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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Frugal Kitchens 101 - Convenience Foods for the Freezer

Frugal Kitchens 101
The freezer remains a very popular method for store foods for later use. Despite the fact that from the moment a food is placed in the freezer it costs you in terms of electricity until the food is used, the freezer continues a good frugal choice when used properly. A freezer will:

  • help lessen the temptation to stop through a drive-through, pick up fast food or order take-out
  • save trips to the grocery store
  • increase the ability to take advantage of sales and bulk meat purchases
  • enable the use of homemade frozen convenience meals, dishes and quick starts.
The following are a few ideas of some of the things that can be easily made then frozen for later use. The following are a few of mine. For more ideas take a walk through the freezer section of the grocery store making a list of those that look or sound appealing. Do an online search for OAMC that will bring up several recipes all suitable for freezer meals. Here are a few things I keep in my freezers but it is no way an exhaustive list.

Quick meal starts I keep in our freezers include:
  • pre-cooked seasoned/unseasoned meat cubes, slices and strips - good for wraps, sandwiches and salads as well as adding to soups, stews and casseroles
  • pre-chopped vegetables - onions, sweet/hot peppers, celery for adding to soups, stews and casseroles
  • pre-chopped fruits - fruit smoothies
  • stocks - quick soup/stew starter
  • small quantities of pre-made pie/bread/pizza doughs - quiches, pies, bread bowls, pizza
Homemade convenience meals and dishes I keep in the freezers include:
  • lasagna
  • quiche
  • shepherd's pie
  • cabbage rolls
  • a few homemade casseroles
A few additional ideas that I have tried at one time or another that sometimes find their way into the freezers:
  • waffles/pancakes
  • burritos
  • egg rolls
  • omelet mix (uncooked)
  • homemade stuffed pockets

6 food lovers commented:

A Year on the Grill said...

I am learning a lot about living with what you have in the fridge...

great reminders

Anonymous said...

Mmmmm! Just made some Chicken Pot Pie (without the crust) for the freezer!!


Garden Gnome said...

Hi Dave :) The idea of keeping a lot of stored foods on hand really is a North Americal ideal although I suspect other northern countries do the same especially those in rural areas. Those who access to fresh daily markets are less likely to store food. Using what's in the fridge is a great idea and in some ways it forces you to be a bit more creative.

Garden Gnome said...

Hey DD :) There you go. The makings for chicken pot pie in the freezer sounds great. Good to see you stocking up.

Chey can cook! (and more) said...

i can't wait to have a house and a 2nd freezer so i can pre-make a lot of this stuff for dinners on the go!

Garden Gnome said...

Oh Chey you will really enjoy a 2nd freezer! It can save you a lot money in the long run.