Freezer Crock Pot Meals

With such a great turn out for my first post (over 1,200 likes of that post alone on facebook!) in freezer crock pot meal preparation I couldn’t leave you all hanging without posting for each and every time I did something crazy like that again! Today we had Chicken Taco Soup (one of my favorites!) and sadly saw that I only had 2 more meals left from the adventures of the first post. Not bad though. I had 34 meals from that and they lasted me from the end of July until now. I obviously didn’t use one each day. If I had time to cook something I would, or often we would have left overs as each recipe was more than just one night’s worth of food. I like it that way though, it stretches out the easy meals for the days you really need them.

This time around I wasn’t as crazy. I only did 6 recipes and doubled all of them. It only took me about 2 hours of prep time. 12 meals in 2 hours – not bad! The even better part? It only cost me about $75! That averages out to $6.25/recipe – many of which will last at least 2 days (some more!) bringing it down to around $3.00 a night to feed a family!

Resources

If you’re looking for more recipes and tips, there’s a GREAT e-cookbook that has more recipes and shopping lists. This would be a great way to fill your freezer for a long time!

FromYourFreezer_Cover_final

Check it out!

The Recipes

I have the recipes I used linked below. They take you to another blog that I started focused on allergy free/friendly cooking (since my son has so many food allergies). These are the recipes I used in the shopping list. I made 12 meals by doubling all of these.

Chicken Taco Soup
Chicken Tortilla Soup
Ham and Pineapple with Rice
Bacon Wrapped Chicken with Rosemary
Sloppy Tamale Pie
Enchilada Wraps

The Process

Before you start working with the food, label your bags. I write a short description of the directions (cooking time and what to add or serve with).

Write meals on Freezer bags for meals

Like last time, I started by washing and chopping all the veggies. This time around I didn’t have that many. If you have a food processor – use it! It will save you a ton of time (and tears from the onions). The onions that I used were about a cup chopped/onion. Once you have the onions processed, shred the carrots and zucchini, then chop the bell peppers. Start browning your ground beef for the Sloppy Tamale Pie with all the veggies while you work on everything else. Just remember to give it a stir every now and then. When it’s done, drain it and set it aside so it has time to cool.

Browning the meat for Freezer Cooking first

Tip!

Pull out 2, 1-gallon pitchers (or as many as you have). This little tip will save you a headache of the bag falling over on you while trying to fill it! Slide the open zip lock bag into the pitcher while you’re filling it with food. It will stay upright without you having to hold onto it! Fill, seal, then pull the bag out!

use gallon pitchers to hold zip lock bags use gallon pitchers to hold zip lock bags

Since I wasn’t doing a ton of meals this time around, I just did once recipe at a time. I added the onions first since this was a pretty common ingredient, but then I just added the ingredients for the recipe I was working on.

The Shopping List

Again, I doubled everything to make the 12 meals. BUT the shopping list here is posted for only 1 of each recipe. That way you can how much or little you want. I also included the spices this time (most of these you’ll already have in your pantry and only need a teaspoon or so of).

6 slices bacon
bay leaf
2 bell pepper
2 15 oz cans black beans
1 12oz broth or beer
1 carrot
15 pieces chicken
1 16 oz can chili beans
chili powder
1 4 oz can chopped green chiles
cumin
3 15 oz can diced tomatoes w/green chilis
1 10 oz can enchilada sauce
1 large (28oz?) can enchilada sauce
40 oz frozen corn
0.50 cup grated cheese
1 lb ground beef
~2.5 lbs ham
minced garlic
2 cans olives
4 onion
pepper
2 cans pinapple chunks
rosemarry
salt
2 packets taco seasoning
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
2 15oz cans tomato sauce
1 zuchinni

There it is! Hope you enjoy! Please let me know how it went for you – it really is so great to hear from all the people that have found and used the recipes from last time!

*This post contains affiliate links*



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48 Responses to Freezer Crock Pot Meals {Round 2}

  1. Melissa F says:

    I love your site… just found it a few weeks ago from Pinterest.

    Sorry if I’ve missed it somewhere, but how many servings are in each of your bags? We are a family of six and I just want to make sure I make the correct portions :-)

    Thanks!!

  2. Kate says:

    The chicken taco soup…I made it from the last round, but it’s still in the freezer yet to be tried…my question: do you drain the beans? I didn’t and it seems like a LOT of liquid in there once you add in the broth.

    • Jessica says:

      I think I do – I usually drain and rinse all canned beans so I may have not specified that out of habit on my part – I’ll go edit that! I’m sure it will be ok – you could try adding crushed tortilla chips to the soup to soak up the extra liquid (it’s my favorite way to eat this one!)

      • Vonda Clancy says:

        you could also add potatoes or rice to absorb some of the liquid….or allow it to simmer uncovered at the end…

  3. Valerie says:

    I have some recipes that have the step of sauteing onions and garlic etc before adding to the crockpot. What do you do with those kinds of recipes? Do you just skip the sauteing? Thanks.

    • Jessica says:

      Hi Valerie,

      Depends on the recipe. I might go ahead and saute them then freeze (would match the original recipe the closest), but just throwing them in un-sauted would work too, they cook long enough that they’ll be soft, just lacking the sauted flavor. That really didn’t answer your question – honestly, I would skip the step, but just because I’m all about saving time :-)

  4. Esther says:

    Just wondering when you say that your grocery list is enough for one recipe does that mean when you go shopping you double this list to make these meals? For instance, should I buy 2 – 2.5 lb hams, 4 green peppers, etc?

    • Jessica says:

      I do double it so that I have 2 of each recipe. I left it as one recipe worth so if people only wanted to do one meal worth they could.

      • Emily says:

        Hi Jessica,

        I also wondered about the doubling thing. You said you doubled the grocery list, was the total of the doubled grocery list $75 or is that approx how much it would be for just the list not doubled??

        Thanks!

        • Jessica says:

          Hi Emily,

          I did double the grocery list and the total was for the doubled list. So if you purchased everything on the list as is (only 6 meals worth) it should come out to about $37.5 (obviously depending on your grocery store prices and sales you find :-) )

          Happy cooking :-)

  5. Alyssa McLane says:

    hi i love your blog came across it on pinterest my family loves most of these recipes & it would be so much easier on me as a busy mom to have them ready made & good to go, my question is do you cook the meat before you freeze it or do you leave it raw?

  6. Hi Jessica,
    It looks like we think alike. I like your plan and recipes. Thanks for
    visiting my blog, I hope you find some recipes that you would like to try.
    Christy
    fullofcrock.wordpress.com

  7. Tammy Malone says:

    First, I’m new to Pinterest. I came across your 34 meals while trying to get freezer crock pot ideas. I can not find those meals or that shopping list anywhere. Can you please point me in a direction? I love this whole idea of getting the meals ready a head of time. I have a 17 year old son, a 12 year old son, and a 9 month old son. I am all about trying to make more free time for our after school hours. Thanks!!

    • Jessica says:

      Hey! If you click on the “food love” link on the top of my page the freezer cooking meals and shopping list post is in there. Hope you find it helpful!

  8. Dale says:

    I just came across your site from pinterest, and I am very excited to start trying your recipes.

  9. Amanda May Morrison says:

    Thanks so much for posting this. I am definitely going to be doing this. We are always looking for way to reduce our spending, and increase time spent with kids. I love posts like this :)

  10. libby says:

    it is good

  11. Kayla says:

    Hello, I was curious what size crock pot you’re using. Mine is only an 8 cup capacity crock pot. I’m wondering if I could or how I could still use your recieps. They all sound great so i’d really like to try. I’m hoping I could just cut the recipes in half? Please let me know! Thank you!

  12. Dido says:

    I really appreciate your great example of doing this huge task. I’ve printed out both of your Once-a-month extravaganzas. Thanks for all the pictures, too. That helps. It must feel great to feed the family in such an economical way. I was going to say, it would be helpful, if you do another one, if next to the item on the shopping list if you also label how it is to be prepared for the meal (chopped, sliced, etc). Because then instead of having to refer to all the recipes at the same time we can go from that list, and get all the veggies and meats ready to go, and then assemble. I love the picture I found on Pintrest of the bowls and bowls of chopped things on your counter. That felt so efficient. So instead of everyone each having to do this back-and-forth figuring out of how to chop or slice, having it ready to go would be a great help to everyone. Just my two bits. Thanks again!!

    • Vonda Clancy says:

      Maybe this idea will help…after I printed out the recipes and shopping list (Both of which I actually converted to a Word document)… I took a couple of extra minutes and wrote what I needed to do with each item… then I added it to the word document and saved each recipe group together so I just have to pull up the recipe group the next time I want to use it. I use group names like Mexican Minute or The Chicken Queen… anything that will remind me of what is on the list…

  13. Mandi Cromar says:

    I found your 34 crock pot meals in a day on Pinterest and have been in love ever since. I have made 8 of your recipes 3 times since September. My printed out shopping list from your site is wrinkled and written all over with food spatters on it. My boyfriend absolutely loves them! I do marine research 100 miles from home every few months, so I set him up with about 9 frozen crock pot meals and they lasted him about a week a piece. Tonight we’re having your spaghetti sauce. I really look forward to some of these new ones! Thank you so much! Congrats on the new baby!

  14. Kristina Lane says:

    Hi! Just found your site on pinterest!! I’m curious if its chicken broth or beef broth we need on the shopping list :)) thanks!

    • Jessica says:

      I’ve always used turkey broth, but simply because I have a freezer full of it (I make a ton when I cook a turkey), but Chicken would be what I would get, unless it’s a beef recipe then I would get beef :-)

  15. Jennifer says:

    Thank you so much for all your time and effort you have put into helping others learn how to fix freezer meals. Thank you for your recipes and shopping list. This has made mine and my friends lives soooo much easier. I do not like being asked every night, “What’s for dinner?”. I knew I did not really have anything ready or I knew it would take awhile to prepare . Now being asked that question is much easier to answer and I like answering it. lol Thanks again.

    • Jessica says:

      I’m so glad you find it a help. This is the exact reason I do it too! I really don’t “like” cooking, so spending one day to have a bunch of meals to not have to think about is so wonderful!

  16. Kristy says:

    I’m so grateful to have found your site! A friend of mine died of breast cancer in October. She left a husband and two young daughters. I know he is stretched extremely thin. A friend of mine and I are going to make a bunch of these meals for them, so he will have some easy dinners waiting for him and the girls when they come home from a long day. Thank you so much!

  17. Heather says:

    #10 cans (empty:) also work great for holding the bags open. You can fold the zipper portion over the outside of the can to keep it clean. You can also line the ziplock bag with crock pot liner bags. Out of the freezer, into the crock pot. No dishes! Gets a bit expensive, though.

  18. Christine says:

    This is brilliant. I am now staying at home after a 29 year career. I spend so much time in the kitchen and challenge myself to find nutritious dinner ideas on a budget for my family of 4 (2- teenaged boys, always starving!). Thanks for being so organized and sharing. You are helping me! I am so motivated to do this! Blessings to you!

  19. brittany pritchett says:

    Wow! I did round two recipes and they got so many compliments from my family that I will be making them again. It was so nice to walk in the house and a great tasting and smelling meal was ready to go. You are amazing!

  20. Jeannie says:

    I just did this! used the shopping list, came home and prepared all the meals….SUPER easy and so excited about trying this some more!!!!

  21. Leah Biek says:

    I could kiss you. I’m a homeschooling mother of 5 with number 6 on the way. I’ve been looking for something like this to make my life easier, and stumbled across this on Pinterest. Thank your for the time you put into this.

  22. addy says:

    Hey girl, we tried these meals this month and were impressed. We loved the mexican inspired dishes. We ate them with tortillas or corn bread. Looking forward to trying some more :)

  23. JenCunningham says:

    Just a thought, you could print the recipes and instructions on labels, that you just re-use…may save you some time so you don’t have to write them all out. Thanks so much for all the great recipes and ideas!Love your site!

  24. Colleen P. says:

    LOL-having a real giggle over the gallon jug advice, because a couple of years ago I purchased four of them from the dollar store to use during canning season, and I use them CONSTANTLY for other things. They do work really well for this application and for so many others. They nest together so they get stored in a stack in the laundry room.

  25. Britni says:

    I just came across your website and am sooo excited! My daughter also has food allergies (milk, eggs and peanuts) so it’s awesome to have so many meals prepped that she can eat too without the fuss. Thanks!!

  26. Julie Beck says:

    Thanks for the great recipes!! I really enjoyed the chicken taco soup. On my first attempt at this, I missed your suggestion to use a food processor for the onions…was I ever sorry!! Thanks again…a real success!

  27. Kate says:

    Boyfriend and I have never meal planned before – would always go to the grocery store, pick up random things we wanted, and spend a lot on a homemade meal for dinner just for the two of us. Then we would always have lean pockets for breakfast and frozen meals for lunch – which are expensive for what they are – and are not fresh! We did 4 of the 6 recipes posted here (leaving out the pineapple one as he is not fond of it – and the bacon chicken as soggy bacon is not my favorite) and it was great for the work week! We had about 6 servings of each of these – all around 300 or so calories which was perfect. Boyfriend didn’t love the Chicken Tortilla Soup, but all others were incredibly delicious! Thanks for the time, effort, and ideas!

  28. Merideth says:

    I just found your site while browsing for freezer meals on Pinterest. What a great idea! I love that you have given detailed directions on how to make this work. I plan to give it a try over the Thanksgiving holiday while my kiddos are with their grandparents! :) Thank you so much for sharing!

  29. Savanna says:

    My husband and I had a lot of fun making these freezer meals. However, there’s one thing I feel I must warn you about! The chicken taco soup, chicken tortilla soup, sloppy tamale pie, and enchilada wraps are all pretty much the same thing. Not only that, buy it’s hard to make Mexican dishes that my family dreads eating and we now have week-old tubs of leftovers from the chicken taco soup. All that enchilada sauce did not balance well with the food and it honestly just isn’t good. It has been over a month since we put these in the freezer and we just don’t have the stomach for that much of the same stuff. We still have three left in our freezer. If you plan on not modifying these at all, the best advice I can give you is to use your favorite enchilada sauce; do not go get what’s cheapest at Walmart. That being said, we were pleasantly surprised with the bacon-wrapped chicken and will definitely make that dish again!

  30. Savanna says:

    (We doubled the recipes, ending up with eight bags of slightly varied taco soups)

  31. HOLLI says:

    i’m looking forward to trying some of this recipes over the weekend. I have found that not planning meals is very costly. I’m hoping that by planning ahead will save my family some money.

  32. Leslie West says:

    My daughter is getting married in June and would like to do meals for 2. The shopping list is for only one of each recipe, but because they are feeding 2 people could we use the shopping list and have enough to make double of each recipe for 2 servings each?
    Thanks

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  34. Marianne says:

    I write the instructions on an index card. Then I double bag the meal and place the directions in between. I then use the outer bag again. This way I don’t have to keep rewriting the cooking directions. If we like it we keep the card if not it goes away.

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