Advance meal prep is where it’s at when trying to be a lazier parent. Although I truly love being in the kitchen and can spend hours creating, cooking, mixing, etc…. There are days when I don’t have time, or I just don’t feel like it. I started doing serious advance meal prep when I was pregnant with my first child, almost seven years ago (!!!!) And I have since done that at the end of each pregnancy. As the due date approached, I would start cooking like crazy and freezing a bunch of stuff so that we would have an abundance of wholesome foods to eat once the new baby arrived, without me having to spend much time in the kitchen, therefor having more time to snuggle with my new baby 🙂 Combine this with the generosity of friends dropping off food, we always had a very easy and healthy first 6 weeks postpartum. I did this with all three pregnancies, and for some reason, once we ate all the food in the freezer, I would go right back to cooking everyday from scratch. But not this year! I have already started filling up my freezer and will keep doing it.
I am sharing this post with you for two reasons:
- Maybe you haven’t been doing this for your family, and I can help inspire you to start making big batches of food and freezing them for future meals, therefor easing your stress around meal prep at times.
- To share with you some of favorite go-to freezer meals that we eat throughout the “winter”.
This was my freezer last year at this time, since I was about to give birth to my 3rd baby. There are several batches of muffins: carrot muffins, zucchini muffins, blueberry muffins. There are several soups: carrot soup, butternut squash soup, lentil soup. As well as some veggie stews, and chili. There are some curries in there and some apple sauce. As well as my go to raw energy bites. I had also made huge batches of raw granola, that I kept in the pantry.
I cannot share enough how nice it is to have a freezer full of nutritious wholesome meals. If I have time and energy, I truly like prepping my meals fresh, but I also like to be able to stay out an extra hour if we are having a good time somewhere without the worry of having to go home and cook a meal. Or if I know ahead of time that I will be out late, I can take one of the pouches of food out and let it thaw in the sink all day so that when dinner time comes we will have a meal just waiting to be heated.
And I love having a variety of muffins ready to be grabbed for my daughter’s school lunches and snacks.
I use a vacuum sealer. It keeps food fresh longer, without the unfortunate layer of ice that can form in jars. And it also saves so mud space. The soups and stews can be stacked, avoiding the clutter of too many jars.
I hope you find this post useful. What do you do to make your life easier in the kitchen? Any tips are greatly appreciated! I truly value eating nutritiously, and I also value having fun, being lazy and living in the present, which a little bit of thinking ahead can help me accomplish 😉
The extra bonus is you are saving your family money. Too many parents end up ordering unhealthy take out. You are not lazy but smart!
Thanks! And its true, it does save money😊
When did planning ahead become laziness? Lol! I get your point. We use a vac sealer and also home can. I am also a huge crockpot fan. To come home to the smell of whatever dinner is ready to eat, is truly wonderful. I believe I would call it freedom. Bob
You are right Bob, it IS freedom!! Without compromising my nutritional values 🙂 And thanks for reminding about the crockpot! We have one and I just don’t use it enough. I’m gonna get on that!
Yes, I love having a few meals ready to go in the freezer but should make more…I love my slow cooker and use it a lot 🙂 it s only a little prep in the morning and ready to eat when we need to. One of our favorite is chicken with a tomato/tamari/onions/garlic sauce. Then I add some sweet potatoes or potatoes and carrots (sometimes broccoli). And we serve that with rice or quinoa (Used to cooked them in a rice cooker but now in the Thermomix.) Easy.
Thank you Julie! Another person motivating me to pull out my slow cooker 😀
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