8 FREEZER MEALS BEFORE BABY COMES

I can’t even begin to tell you how much of a lifesaver it is to have frozen meals ready when you have a newborn.  There may be some families who will receive food from people dropping in, etc. but that eventually winds down. These baby freezer meals have been a huge help TWICE!

It seems silly to think that you wouldn’t have half an hour to prepare a meal, but really, it isn’t easy. So lesson learned is, if you can prepare so that you can open up a bag, dump it in a slow cooker and then hours later dinner is served….do it.

I did a bunch of frozen meals when I was literally in early labour while pregnant with my daughter in 2014, and was so thankful I did-but I wouldn’t recommend leaving it that late. She was born two weeks early, so this time I got it done right at 36 weeks.  If you do it TOO early, the food could get freezer burned, or take up too much room for that length of time.

First of all- Make a list of the freezer meals you want to make.  There are TONS online, whether you have a crockpot/slow-cooker or not, or you just want to freeze some casseroles.

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Then, write out a list of EVERYTHING you need to make all of the recipes so you won’t need to make multiple trips.  I did the bulk of the shopping at Walmart, since it was cheapest, but they didn’t quite have everything on the list so I finished off the rest at Superstore.

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**The cost for most ingredients needed was around $180, and it made 10 suppers (some with 4-6 servings in each), 12 breakfast burritos and 16 protein bars.  That’s with having some ingredients already in my pantry, but buying most.**

Some of these recipes are fairly clean/healthy, and some aren’t. Here are 8 baby freezer meals to help get you through that tough adjustment phase, and give you one less thing to think about.

Ginger Peach Chicken (Makes 2 Bags)

INGREDIENTS 

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  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 12-ounce bag of frozen peach slices
  • 1 sliced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
Cook time: From thawed, 4-5 hours on HIGH
Label your freezer-safe ziplock bag before adding all ingredients in, adding in chicken last.

Serve with: cooked white or brown rice, steamed veggies

Serves 6

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Crockpot Chicken Teriyaki (Makes 2 Bags)

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar (I subbed red wine vinegar)
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-inch ginger root, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 bags frozen stir fry veggies

MATERIALS

  • 2 gallon-sized plastic freezer bag

PREP

  1. Label your freezer bag.
  2. To your freezer bag, add all ingredients. Add chicken to the freezer bag last so it’s the first ingredient poured into your crockpot.
  3. Remove as much air from the freezer bag as possible, seal, and lay flat in your freezer

COOK

  1. The night before cooking, move frozen bag to your refrigerator to thaw.
  2. The morning of cooking, pour contents of freezer bag into your crockpot.
  3. Cook on “low” setting for 4-8 hours, or until chicken is cooked through.

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Slow Cooker Beef Broccoli

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INGREDIENTS

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  • 1.5 pounds flank steak, thinly sliced and chopped into 2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes (optional)
  • 4 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch + 4 tablespoons cold water

COOK 

  1. Label your ziplock gallon size freezer-safe bag.  Add all ingredients into bag, adding in beef last as you want that to go into the slow cooker first on the bottom, and the broccoli first as you want that on top).
  2. Once froze, thaw and cook on low for about 4-6 hours (it will take longer if from frozen).

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Three-Ingredient Ranch Pork Chops

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INGREDIENTS

  • 4-6 uncooked pork chops
  • 1 envelope or packet of Ranch Seasoning Mix
  • 2 cans Condensed Cream of Chicken soup

To prepare right away:

  1. Put all ingredients in slow cooker and cook on LOW for 4-6 hours.

To freeze:

  1. Put all ingredients in gallon size ziplock freezer bag, label with date/instructions/etc (freezes for up to 3 months).
  2. To prepare, thaw (overnight in the fridge, or under running water) then pour everything into the slow cooker and cook on LOW for 4-6 hours.

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Beef Taco Bake

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 20 oz lean ground beef
  • Green pepper,chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 T Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • ½ tsp Thyme
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1/3 cup Chives, chopped
  • 1 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
  1. Spray a 9X13 baking dish with oil, set aside.
  2. Cook rice and then set aside
  3. In a pan on medium heat add onion and garlic and cook over medium-high.
  4. Add ground beef, breaking it up as it browns. Cook for about 5 minutes & add peppers. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until meat is no longer pink.
  5. Add lime juice and seasonings. Stir to combine. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  6. Remove from heat – add rice, tomato sauce, & 1/4 cup of cheese to the skillet and stir to mix well.
  7. Pour mixture into baking dish. Top with remaining Cheddar, cover with tin foil and then saran wrap, and freeze.
  8. To cook while frozen, cover with foil & bake for 40 minutes.
  9. Remove foil & bake an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is melted & edges are bubbling. Remove from oven & let cool for 10 minutes.

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Crockpot Split Pea Soup

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 lb dry split peas
  • 2 cups of diced turkey bacon, about 8 oz  (or 2 cups of any ham product you have on hand)
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 2 cups carrots, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 950 ml of chicken broth (or just a regular size box of broth, close to a Litre)
  • 2 cups water

TO COOK

1.  Place all ingredients into a 6 quart crockpot. Cover and and cook on LOW for 7-8 hours or on HIGH for 4-5 hours.

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Breakfast Burritos

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  • Whole Wheat Wraps
  • 1 Bag Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1 Package Ground Pork
  • 12-14 Eggs
  • Green Pepper, Diced
  • Mushrooms (1/2 Package, Diced)
  • Onion (Red or White, Half, Diced)
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Cook Sausage, and add veggies to the mix once nearly cooked through.
  2. Then add eggs, and take off the heat once eggs are cooked.
  3. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Lay out each wrap, and add egg/sausage/veggie mixture to the wrap, topping with cheese.
  5. Roll each wrap up very tightly.
  6. Heat non-stick pan on medium heat, spray with olive oil, cook burritos on each side until browned.
  7. Once they cool, you can add them into a freezer-safe ziplock bag and label.

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Chocolate Cherry Protein Bars

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http://www.busybuthealthy.com/chewy-chocolate-cherry-protein-bars/

These are amazing, and taste like a treat! Plus you can eat them with one hand, that will come in handy trust me.

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And that’s it!  You’ll be set for a couple of weeks.  You do have to invest some time, but it’s totally worth it on the other end.

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