Save time and money by creating your own crockpot freezer meals. These easy recipes can be prepped in a few hours and will keep for up to 6 months in the freezer! I stocked my entire freezer prior to the arrival of our daughter and it was wonderful having access to easy prep meals.
Before I jump into the recipes here’s some quick tips and insights to help make this process much easier. Each recipe is designed to feed two adults with little to no leftovers and should be considered more of a main courses rather than full meals in a bag. However, each bag will be referred to as a meal for simplicity sake. I have added suggestions of what sides we serve each recipe with.
Each recipe below will create two bag meals. You can double each recipe to create a larger meal and/or double each recipe to create more than two – two person meal bags. Once frozen, meals will last for up to 6 months in a standard freezer.
Disclosure: These are not my recipes. I will try to find the original recipes and link to it for crediting purposes. I have previously made each recipes and can confirm that they are delicious! Feel free to modify to your taste.
The Day Before Prep:
Step 1: Clean your kitchen and make sure you have a few sets of measuring cups and spoons available to use. You will also need a roll of paper towels, a cutting board, chopping knife and a few spatulas.
Step 2: Review your shopping list and remove any items you already have. Then go shopping to get what you need. For sanity sake, I never do grocery shopping and meal prep on the same day. It just makes for a terribly long day.
Step 3: Clean and organize your freezer and make space for the intended meals. From experience, I know you will need approximately 1 square foot of freezer space which roughly one shelf on a average sized side by side freezer/refrigerator combo.
Step 4: Using a permanent marker, label your gallon ziplock bags with the recipe name, cooking instructions and recommended side dishes. Writing a side dish recommendation on the bag makes meal planning easy since you can just pick which bag based on what sides you have in stock.
Step 5: Lay out all your room temperature ingredients including spices, seasonings and oils the night before along with your labeled bags.
Day of Meal Prep:
I start as early as possible especially now that it’s summer and the days are warming up. Invite a friend over to help, tune on some tunes or open a bottle of wine. I can’t drink since I’m expecting but by all means do whatever makes you the most comfortable even if that means doing this bra-less and in sweats. 🙂
Add all ingredients (minus the meat) to each labeled bag one by one. If you are so inclined you can figure out how many recipes have over lapping ingredients and chop multiple veggies at the same time. For first timers, I really recommend going slow and completing each recipe one by one. It makes measuring a lot easier too. Clean as you go! Use paper towels to clean the seal of the freezer bags from any splattered ingredients.
Add all room temperature ingredients (plus frozen corn, peppers, ketchup and other minor refrigerated items) to all the bags first! Once all bags are done, add the fresh or frozen chicken last to all the bags at once. I prefer to use frozen chicken breasts. This process can take some time so it’s important that the chicken is the last thing you add so that it’s not sitting out for a prolonged amount of time!
Freezing Tips: Let out all excess air. Freeze each bag flat and fold the bag in half on itself to save space.
Cooking Tips: For best results, the crock-pot should be at least half full with your meals so choose the appropriate size crock-pot for cooking each meal.
2 lb beef roast (any kind, cut into large cubes) or pork roast
3 Cups beef broth
5 potatoes, cubed
3-4 carrots, sliced
3 pounds beef chuck roast or pork roast
1 onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
Juice of one lime (1-2 tablespoons)
1 Tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
Before serving stir well again to mix the meat with the sauce. Taste meat and season with more salt to taste.
2 c beef broth
1/4 c soy sauce
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 cloves of garlic chopped
2 bay leaves
3 lb beef shoulder roast, trim the fat
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
8 french bread rolls
16 slices of provolone cheese
Serve with a little bowl of the cooking juice for dipping. Serve with salad or fries.