You’re busy, you’re tired, and the week has barely started. You aren’t quite sure how you will make it through the day, let alone get dinner on the table.
Don’t resign yourself to another dinner out and don’t grab that take out menu just yet. I have some quick easy meals for you that will not only help you create easy meals for busy nights, but net you a few freezer meals out of it too without doing any extra work. Signing up yet?
Hi, it’s Heather from Real: The Kitchen and Beyond, and I am a crazy busy work at home and homeschooling mom. Juggling many positions means that the scenario above is oftentimes me, myself, and I. I’m stressed and busy and when it comes to meal planning I just plain don’t make time sometimes.
These are the weeks where I rely on a simple dinnertime trick. I make a double batch meal. We aren’t huge fans of eating the same meal twice in a row so on night one I will make a double batch of a great freezer meal, eat one batch for dinner, and put one batch in the freezer.
When I put the meal in the freezer I pull a meal out of the freezer for the next evening. Not only does this give it time to thaw for the next day(safely in the refrigerator please), but it helps me make sure to rotate my freezer without things getting stuck in the abyss.
I make sure I keep a variety of meals in my freezer and make sure to date them and attach the name and cooking instructions. From pasta dishes to meat entrees and soups, there is always something in my freezer that catches my taste buds. I like to pair a pasta dish with vegetables, a meatloaf with baked potatoes, and soup with salad and cornbread or biscuits.
All of these are easy dinner recipes that are simple to pull together and my week already has 2 hassle free meals. To make the rest of my week hassle free I utilize the slow cooker for one night, make breakfast for dinner another night, and finish the week with using up leftovers.
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Great Easy Recipes to Double up for Freezer Meals
- Chicken Cheddar Ziti – this is great to throw together in the oven or on the stove-top then freeze the second as a casserole. (See recipe below)
- Homemade Pizza
- Chicken Cordon Bleu
- Mini Bacon Cheeseburger Calzones
- Cheesy Chicken Taco and Rice Skillet – you can make the base of this meal and freeze it for another meal.
- Black Bean Salsa Meatloaf
Great Easy Recipes for Slow-Cooker Meals and Soups
- Easy Crockpot Chicken BBQ Sandwiches
- Easy Crockpot Chicken Enchiladas
- Slow-cooker Creamy Potato Leek Soup
- Chicken Couscous Soup
- Sage Chicken with Acorn Squash
Now for that recipe I promised you. I have the Chicken Cheddar Ziti Casserole I make but here is an easy stovetop method for it.
Chicken Cheddar Ziti
- 2 packed cups cooked shredded chicken
- 1 – 16 ounce box pasta
- 1 – 16 ounce jar pasta sauce
- 1 15 ounce container ricotta
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, diced
- 8 ounce cheddar, shredded
- 1 tablespoon oil
- Boil water for pasta.
- In small pan, sauté onion and garlic in oil.
- Once water is boiling, add pasta and cook to al dente.
- Add chicken, sauce, ricotta, onions, garlic, and cheese to pasta.
- Stir together and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until heated through.
- Serves 4 with leftovers for freezing or lunches.
What are your favorite quick easy meals or freezer meals?
Heather writes about food at Real: The Kitchen and Beyond where the food is (mostly) real and the making’s easy. She believes any one can cook. Just follow the steps, starting at #1. Read, follow, taste, venture out. Don’t be afraid to fail, then try again.
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