I’m headed back to work in mid September, which is equal parts exciting and terrifying. It’s exciting because I love what I do, have an amazing new job and coworkers, and I look forward to peeing alone and drinking hot coffee. It’s terrifying, however, because I’ll be away from my sweet babe all day, and I have less than a month to figure out how to clone myself so I can accomplish ALL. the. things.
Seriously though, how do working moms do it? How is it even possible to kick ass at work, spend enough time with your family, keep the house presentable, and get food on the table that is relatively nutritious? Clones I tell ya … clones must be the answer.
Anyways, I’m not really one to just ‘see how things go’, so naturally I’ve been feverishly squirrelling away as many crock-pot meals as my freezer will allow. I feel so much better headed into the fall knowing I will have meals on deck for hectic days when cooking could be a challenge.
A few weekends back, I pulled together 26 crock-pot freezer meals in three hours. I chose to spread the labour out over two days, but you could easily tackle this in an afternoon.
Here’s a list of the meals I made, with links to the recipes for each. I doubled up to make two of each recipe, and I also made sure that nearly half of the meals are vegetarian. This is my first big experiment with crock-pot freezer meals, so I can’t yet weigh in on which of these are “keepers”. Maybe I’ll do a follow-up post in the winter after we’ve tested them out to share my faves!
- Teriyaki chicken
- Balsamic beef with carrots
- Lime shredded pork
- Lemon garlic chicken
- Chicken fajitas
- Chicken broccoli alfredo
- Cranberry pork roast
- Greens and beans (v)
- Coconut chickpea curry (v)
- Black bean fajitas (v)
- Mexican black bean chilli with cornbread topping (v)
- Hearty tomato and veggie barley soup (v)
- Mushroom and barley stew (v)
Along the way, I discovered a few helpful tips for undertaking a large freezer meal prep!
- Make sure you label all of your freezer bags before you start to fill them. So much easier.
- Chop all of your veggies beforehand.
- Keep a ‘garbage bowl’ close by to toss scraps into so you don’t have to keep walking back and forth to your bin.
- If you add something bulky to the bottom of the bags before any liquids, the bags will be less likely to topple and you’ll have less spills.
- Check the local grocery store flyers before you plan which meals you’ll prep. That way you can choose meats that are on sale and save a load of money.
- After you’ve filled your bags, squeeze out excess air and then spread out the contents so the bags lay flat. You can fit way more into your freezer this way.