days like today when I feel horrible and can not cook, this would be great.  I know I can have a few good days a month I feel good to do this.  I am going to give this a try.  Thanks for all the great info.

      • Dearela

        My mother has RA so I know how few days a month you can have where you feel well enough to do anything! I hope you can benefit from freezer cooking and have many well days ahead!

    • croppinmama

      Have been doing this for years since a fellow homeschooling mom shared this concept with me.  My favorite cookbook series for this method is “Don’t Panic–it’s in the Freezer”, available everywhere and on amazon.  Super easy meal is to put a flank steak or London broil in a large ziploc bag with your favorite marinade, homemade or bottled, freeze and on cooking day, as it thaws, it marinates itself.

    • Elizabeth

      Do you have any websites you would recommend for a grouping of recipes?

    • Phairplu

      What freezer and/or frezzer size do you recommend for a family of 7?

    • shan

      We need a spin-off of this topic with everyone’s freezer recipes. I love this idea!

      • That’s tomorrow, so check back!

        • Reneeonc

          Thank you many times over!  Your site has saved my family SO MUCH moola over the past year!  I appreciate ALL you do

    • SabySmooth1

      I’ve been doing freezer meals for about 5 years now, and I love it! I don’t do an entire month, only about 10 days at a time. Then, during the week when I have a meal that serves more than our family, I’ll freeze half for later. Just keep in mind what things freeze well, and what things don’t. Loved this post!

    • guest

      I’m glad to see so many newcomers to this idea. Generations have been doing this – in the old days we “put up” the harvest, butchered the animals and froze all we could.
      You have a ready supply of foods you like, spend less money and can relax on busy days knowing your family can have a home cooked meal.
      if you are unsure about what and how to freeze there are hundreds of websites dedicated to “once a month cooking”. Also contact your loal extension agent – this concept is so old my agent has books from the 1950’s on the topic – and the information is still appliable today. Enjoy

    • There was a great article in Real Simple magazine several months ago that suggested doing something similar with friends…you each make meal, but large enough for 4 other families, and met to exchange.  The article included a lot of great recipes that freeze well.  I’m sure you could find it on their website.

    • Jenni P.

      I have a baby on the way (3 kids 6 and under), so I’m looking forward to the recipes to come! I have no experience in planning something like this. Thanks for sharing your knowledge on this!

    • Anonymous

      What about labels? I’ve been freezing a lot of veggies lately, and I’ve been using avery address labels, but they do not stick well. Any advice?

      • Guest 3

        I use freezer tape to label with and has worked fine for me so far.

      • Tealscoupons

        I use a sharpie on the outside of the bag- no label seems to work so I write on the bag!

      • Angel D

        I go to the local Dollar Tree and get the Blue Painters Tape.  Write on those with a pen or sharpie.  It sticks to bags and freezer containers, but doesn’t leave the icky residue on the containers when you rip it off.  It’s cheap and works the BEST!!!!!!!

        • Anonymous

          Sounds great, thanks!

    • Amy L.

      A few months ago I came across a super easy way to brown beef in bulk and it has been a HUGE time saver. To save from having to constantly stop drain the beef, place a plastic grocery bag over a large bowl then put a colander over top. Once you have browned a portion of the beef, let it cool for a minute then dump the beef  in the colander. When you are done browning the meat, all the grease is in the bag and you can just throw away. Super easy clean up!

    • Trina

      Anyone have suggestions on plastic containers to store in the freezer?  Any great deals coming up for Black Friday?

      • Nortricia

        I bought the Rubbermaid stackable containers two years ago on black friday and they are still like new.  I use them to store cooked chicken and ground beef.  They are the ones with the red lids that snap to the bottoms of the bowls when you are not using them.  I seen them in one of the ads but I don’t remember which one.

        • Karrierock

          They are at Wal-mart for less than $7 Black Friday.

      • Cb Lady9

        Krogers had the set for $9.99 this week

    • Mpfaith4him

      Can you freeze mashed potatoes?

      • Mlavender82

        You sure can!

      • Michi92186

        You can freeze mashed potatoes, but it changes the texture significantly. The mashed potatoes just aren’t as creamy after they are frozen and defrosted.

    • Balletdancer_gurl_2005

      It would be nice to see a post about some recipes or what meals that would be great to do this on. I love the idea just don’t know what to do it with. And I would be afraid I’d do something wrong or try to freeze the wrong thing.

    • Mpfaith4him

      Can someone give me some ideas on what kind of meals are good to freeze?

      • Amy L.

        Obviously soups are great-I make taco soup, veggie soup, lasagna, chicken and dumplings, chicken casserole–just about any casserole for that matter, baked ziti, meat balls, hash brown casserole, chilli, I have a breakfast quiche recipe that makes two pies so I make one for supper and freeze the other one for later..I have several other meals I freeze but those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head.
         Hope that helps!! I would be happy to share recipes with you or anyone else.

        • Sdhirtz

          I would love your recipes. Yummy! Sdhirtz@cox.net

          • Amy L.

            just sent them to y’all!

        • Sheralyn

          I would also love any recipes you are willing to share! :)
          Thanks in advance…. sdannbro@nc.rr.com

        • rbbrdckeee

          I would love any receipes someone is willing to share – beckycates@ymail.com

    • Guest 3

      my favorite meals to freeze are soups and chilis.  i make texas chili, white chicken chili, taco soup and zuppa tuscana soup (just like the olive garden’s!).  I make those in large batches so my family can feed on them twice in the week and the leftovers go into the deep freeze for a night a couple of weeks later when i don’t feel like or am too busy to cook.
      I look forward to seeing what recipes come up tomorrow to give me more prepared meals to freeze :-)

      • Guest 3

        oh, i left out a favorite: chicken tortilla soup!

        • Bdbates02

          Can you share your soup recipes?

        • Ottaway Angel

          can i get that recipe i love that soup

    • Guest 3

      my favorite meals to freeze are soups and chilis.  i make texas chili, white chicken chili, taco soup and zuppa tuscana soup (just like the olive garden’s!).  I make those in large batches so my family can feed on them twice in the week and the leftovers go into the deep freeze for a night a couple of weeks later when i don’t feel like or am too busy to cook.
      I look forward to seeing what recipes come up tomorrow to give me more prepared meals to freeze :-)

    • CT

      Check the library for books on freezer meals. There are quite a few out there and your local library probably has at least a couple.

    • CT

      Oh! You know what I really love to freeze? Cookie dough! Nothing like cookies straight from the oven. I just use my cookie scooper to scoop out 12 balls of dough, line them up, wrap them up and freeze. Works for Toll House, right?

    • Anonymous

      Read a book just on this topic… Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half By: Annette & Steve Economides.  Was a little overwhelming but very good book.  They cook for an entire month for just one day, have pictures of their freezer space, lists of what you can and can not freeze, recipes, etc.  

    • guest

      I finally got a second freezer 2 years ago but I have been freezer cooking for over 20 years. My favorite space saving “trick” is to freeze everything in “bricks” by using a “mold” (otherwise know as the bottom half of a cereal, pasta or other food box, just put the bag in the box, fill, freeze, When you remove from the box you will have a nice regular shape to stack thus eliminating dead space. the molds can be used multiple times and when one inevitably breaks down it is not at all a “big deal”)

      • Daylog

        the brick trick is amazingggggggggggggggggggg!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Reneeonc

        wow!  what a great idea!  This is a completely new concept to me and I was just reading jennie’s article, trying to figure out how everything could “stack” neatly!  Thanks for the tip!

      • Bonniewabnitz

        or a loaf pan! that’s a great idea

    • Bjdonalds

      Kind of on the subject of freezer cooking…….
      Our family drinks a lot of milk. So to keep from  running out of milk and then running out to the store at midnight,  I experimented andthis is what I discovered:
      1.  Take a HALF GALLON of milk out of the freezer at bedtime, place in the sink and voila!  Ice cold (thawed) milk the next morning. Shake well before opening.    
      2.  ONE GALLON will partially thaw by morning.  Shake well and you will have ice milk slush.

    • Anonymous

      I don’t hav emuch freezer space (just what’s over my apartment sized fridge) but I do swear by freezing when I can.  My best tip is to measure then freeze anything that will be an ingredient.  I do this when I have home made chicken broth.  I freeze it in 1/2 cup portions in a muffin tin.  Unless it is soup, recipes always call for a specific amount, this way I know what I have.

      • Danielle

        I don’t know if I quite understand the “muffin tin” concept. Can you please explain it a little more in detail. I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you!

        • Anonymous

          I use a regular sized muffin tin like an ice cube tray.  I freeze things like stock or broth in them in measured amounts (usually 1/2 cup).   Once they are frozen I pop them out and place them in freezer bags to store.  HTH

          • Guest

            do they pop out easily from a metal tin? or do you have to soak them in warm water first?

          • Danielle

            Thanks for answering! Just one more thing…when you put the muffin tin in the freezer do you cover it or freeze it uncovered? Thanks!!!!!! :)

          • Anonymous

            I don’t leave them in for days, just long enough to freeze so I never bother covering them.

            I have tried using my beloved silicone muffin tray but unless you have a perfectly flat area in your feezer it doesn’t work well.  If you use cheap muffin tins they will flex almost like an ice cube tray.  lol  When I use my better tin that won’t flex I just let it sit on the counter for a minute or two, and they usually slide right out.  I guess if you had the foil muffin wrappers you could line them with those and they would slip right out.  I’ve never tried the liners I just now thought of it.

        • Krazeymae

          Danielle, I think the muffin tin thing is just a nice way to freeze something be/c that way you pop them out frozen and store them in a bag or something and they are all the same size/same amount: like tomato sauce all in 1/2 c servings or chicken broth all in 1/2 c servings or whatever, so you’ll know if a recipe calls for 1.5 c then you use three of your frozen muffin cups. Does that help or make it worse?? :)

          • Danielle

            Thanks for answering! Just one more thing…when you put the muffin tin in the freezer do you cover it or freeze it uncovered? Thanks!!!!!! :)

    • Foxam

      For other single people out there I do this on a much smaller scale.  I cook regular sized batches and freeze in portions small enough for one, instead of for an entire family.

    • Ac4mail

      I have used “Once-a-Month Cooking” by Mimi Wilson as a reference book, and learned lots of new recipes from them.  I learned to make a list of my recipes, and then columns of similar ingredients, like chopped onions.  Then enter how many cups needed for each recipe, and total them up for the whole amount needing to be chopped at once.
      I use old fashioned freezer cartons for much of my freezing, and masking tape to label them. Flat gallon zip-log bags take up little space as well.
      Creamy soups do NOT freeze well, as they separate after freezing.
      I’m looking forward to learning some more recipes from you guys. :)
      Amy C

    • Onedaculamom

      I never seem to find the time to do a one day cooking marathon.  I typically double my meals so that I can freeze one and eat the other.  I will make a chicken dish and freeze either the cooked chicken or make it into a dish.  If you double your dinner 3 times a week you will cut your meal prep in half.  You will have 6 meals for the week and can eat out or have leftovers on the 7th day.  

      Also, I always buy my hamburger meat in bulk.  I boil it and freeeze it in ziploc bag, 1 pound flattened out portions.  This way I cook hamburger meat once a month.  It is so easy to thaw and use.

      • Jjlsaver

        Boiled hamburger meat?

    • Jjlsaver

      We need a separate section for recipe sharing! I would love some good freezer recipes! :)

      • There will be a link up in today’s post for everyone to share recipes!

    • One of my best tips is freeze in quart bags because the smaller size thaws quicker and use a plastic shoe box in your fridge to defrost, it catches the condensation. I post daily tips/tricks and teach freezer cooking at my blog. Start doubling and freezing your family favorites and then branch out.

    • JaxCinderella

      I usually buy chicken or turkey on the bone or as my own roaster chickens…I make one meal that night, freeze the left over meat and then begin a stock pot to make homemade stock!  I go back and freeze the stock the next day or so and viola…I have ice cubes of stock to help with soups, etc.  It’s so much cheaper than buying the store bought type.  

      I also have a food processor and make my own baby food.  It makes so much more sense to buy sweet potatoes, bake them, and freeze puree in ice trays, then pop out into ziploc bag.  

      There is a book…Cut your Grocery Bill in Half…she gives lots of tips about once a month cooking and freezing techniques.  As well as how to save on produce and meat products — which even you know Jenny, there aren’t coupons for a lot of times.   Great to buy and keep on hand for all the tips.   (there is also a site to look up serial numbers of freezers to see how old they actually are before buying a used freezer!!!) 

    • Pdeals3

      I appreciate the tips on freezer cooking. I’m single but bought a freezer earlier this summer to be able to stock up on great deals and save money.  It’s great having a freezer full of stuff but not when I have to unthaw everything. I end up still just eating whatever is the quickest and easiest. I did buy the foodsaver earlier this week  though so I’m looking forward to using it to package meat individually when I first buy it so that I can whip up a quick meal. BTW, Jenny (and everyone who contributes), you guys rock. Thanks so much for all you do.  

    • Chadsjoy

      Freezer cooking is my passion!  One of the ways I do it easily is being part of a freezer co-op where we exchange meals once a month.   Find more tips on FB under “Fearless of the Freezer”.

    • Alicia

      A huge hit in our house is Individual fajitas!
      In the morning before work, I throw some chicken breast, peppers, onions, and fajita seasoning into the crock pot. When I get home I spoon all the mixture on tortillas, add cheese, roll them up and lay them on a cookie sheet (fold side down) in the freezer overnight. Then they are individually frozen so you can store them in a bag or dish and take out however many you want and microwave or bake them! Easy to make and remake!! :)

    • Kvhoover

      I always cook my chicken off the bone and freeze it in bags that way i can use them in casseroles and chicken pop pies! I use to use canned chicken to save time but when u need 2 cans and its 3 dollars a can it hurt my feelings!!!!

    • Neena

      Espresso is my favorite color for furniture!

    • Mbennett3

      love to cook & freeze, but not enough freezer space. would love not to waste…

    • Badnadadsmom

      I want to start cooking and freezing but I need a freezer to help. I  have two active boys and this would really help on the nights that we have practice.