People have frequently asked me how I continue to eat clean as a busy, working mom, with young kids. And I do have a little secret that makes it SO much easier!
Wait for it……..
Shortly before I started eating clean, the hubby and I invested some tax return money in a chest freezer from Costco. That and the Blendtec are the two best purchases I have EVER made for my life as a mom. But we’ll talk about the Blendtec in another post.
Just like any new toy, I was super excited to put my freezer to good use right away. So I started learning about how to freeze EVERYTHING. And let me tell you—you can freeze pretty much everything!!
Below is a list of all the things I have successfully frozen and used in my cooking over the last year and how I did it!
Just bag and freeze as is:
(Wash and dry produce before freezing)
Kale, spinach, and other greens
Watermelon, cantaloupe, pineapple cut into bite size chunks (Note: with pineapple don’t waste the core! It’s full of nutrients, but usually too tough to eat. But you can dice and freeze it to put in smoothies!)
Cheese–for chunks of a large block of cheese I wrap in plastic, then foil, then put in the bag
Treats (chocolate, strawberry crumb bars, no bake bars)
Bread (french bread, english muffins, bagels, muffins)
Cook, cool, then bag and freeze:
Cooked brown rice–just bag it and freeze it laying flat. You can let it thaw on the counter while you make dinner, defrost in the microwave, or add it to a dish you are baking/cooking on the stove, straight from the bag
Apple sauce– I have thawed it in the fridge for the kids to eat, as well as used it in recipes once thawed with no issues.
Summer squash and other garden vegetables–some may need to be blanched before freezing. See here for more info!
Orchard fresh peaches and apricots–just blanch enough to peel and slice, then cool, bag and freeze!
Taco meat–I always save the extra meat from dinner in a freezer bag for another meal
Pulled pork–same as above
Roasted sweet potatoes–dice them up, roast them in the oven, and freeze in a bag for a great breakfast hash or side dish to dinner!
Freeze in a metal (make sure it’s well greased) or silicone muffin tin, then pop into freezer bags:
There are also tons of freezer to crockpot recipes that require no cooking ahead of time!
Here are my favorites!
As you can see, the possibilities are ENDLESS! Thanks to the freezer, any meal can be simple and convenient. Last night for dinner we had Balsamic Chicken, (thawed from the freezer and grilled), brown rice (thawed the freezer bag directly in the microwave and served), and frozen peas. Today for breakfast I pulled out Carrot Cake Power Muffins and popped them in the microwave for about 1 minute.
No clean up.
And no extra work!
Just freeze the leftovers of whatever you make!
And before you know it, you will have a stockpile of frozen meals and snacks to choose from–anytime you need them!
How do you use the freezer to make clean eating more convenient?