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Old 08-11-2014, 11:57 AM
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Default Easy, Healthy, Freezable Recipes

Does anyone here have any good recipes that keep well in a freezer (and don't turn into funny brown mush when thawed)?

I'm looking for something that's relatively easy to make in largish quantities that can then be stored in individual tupperware containers for lunches at work. Healthy is a big plus. I am trying to stick to only whole ingredients (or potentially processed foods with no "weird" ingredients and as few ingredients as possible [e.g. cheese, whole wheat pasta, tomato sauce, fresh salsa, etc. are all okay in my book despite not being homemade]). Also no high fructose corn syrup...

I currently have been doing pizzas from scratch, lasagna, and chili as my main freezable courses. All work wonderfully, but I'd like some variety! I do salads and fruit on the side, which obviously can't be frozen easily, but can be prepared for the week ahead of time.

I like to make enough food for the week on Sundays so that I don't have to think about making lunch before work and I'm able to be lazy, but still be healthy. I can come up with all sorts of meals that I can make and keep for the week, but I want some extra freezer meals in stock so that I can be lazy sometimes.

Ideas?
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:10 PM
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I like freezing soup...pretty much any kind of soup is awesome for freezing. Anytime I make soup for dinner, I make enough to freeze 1 meal (for 2).

Other than that, I'm not very helpful... I freeze the same stuff you do.
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:19 PM
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My OAMC tends to not involve cooking and then freezing the cooked stuff, I prefer to just prep foods and then pull it out to cook when I'm ready. So I'm not sure if this will be super helpful. I like to make bags of chicken and seasonings and sauces that I can either thaw out and then make into a stir-fry, or just dump the whole thing into a crockpot. I'm not sure that will work well for work week lunches though, unless you make it for dinner and then use the leftovers for lunch the next day? You might also be able to just cook big batches and then freeze them.

Stews and chili and soups are definitely excellent for freezing. I also tend to freeze bags of shredded chicken and pull those out to use for a variety of things, like tacos or adding to casseroles and stuff, so you might look at just prepping various meats however you like them and just take it out and add to your salad or whatever.
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:36 PM
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hmmm I hadn't even thought of prepping a meal before cooking it! Of course, now that I look it up, it seems that that's what most people are doing who make a lot of frozen food.

It would be perfect for dinners (if I invested in a crock pot), but for lunches I'm still skeptical because I'm too lazy to even want to make a sandwich!

I guess I could make a week's worth, defrost and cook it on a Sunday and keep it for the week. But then I feel like I wouldn't even bother freezing it in the first place!

The soup idea is great by the way!

I'm trying a sort of meat ragu tonight... I'm crossing my fingers it'll freeze as well as chili, but then I can defrost it and use it as sauce over pasta.
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Old 08-12-2014, 01:12 AM
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I'm making Pizza tonight, and thought I'd freeze some smaller ones... that's such an awesome Ideal, I never even thought of it! So much healthier than prepackage frozen pizzas and just as easy!
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Old 08-12-2014, 03:52 AM
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This question is kind of like 'how long is a piece of string'!

I will freeze pretty much anything I make. Soups, stews, curries, bologneses, even cauliflower cheese!! Pasta dishes like lasagne can freeze. Rice freezes.

What do you like to eat?! Cook up a huge batch and freeze it.

And if in doubt, I always google "can I freeze XYZ"?

Simples!
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:34 PM
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Dizzy - do you not notice that many foods end up with funky textures once they thaw out after having been frozen? For example, I tried to freeze gazpacho once... the thinnest part of the liquid almost separated out (kind of like blood serum in a way) and the rest of it just turned into a gloopy liquid mush.

I'm not even picky when it comes to textures, but that's the last time I'll try that one! I've also heard that pasta doesn't freeze well. I want to try canning salsa and pickles soon though - that should be an experiment!

And GipsyQueen, yes, homemade pizzas are actually super easy (and easy to do a few at once) and they freeze pretty well! I have a recipe for a SUPER EASY pizza dough - it's probably not as good as some of those that require more effort, but for me, the quickness is well worth it. You don't even have to wait for the dough to rise so it only takes a few minutes to make:

3 cups flour
1 (.25 oz) package of active dry yeast
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tsp salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 cup warm water (~110 degrees)

1. Preheat oven to 375
2. Mix all dry ingredients together
3. Add oil and water to dry ingredients
4. Knead all ingredients together until a dough is formed
5. Spread dough on pizza pan and top
6. Bake for 20-25 minutes at 375
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