Friday, December 3, 2010

Freezer Food Review-Part 2!

Sorry this is so late! I had planned on writing this blog post over a week ago, but Thanksgiving came SO quickly this year!! At least for me...

So, here it is! The rest of the reviewed recipes. Now, there are still a few that are in the freezer as we had nights that we just ate PB&J or had dinner with friends, but so far, so good!

Mexican Chicken Casserole: This one is delicious as a freezer meal! As per previous statements, this is another one where it is crucial that you undercook your rice slightly so that it isn't super mushy once you re-heat it. Other than that, the flavor is great!

Cheeseburger Meatloaf: This is my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE of the freezer meals! It was completely delicious. And the kids loved it too! It's going on the "every freezer cooking day" menu for sure! Now, in my case, I cooked the mealoaf fully before freezing. You can freeze it raw, but only if the meat you are using has never been frozen (thawing meat, then re-freezing it encourages bacteria growth and can make you sick!). I put it in the fridge the evening before to thaw, and then cooked normally (40-45 minutes in the oven, then slathered on BBQ sauce and cooked for 10 more minutes). It was fabulous! We paired it with Idahoan homestyle mashed potatoes and frozen steamed broccoli!

Sloppy Joes: This was also very good re-heated! Somehow I think it multiplied in the freezer, as we had a lot leftover... I just dumped the frozen mixture into a skillet and heated it through. Took about 15 minutes! Super easy and yummy.

Pumpkin pancakes: In all honesty, these were a flop in my opinion. The idea was great, but the execution was a fail on my part! They were dry, and not very sweet at all. I think they would be really good, but I need to tweak the recipe first! Look for that in upcoming freezer days.

Stuffed shells: Another super easy meal. When I first made the shells, I only cooked the pasta about half way, stuffed them, froze on a sheet pan, and put into a zip bag once frozen. To re-cook, I put some pasta sauce in a pan, layed the shells in it, covered them with sauce, covered the pan with foil, and baked for 30 minutes (I baked it another 10 minutes uncovered after). Super easy!

Teriyaki chicken: This oen is really good, but I learned you have to be careful with the marinade. It's a pretty strong flavor anyway, and it gets stronger as it stays in contact with the chicken. If you put too much marinade on, it'll be over-marinated! We served this with hot rice, pineapple rings, and steamed veggies.

I'm not doing a freezer cooking for December, as we are going to be home for dinner very little in the next couple of weeks. I will do a post soon about inexpensive holiday cooking (appetizer/snacks, desserts, breakfasts, and the BIG holiday meals!). Also, planning ahead for January's freezer cooking. Please share your favorite make-ahead meals and crock-pot recipes with me!