13 of the Best Freezer Meals

Long time readers might remember when I used to talk about making freezer meals way back in the day. I never stopped making freezer meals, but I guess I didn’t really think to blog about it again. Last year a friend who was about to have her first baby was asking for freezer meal ideas and I found myself a wealth of information I didn’t even realize I had. I thought to myself “hey self, you should blog about this…” but then I forgot about it. Until a couple of weeks ago when my sister asked me for advice on freezer meals and it reminded me that I never shared with you guys. So, I have decided that it’s finally time. 🙂

13 of the best freezer meals

Why Freezer Meals Are the Bomb dot Com

The biggest thing I love about freezer meals is the convenience. It’s a dinner that I don’t have to plan and I don’t have to worry about the ingredients. No crazy amounts of sodium or ingredients I can’t pronounce. Just real foods. I know what’s in it because I made it. So it’s a healthy, quick option that I don’t have to think much about for busy days.

Making Freezer Meals With Friends vs. On My Own

I’ve made freezer meals with friends and I’ve done them on my own and it’s a winner both ways. It’s definitely even cheaper to do freezer meals with other people (we usually do 4-5 people) because you can buy each item in bulk at Costco or Sam’s which saves some pennies, but it’s still a manageable number of people in one kitchen working together. But doing them on my own means I get to pick all my favorite meals to make. 😉 Plus it’s easier to portion the meals out how I’d like them (x number of lunches, x number of dinners, etc).

My 13 Favorites Broken Up Into “How-to-Reheat” Categories:

So today, after many years of trying different recipes and knowing which ones don’t reheat well after being frozen and which ones taste just as good from the freezer as they did the day it was made… I’m ready to fill you guys in on my absolute favorites. 😀

Freezer Meals #1 – #9: Dump Frozen Contents Directly in Your Slow Cooker:

Dump frozen contents directly into slow cooker in the morning. Cook on low all day (approximately 8 hours) and enjoy dinner that night. You can do high for 4-5 hours if you need to, but personally I think freezer meals taste better when they’ve been reheated slowly. But if you’re in a rush, you can definitely reheat them on high.

bolognese (5)Bolognese SauceJust cook your pasta on the day of and serve your piping hot bolognese sauce from the slow cooker on top of it!

Chicken Enchilada Soup (3)Chicken Enchilada Soup When you have this soup in your freezer all you need on hand are your garnishes! An avocado, a handful of cilantro, and a dollop of sour cream. Your basic soup just got awesome. 😉

our chiliChiliOne of our most popular recipes. It is a huge hit every time we take it anywhere. And it’s way crazy simple to make. It’s a favorite of mine to freeze in individual portions for lunches as well! I tend not to top my chili with anything, but if we’re having guests over then I serve this with cheese, fritos, jalapenos, crackers, and sour cream. And if you need to stretch it, serve it over rice or pasta. Trust me, it’s so good! {Side note: you can use pretty much any meat in this and it tastes great. We’ve used beef, turkey, bison, deer, and elk}

Lasagna SoupLasagna Soup*~ Another of our most popular recipes as well as another favorite of mine to freeze in individual lunch portions. See * note below on instructions dealing with freezing pasta.

pioneer woman's meatballsMeatballs Can be frozen cooked or raw!

minestrone soup

Minestrone SoupSee note below on instructions regarding freezing pasta.

pioneer woman's spaghettiSpaghetti SauceLike the bolognese sauce, just cook your pasta on the day off and serve! We usually toss a little fresh parsley and freshly grated Parmesan on top as well.

taco soupTaco SoupI don’t personally add “extras” to my taco soup, but you might like to have cheese, sour cream, jalapenos, and chips on hand for the day you reheat your taco soup!

veggie soupVegetable & Beef Soup*~ Another favorite that I like to freeze in lunch size portions. See * note below about freezing pasta.

~Recipes marked with a “~” indicate that you should cook the meat before freezing.

*Any soup with pasta will not last in the freezer for a long time. I’ve noticed that after about a month, the pasta will disintegrate when it is reheated. So I either dethaw the soup in the fridge before heating it (only heating it long enough for it to become hot – usually over the stove – this is what I typically do when I make soup in individual portions for lunches). OR I leave the pasta out of the recipe entirely and add it to the slow cooker during the last hour of cook time.

Freezer Meal #10: From Freezer to Oven: 

english muffin pizzasEnglish Muffin Pizzas: Put frozen pizzas on a cookie sheet and cook at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Put on broil for the last 30 seconds to toast up the cheese on top.

Freezer Meals #11 – #13: Dethaw Overnight Before Cooking:

I pull these out of the freezer the night before I plan to eat them. They dethaw over night and I cook per usual instructions the next day. Occasionally I’ve just pulled them straight from the freezer and put them directly in the oven and added 15-20 minutes of cook time and that works as well.

baked ziti (3)Baked Ziti

lasagnaLasagna~

white chicken enchiladasWhite Chicken Enchiladas~

~Recipes marked with a “~” indicate that you should cook the meat before freezing.

Bonus Tip (Individual Lunch Size Portions): 

freezer meals lunch portions

I often freeze soups and chili into individual portions so I have ready made lunches. I just put them in the fridge overnight and the next day at lunch they are dethawed and ready to be heated in the microwave.

Pro Tip: Always be sure these little baggies are in a bowl of some sort as they dethaw in the fridge. Every now and then one of the bags will have a little tear in it and it can make a big ol’ mess if you aren’t prepared.

Bonus Tip (Pizza Dough): 

freezer meals pizza dough

This isn’t an entire meal idea, but making your pizza dough ahead of time and freezing it, saves lots of time when it comes to pizza night. This Whole Wheat DoughThis Traditional Dough, or Focaccia Bread as a pizza dough are all winners and have frozen well for us. Put it in an oiled Ziplock bag in the freezer after it has risen, you’ve punched it down, and formed it into a ball. Pull it out of the freezer and put it in the fridge the night before you plan to use it to allow it to fully dethaw. Prepare as normal.

If you have questions about how a specific recipe should be converted to a freezer meal, let me know! I’m glad to help out! 🙂

Have you made freezer meals before? If so, what are your favorite meals to freeze?

Love Rach

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46 responses to “13 of the Best Freezer Meals

  1. Oh man these all look really good- especially that white sauce on the enchiladas. YUM!

  2. I am pinning this! 🙂 When I was preggo, I made a bunch of freezer meals (for when we came home with Brady), but the ones I made didn’t freeze well. 😦 IT was my first time doing it and only a few of the meals turned out well. I will have to try these the next time around! 🙂

  3. Oh wow, these all look delicious. I should be better about doing freezer meals. So convenient! I bet that’s especially so for you guys because you stay so busy and usually eat dinner on the run!

  4. I wish I could hug you right now for making this list!!! haha I need to pin that first image up there so I always have this at my fingertips when meal planning (so like daily) THANK YOU!!!!
    xo, Candace | Lovely Little Rants

  5. These look great! Printing some recipes out to make later. Freezer meals are the best!

  6. I laughed when I saw your tip about thawing soup bags in a bowl…. Because I’ve made that mistake before with frozen breast milk for Jake. (TMI? 😲) These are some great meal ideas! The baked ziti was great, btw! Confession: It’s the first time I’ve actually tried one of your recipes. It’s nothing to do with you, it’s just that I rarely try recipes. Recipes require planning ahead and I’m just not much of a planner (SHOCKING, I know 😉).

    • Yay!! I’m so glad that you liked the baked ziti! It’s good that the first recipe you tried of mine was such a winner. That’s great, friend! 🙂

      And girl, yes, it’s definitely important to be careful how you dethaw frozen liquids! 😉

  7. I love this!!! I can’t wait to try some of these!! The pizza dough is my favorite.. That really would be so helpful!! Thanks, Rach!!

  8. Lots of delicious choices here.
    My favourite freezer meals are chilli and lasagna and anything Mexican usually freezes well.

  9. pinned this! i have made freezer meals before, but we don’t have a large freezer so it can be more of a hassle than it should be lol. my favourite thing was i made a bunch of freezer meals for my friend when she was expecting her 3rd baby. he’s now 5 months old and she said they just finished them, that made me feel awesome 🙂

  10. Love, love, love this roundup! I opened up almost all of the recipes in a new tab so I can check them out individually. I always try to have a few freezer meals on hand (mostly leftovers frozen), and you’re right–it just makes life easier!

  11. I can’t wait to try these!! All of them look really yummy!

  12. Those look great.. I am seriously looking for some good freezer meals.. the older my kids get, the harder it is to find time to cook! – http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com

  13. All of these sound amazing and I love what a great time saver it is for when you’re in a pinch! xo, Biana –BlovedBoston

  14. This is awesome! I love freezer meals (usually just dump it in the crockpot) but excited to check all these out!

  15. Just saved this post for future cooking – this is an amazing reference!! Everything look sooo good… is it lunch time yet?! 🙂

  16. Yayyyy! This is a great reference. Thanks for sharing. I’m always looking for tried and true freezer meals so I’ll be pinning this for later. XO

    P.S. I’m reading Ella Enchanted after seeing it was one of your favs and I’m loving it!!

  17. These all look so good and easy! Definitely saving for future reference 🙂

  18. So many of these look amazing! Printing out a bunch of them now for prepping this weekend! 🙂

  19. Pingback: Freezer Meals (with recipes)! |

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  21. White Chicken Enchiladas & pizza dough here I come! Thanks for sharing, Rach! I’m really going to try and make an effort to make some freezer meals!

  22. i absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE this list rach! seriously – because to be completely honest i’ve needed some new slow cooker meals.

  23. Great ideas!!! I freeze food in individual portions all the time! Occasionally if we have an excess amount of something leftover, I freeze it in bulk and it turns into a quick dinner for a night when I’m in a hurry.

    When I have less time on my hands, I could totally see myself taking the time to do a freezer meal cook day. Do you keep some in your freezer all the time?

    • I don’t keep them in the freezer all the time. Right now I have one freezer meal in there and a couple of individual lunches ready to be pulled out. But that’s about it. It depends on the time of year and how busy we are. If I know we’re coming up on a busy time when I won’t have a lot of time to meal plan and grocery shop, then I’ll stock up and make freezer meals ahead of time so I don’t have to worry about healthy food during that time. 🙂

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