Freezer Cooking: Eating Healthy When You’re Short on Time

I first discovered freezer cooking when I was pregnant for one of my daughters.  Back then, my freezer cooking days were a lot different than they are now.  I would cook for an entire day and fill the freezer with meals that we could eat later in the month.

Sometimes I still do that, but now, I usually have a freezer cooking session that only lasts a few hours since I don’t seem to have as much time as I used to.

Freezer cooking is a great way for busy parents to get a homemade meal on the table in no time flat.  Cooking at home is more nutritious and it’s usually cheaper, so freezer cooking offers the best of both worlds.

If you’d like to begin freezer cooking but are intimidated by the process, I have some recommendations to help get you started.

How to Plan Your Time

There are several ways you can fill your freezer with meals.  The best method is based on how much time you have.  Here are several of the ways I get meals in the freezer on a regular basis:

Double up on your meals for a week.  This is the easiest way to stock the freezer.  Plan a week’s worth of meals, and each night when you’re cooking, make a double batch.  One batch will go in the freezer for later; the other you can enjoy that night for dinner.  Do this for a week, and you have another week’s worth of meals in the freezer.

Have a mini freezer cooking session.  Each weekend, make three or four meals for the freezer.  Double the recipes so that you’re making a total of six to eight meals.  Do this for a few weekends, a couple of hours at a time, and you’ll have a month’s worth of meals in the freezer.

Have a full day freezer cooking session.  This is what I used to do and what some people still do.  Cook all day, and get 30 or more meals in the freezer for the rest of the month.  The rest of the month you’ll do very little cooking.  The best part?  Most of your kitchen mess is made in one day, making clean up much easier in the coming days.

Where to Find Recipes

I find recipes in a multitude of places.

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MyFreezEasy.  I reviewed this last year, and it continues to be a fabulous resource.  Most of the meals that are in my freezer now are MyFreezEasy recipes.  Simply go to the site and choose either the type of meal you’d like to make such as Slow Cooker, Gluten Free, or Traditional, to name a few, or choose based on the type of protein that you want to use.  (This is a great feature if you want to take advantage of a sale at the grocery store.)  Pick your recipes, and MyFreezEasy will give you the directions for cooking as well as a grocery list.  Easy peasy.

There is a fee for this service, but if you don’t want to spend time hunting down recipes, this is the way to go.

Pinterest.  Another go to source is Pinterest.  I use Pinterest a lot for more specialized recipes, especially those for Paleo and Paleo AIP for my daughter.

Cookbooks.  There are several cookbooks you can buy or check out from the library that are especially designed for freezer cooking.

Final Thoughts

I’ll admit, freezer cooking can sometimes be a pain.  I no longer have a big freezer cooking session.  But the beauty is that I don’t have to.  There are many other, easier ways to fill the freezer.

Do you freezer cook?  If so, what meals are your favorite and what strategies do you use to make it easier to fill your freezer with freezer meals?

This post is part of Blogging through the Alphabet, Letter F, hosted by A Net in Time and Hopkins Homeschool.  To read more posts focusing on a topic starting with the letter “F” click on the button below:

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Homeschool Crew Review: Home School in the Woods – The Middle Ages

When we first started homeschooling, I found Home School in the Woods when looking for a timeline book, which Bookworm still uses three years later.  Then, we had the privilege of reviewing several of their products–Project Passport World History Study: Renaissance and Reformation and HISTORY Through the Ages Hands-on History Lap-pack: U.S. Elections–which we loved.  This year, we tried HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study: The Middle Ages, and it was every bit as wonderful as the other products we’ve tried!

About HISTORY Through the Ages The Middle Ages

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

We received this item as an electronic download.  Like other Home School in the Woods products, you’ll need certain supplies to get started.  I still had different colors of card stock and paper from last year when I used another Home School in the Woods product, so I was good to go.  While the initial investment of buying the card stock and colored printer paper may be a bit pricey, once you have the materials, you can continue to use them for other Home School in the Woods products.

I downloaded the material and got to work.  There are 25 “stops” in The Middle Ages program.  This curriculum is suitable for kids in grades 3 – 8, though I did use it, with modifications, with my younger two who are in 1st and 2nd grade.  Home School in the Woods recommends that the curriculum take 8 to 12 weeks.  This can serve as a complete history curriculum, but you can also use it to supplement your current history curriculum.  As a supplement, you could stretch the material out for the entire year.

Most stops include:

  • characters and events to glue on the timeline,
  • hands on activities such as decorating postcards from famous people and writing newspaper articles about the time to enhance learning, and
  • audio snippets

There are usually several pages of text about the historical period also.  For example, Stop #20 has two pages of text that explain who the Vikings are and how they battled.  Stop #21 has three pages of text explaining why the Vikings traveled and settled in new lands.

Our Experience Using The Middle Ages

For previous Home School in the Woods items, we’ve started at the beginning and worked our way through.  This time, we did something different.  When we got the review, the girls were studying the Vikings, so we jumped right to stop 20 and 21, which covers the Vikings.  This product worked as a great supplement to our learning.  The girls created a Viking longship, which they didn’t complete because they thought it was easier to play with as is, without the oars and the mast.

They also listened to an audio portion about living in a Viking settlement.

Then they created part of the lapbook that explained what life was like in a Viking settlement.

Since the girls are a little younger than the recommended age for this product, we skipped some of the activities such as creating newspaper articles.  But the fun thing about this product is that when the girls cycle around to this time period again in their studies four years from now, they’ll be able to use The Middle Ages again and complete all of the activities.

Bookworm also used this product.  He jumped to stops 14, 15, and 16 to learn about religion in the Middle Ages as part of his religious studies.

He worked on several projects and spent so much time on intricate details for the art work that I counted it as art class, too!

Next year, Bookworm will be studying the Ancients, so I’m delighted that the next project in the works for Home School in the Woods is Ancient Rome, which will be out next year.  Just in time for our studies!

Why We Love Home School in the Woods Products

I can’t gush enough about these products.  Why?  They bring history to life, which is great if you have some kinesthetic learners like I do.

Second, this product is very reasonably priced.  The Middle Ages download is currently $33.95.  For that low price, it can be used by all of your children, and it can be used more than once during your child’s elementary and middle school studies.

Third, this product encompasses many subjects including writing and art in addition to the obvious, history.

Fourth, when students finish the entire product, they have a keepsake that they can look back on and review their history.

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

You can follow Homeschool in the Woods on social media to keep up with their latest product development:

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HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

I was one of 100 people to review either The Middle Ages, Ancient GreeceAncient Egypt, or Renaissance & Reformation.  Click on the link below to read other reviews.

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study Reviews
 

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