This week I’m on vacation from my full time job, so what better time to stock up the freezer with meals to get us through some of the nuttier hockey nights? As I mentioned last week, I am spending the bulk of the month getting my life together as much as possible in advance of the hockey season insanity.
Based on the plan (side note: you can download your own copy here and follow along. That whole misery loves company thing is true. Also, I like knowing that I’ve got company when I am tackling bigger projects), I want to get a few dinner options into the freezer, as well as a few miscellaneous things that will make dinner time easier.
My criteria for freezer stock up is fairly straightforward. I need things that I can throw in a slow cooker in the morning. Or bits and pieces I can cook up quickly and use in several meals. Of course, they are boy approved and easy to assemble. Even with the week off, I don’t have a lot of patience for the elaborate.
So what’s going into the freezer? Here’s my list:
-Ground beef (three lbs of taco, three lbs of plain, cooked)
-Muffin tin meatloaves (so handy for nights where we all wander in and out at different times)
– Pulled pork. I love the recipe from the 100 Days of Real Food blog. Quick, easy and everyone in the house loves it. Win, win, win. Two recipes of that will divide into three or four meals (depending on the size of the pork shoulder) that will serve everyone in the house.
-Three different marinated chicken recipes. I like the honey mustard, pesto and teriyaki recipes from Gimme Some Oven, so I grab two trays of Costco chicken thighs or chicken breasts, put enough to serve a family meal (with an extra or two for lunch leftovers) into Ziploc freezer bags. Then you dump the marinade of choice in and into the freezer they go. Then it’s a matter of putting them into the Instant Pot when I get home from work and making the sides. Ta da, dinner with very little thought.
On top of the dinner related things, I will be mixing up a double batch of the following:
Snacks & Breakfast Type Stuff
-Banana muffins. I use a recipe from a cookbook I got at a plowing match years ago. These plowing matches only come to our area once in a blue moon, which makes them the social event of the season for my dad. I went for one day and all I had to show for it was this cookbook. But it has a few tried and true recipes that I go back to time and again, so….worth it. But don’t tell my dad.
–Pumpkin muffins. I use this recipe because we always have a surplus of maple syrup and I will take any excuse to use up some of it. Turns out there is only so much I can give away.
This might get us to the Christmas break when I can repeat the stock up. Or it won’t and my boys will have to be satisfied with whatever my mom-guilt allows me to call dinner. Let’s be honest, it’s probably a bit of both.
See you at the rink.