Freezer Crock Pot Meals- Prep Day


I posted my second try HERE.
and my most recent batch HERE!

One of my New Year Resolutions…
was to figure out a better system for cooking/cleaning.
Now that I have a crowd…
(a husband, a 4 yr old, 2 yr old and 7 week old)
I knew that I needed a plan to tackle feeding this crew that made it easier and saved us money.
There were far too many nights it would be 5 and
I would have no clue what I was going to make for dinner.
This new system of Freezer Crock Pot Meals has helped TREMENDOUSLY!!!
It saves you time..because the meals are prepped and ready to go….
And it saves you money! Each of my 17 meals only cost us $4.00!

Each recipe gives our family 2 meals…one even 3 meals!
So one day of cooking and I have 17 meals taken care of!
Below I’ve listed the recipes (sourcing the original recipe)
You can download the RECIPES and FREEZER BAG DIRECTIONS here to print…
along with the GROCERY LIST sorted by sections for easy shopping.
Be sure to check over the list because you most likely already have many of the items!
*I added crock pot liners to the list…because they are AMAZING.*

Now I think that some people might do the Prep Work at night..when hubby is home.
But lately my 7 week old is super fussy at that time..and If I’m not holding/nursing him..
I just want to relax by the end of the day! So my plan is to do most of the prep
(even if it’s divided up) during one day. I’m realistic in that it will take me a while…
and probably will be interrupted by melt downs..nap time.. and tea parties..
but It is do able and will be worth it. (Be sure not to leave meat out.
I saved that part to when I knew I could cut/bag/refrigerate without interruptions.)

Here’s how your first attempt at
Freezer Crock Pot Meals should go:
First…start the morning off with a dance party to t swift.
mom hair..wet hair on top of head..is not required. but c’mon… I look good.

Then.. let the kids destroy the house while you chop everything up!
(You can clean the family room up later while they make a mess in their room.)
Hopefully at least one of the bambinos will co-operate and sleep..
occasionally push the battery dead swing with your foot to keep baby asleep…

Take a break to make “lunch” for kids….. be hilarious.
“Girl Faces” will probably be requested. Now that your kids know you are funny you
will never be able to serve a boring lunch again without a revolt.
you have no one to blame but yourself for that.

Label your Gallon sized ziplock bags with each Recipe…
Including the cook time/heat level..and any directions for when you are cooking.
(My husband “made” dinner..and was able to read the bag and make it happen
while I nursed baby. perfecto. mission accomplished.)

These are the recipes that I chose to make for my
first try at Freezer Crock Pot Meals.
I did 3 tried and true favorites..and 4 new ones.
If you are wanting to pick just a few of these recipes…
go with the Chicken and Dumplings..Pulled Pork..and Lasagna. they are our favorites!
Our Picky eater, Sienna, LOVES the cheesy chicken and rice.. and we all LOVE the chicken and dumplings. I just pulled that out to make up tomorrow night. :)
I suggest purchasing most of your items at a store like Aldi’s or Bottom Dollar.
However, When I decided to try this out..it was new years day…
so Aldi’s was closed and I did my shopping at Giant Eagle.
I think I could have spent a lot less shopping at Aldi’s or with coupons.
This time though…..I spent $68.00 for 17 meals…
equaling out to $4.00 per meal for my family.
(The lasagna bag gives 2 meals of lasagna with extra meat sauce for a pasta meal!)
My new routine is to pull out a frozen bag and put in fridge the
night before (at bed or when I’m finishing up dinner) so that it is thawed and ready to go the next day. You could put plenty of these in frozen…it would just take longer to cook obviously.
As far as leftovers with these meals… I love that you can use the pulled pork another day for tacos.. and change up the extra lasagna meat sauce with a different type of pasta. You could divide up even more the soup or the cheesy chicken potatoes if you add more potatoes.

Here are the original recipes I used this time around.
Be sure to download the grocery
and recipe list above for how I made them up!
This was my first try and I’m
happy to share what we did!
If I can do it, a mama with babies at her feet and in her arms, so can you!
I’m excited to put this new system into work at our house.
Sophie kept asking me what I was doing…
I told her I was cooking all day so that later in
the week I could play instead of cook!
She was all about that idea. I think she cheered. ;)


ADDED FEBRUARY 18TH:

MY NOTES ON MY FIRST TRY AT FREEZER CROCK POT MEALS.
** LOVE the Chicken and Dumplings..always have.
that’s why I’m doubling it this next time.
**not a fan of the chicken and rice. too..thick.
**red potatoes turned brown only in ONE of the recipes.. wierd.
So this next time I put the potatoes in a seperate freezer bag to do a little trial..
and see if they turn brown or not. if they do..I’ll just throw in some fresh when it’s time.
**Pulled Pork last time was yummy to use for tacos.. but we really like it with barbecue the most. So I went ahead and poured in the Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue sauce right away this time. :) LOVEEE eating the barbecue pulled pork on tacos with cheese.
it’s delicious. trust me.


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74 Comments

  • Reply
    Jordan
    August 12, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    I am trying this out but i would like to know for the lasagna, do you make the meat mixture and put it in one bag and the cheese mixture in a separate bag and freeze or do you put it all in one bag and freeze?

    • Reply
      natalie
      August 13, 2014 at 10:48 pm

      Hey! I usually have the lasagne be one of the first ones I make..so I just freeze the meat mixture in advance but then use it within a few days and pull out the cheese ingredients from my fridge. I think that if I did freeze all of them, I would do it separate.

  • Reply
    Samantha
    August 17, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    Hey! My husband and I are going shopping and then prepping today for some of these recipes and I am so excited! They all look so yummy and I can’t wait to try it out. Thank you for posting this all AND making shopping and recipe lists downloadable! Seriously so helpful. :)

  • Reply
    Katrina
    August 21, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    Looked over your recipes loving the idea. Hubby and I are starting a farm and spend alot of time outside and with animals . We also have 4 kids ages 15, 10, 4, and 1. My question is would you double or triple the recipe to feed that many? My 15 year old and 10 year old eat as much as my husband can lol and the two younger ones are coming up fast behind them. I usually do all my cooking in the evening and everything I make is homemade, I love my crock-pot but with this new adventure my prep time has been cut in half. Thank you for making this so easy for everyone to follow.

  • Reply
    meredith
    August 23, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    With the chicken and dumplings.. am I supposed to cook the biscuits first? I made it..and just cut the raw buscuits..but they just got really doughy. May seem like a stupid question.. but would like to know for next time!

    • Reply
      natalie
      August 23, 2014 at 9:38 pm

      I put them in uncooked! Maybe try cooking them a little longer in the crock pot! Or cutting them up smaller so they cook through more :)

  • Reply
    Carrie Routch
    October 20, 2014 at 11:51 am

    I did this yesterday afternoon while my husband and baby boy watched football. The freezer is full and I feel so accomplished having all of these awesome meals ready to go for my family. Thanks for the organized grocery list!

  • Reply
    Janelle
    November 8, 2014 at 8:31 am

    Freezer cooking is awesome and I’m always looking for new recipes!
    Potatoes will turn brown/black in the freezer if put in uncooked. So, for the recipe where you put them in raw, I would wait until cooking day to put them in. You can cook potatoes and freeze them. I have done this successfully when we’ve made a huge quantity of garlic mashed potatoes and twice baked potatoes – yum!

  • Reply
    Deborah
    November 17, 2014 at 10:35 pm

    I can’t wait to try these, but I gave 2 questions.

    1. What is “group ginger” in the Teryiaki Chicken?

    2. How much Dr Pepper is used in the Pulled Chicken. It says half a bottle. How big is the bottle?

    Thanks for all of your hard work.

    • Reply
      natalie
      November 19, 2014 at 11:12 pm

      1. typo! it’s ground ginger :)
      2. and I use a can of dr pepper usually! :)

  • Reply
    plasterers bristol
    November 18, 2014 at 11:41 am

    this sounds really good, thanks for posting up this recipe.

    Simon

  • Reply
    char
    November 18, 2014 at 10:34 pm

    We just found out we are expecting number three and need to get our poop in a group. So we will be trying this and continuing to do so. I can not wait to do this. Thank you for making the song list. That helps a ton. Way to go mom

  • Reply
    Katie
    March 9, 2015 at 11:52 am

    When prepping for the chicken recipes do you freeze raw chicken or cook it first? I’m so excited to start prep cooking!

    • Reply
      natalie
      March 9, 2015 at 11:54 am

      Raw! It cooks up in the crock pot :)

  • Reply
    Chris Cassady
    March 14, 2015 at 1:26 pm

    Quick question, I am getting ready to do all my prep tomorrow (I soooo can’t wait), and it says put all in 1 bag but that it makes 2 meals. So after I cook it, can I refreeze the rest or can I split them to make them 2 meals. My hubby HATES leftovers (which sucks for me lol). I’m thinking I can do 2 bags and then when I write on them just write for 1/2 of what the original recipe says? It’s just us and a 2-1/2 yo. :) Thanks so much.

    • Reply
      natalie
      March 25, 2015 at 8:39 pm

      sorry just seeing this! We usually cook it all..and then use the meal within enough time where we don’t need to freeze it.. but if you want to you could freeze it again once it’s cooked!

  • Reply
    Celeste
    March 24, 2015 at 1:25 pm

    I tried clicking on the links for your grocery list and the recipes and bag directions but the links aren’t working.. Please help!!

    • Reply
      natalie
      March 25, 2015 at 8:38 pm

      they are working now! Someone commented they weren’t working and then they were..not sure what happened but they should be good!

  • Reply
    Christine
    March 26, 2015 at 9:28 am

    I can’t wait to try these plans!! My question is that when I go to the grocery list and recipes, I’m not able to print without it being all funky and small-looking. How can I print full-screen? I tried to copy and paste, but I can’t copy…

    • Reply
      natalie
      March 26, 2015 at 6:38 pm

      Sorry you are having trouble! I’ll look into it!!

  • Reply
    Brandi
    August 10, 2015 at 10:36 pm

    Can you share he dumpling recipe? When I click on it it says page not found.

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