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What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

After baby comes I want to have a freezer full of ready-to-eat meals so I won’t have to worry about cooking dinner each night. What are good meals to cook and freeze?

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After baby comes I want to have a freezer full of ready-to-eat meals so I won’t have to worry about cooking dinner each night. What are good meals to cook and freeze?

The Bump Expert

Squirreling away some precooked meals in your freezer before baby arrives will cut down on some of the stress (and take-out!) during your first weeks as a parent. After a sleep-deprived night and exhausting day of tending to baby’s every need, you’ll feel like you hit gold when you open the freezer and see it stocked with delicious, homemade, heat-and-eat meals. Soups, stews, casseroles, lasagna, and pasta sauces are best for freezing. Meals can be stored in the freezer for up to three months before they spoil or before flavors are affected.

Food-Freezing Tips:
• The nemesis of frozen food is oxygen. If you’re freezing something in a bag, get rid of excess air before sealing it. If you’re using a plastic container, make sure it has a tight-fitting lid and use the smallest size that will fit what you’re freezing

• Use freezer zip-top bags. You may end up with freezer burn if you use sandwich-style bags – they are too thin.

• Freeze in single or double portions and use freezer zip-top bags. It saves room in your freezer, makes for quick thawing (just submerge item in hot water), and lets you defrost only what you need.

• If you aren’t sure how best to freeze a certain item (or long it will keep), check the National Center for Home Food Preservation website.

Freezer-Friendly Recipes:

12 Make-Ahead Freezer Meals for Moms-to-be

Here are some more of our favorite healthy and hearty, freezer-ready meals from The Nest:

Turkey Chili

Healthiest-Ever Lasagna

Baked Pasta with Roasted Wild Mushrooms in a Creamy Thyme Sauce

Zesty Beef Casserole

Squash Stew

Find more recipes from The Nest.

*Updated 10/27/2011

Kelly Alfieri

Q&A: What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

My favorites for freezing are enchiladas, lasagna, eggplant parmesan, baked spaghetti, pasta alfredo with chicken, curried chicken and rice casserole, homemade macaroni and cheese, and soups. Another good one for quick meals is bean 'n cheese burritos. Saute some frozen south-west mix vegetables and add those to make them more nutritious. Add taco seasoning or your own spices to the beans for extra flavor and sear the finished burritos in a dry pan. Wrap them individually in foil or press and seal freezer wrap. Yum! I love asian food too but don't know of any dishes that freeze well. Does anyone have any ideas?

titania9 |

Q&A: What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

I make a large portion of marinara sauce with meat( meatballs, sausage, beef, whatever you like) then i freeze in multiple containers, all you have to do is reheat and make fresh pasta. Another great one is chicken or veal cutlets. I make a large batch, egg wash, bread and cook, throw them in a zip lock and they make great meals, sandwhiches you name it!!

sohara630 |

Q&A: What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

During my last couple of months as I near my DD, I like to make double batches of a lot of things to freeze. Eating spaghetti that night? I make a double batch of sauce that I can use later just by making new pasta, or I can use it for a different meal too, such as a lasagna. I have in other pregnancies frozen a lasagna. Any casserole type dinner does well, and soups do really good too. Cooking chicken? Making hamburgers? Cook extra and store in the freezer. Hamburgers are real easy, just pop in the microwave and you are good to go! =)

ajrobbins |

Q&A: What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

Instead of taking a day to cook and freeze meals, just double your regular recipes for the month before your due date and freeze half. You won't take any extra time and you'll have a months worth of food!

meghay |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

One of my favorite meals is Thai; we make batches of spicy peanut sauce in advance and then freeze them. The meal is easy to assemble... just stir fry a package of frozen veggies, add some chicken or tofu, and then the sauce. The whole meal comes together in less than 20 minutes.

troupersue |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

I don't have any answer to what's good, I just know this isn't a great idea for mom's in the summer. It just doesn't make sense when it's 90 degrees out to have the oven on. I question this, it's subjective to what time of year you have your baby.

score24bob |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

Something great for summer or winter is Japanese Onigiri (rice balls stuffed with whatever you like our favorites are teryaki chicken and gingered carrots since I cant have the fish) they take about half an hour to make and that includes time in the rice cooker, and stay fresh in fridge or freezer, also great for lunchboxes so you dont have to worry about packing those daily, just throw in a rice ball and its good to go. Very healthy option as well.

CindyBrimmer |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

baked ziti, soup and quick dinners that you trust your significant other to make. Try researching the different food cooking websites.

coko98 |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

I bought a few pre-made meals like lasagna & chicken and rice bake, then I made and froze baked ziti, baked pasta with chicken sausage, chili, chicken enchiladas, stuffed twice baked potatoes, teriyaki chicken, and breakfast burritos.

Liz5663 |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

I have hashbrown casserole, beef stroganoff, and pot roast all in the freezer as of now, but today is my last day of work before maternity leave so all these suggestions are going to keep me busy cooking until my little man gets here!

LaurenandMike13 |

What are good meal options to cook and freeze?

I like making large batches of soups (chicken, french onion, potato leek, corn chowder, pasta fagioli, etc…). My hubby also makes a killer pasta sauce with sausage so we make a huge batch in my 16 qt stock pot and freeze quart size containers. Beef Stew is another great option. You can do it in a crock pot and save half for a quick dinner with microwaved baked sweet potatoes after baby arrives. Make a large roast chicken or turkey breast with root veggies and peas. Save the extra meat, gravy and veggies and freeze. Fill a frozen pie crust or top with puff pastry for a tasty pot pie. Also, look at crock pot recipes that you find appealing now. They are great when you are dealing with a newborn and dinner prep and timing can be an issue. I love lasagna, eat some now and store the rest in serving appropriate packages for later. Veal or chicken cacciatore is also easy to do in the crock pot and something you can save in portions for later. Also, remember lunches, when I have one meal serving left, I put together my own frozen meals (chicken in a light balsamic mushroom cream sauce with mushroom and pea orzo and baby carrots is one of my favorites). When freezing, just remember that extra sauce, gravy or moisture is a must. One big tip - Inventory what you have made and are saving in your freezer! This will help you remember what meal options you have!!

jdklein |