This weekend my sister, one of her best friends, and myself made freezer meals. My sister and her friend had done this one time before, and since I am prepping for a surgery and won’t be as mobile to make meals while recovering, I thought it might be a good idea to join them this time. It was quite the experience!
Some of the ingredients
To start the day we had a “minor” technology mishap. My sister had used an app on her iPad the previous time they made freezer meals. The app was very convenient, as you can upload the recipes and select how many of each meal you would like to make, select the ingredients you need, and the app generates a grocery list for you.
We made a lot of meals with chicken 🙂
Sounds great, huh? Until the app decides to not work properly, and you don’t have a grocery list for three people making eleven different freezer meals. Bless my sister’s heart for being able to figure it all out manually because her friend and I were already overwhelmed and clueless about coordinating this whole freezer meal preparation. The idea of freezer meal preparation is a great concept, but it can also be very intimidating at first. We were a little worried about forgetting something or not having enough of a certain ingredient, but my sister knocked it out like a pro! Her friend and I put all of our faith and trust in her and it worked out beautifully!
Me being the butcher for the day 🙂
We started off our shopping at Aldi, but we ended up not getting much there. After leaving Aldi, we made a trip to Sam’s, which is where we got most of our ingredients. M y sister has a membership at Sam’s, but I do not usually shop there because I don’t care to buy groceries in bulk; however, I must say that I was impressed with the price of certain items. Once we got what we needed, we headed home to begin the freezer meal preparation process.
Chicken… it’s what’s for dinner!
My sister labeled all of the freezer bags by color code and name of the recipe. Like I said, she is a pro at this! Each of us had our own color that my sister differentiated by using a colored sharpie marker to label the bags. While she was doing that, I was pretending to be the butcher for the day, and I cut all of the chicken. My sister’s friend prepped the food by removing all of the lids, opening cans, etc. I cleared out a space in the deep freezer to be able to stack our meals in three separate piles and be able to lay them flat. Once all of the ingredients were prepped, we were ready to start assembling the meals.
My sister, “the pro”, labeling the freezer bags!
(She had a little “helper” there too!) 🙂
Surprisingly, the grocery shopping and preparation of the ingredients was more daunting of a task than putting the meals together. When we got to assembling the meals, the time flew by before we knew it. It was a fun day and great bonding time with my sister and her friend.
Assembling the freezer meals…the “easy” part
(It looks like she had a good “observer” there too! I am sure that her husband was interested, as he will be able to partake in benefiting from the fruits of our labor!) 🙂
I transported all of the meals to my house from my parents in their handy dandy freezer baskets, allowing me to keep the bags lying flat, which is essential for optimal storage in the deep freezer. Thank you to my sister and her husband for letting us use their deep freezer for the meantime! I should be all set for surgery, and this will allow me to continue to eat healthy when I won’t be so mobile after surgery. It will also allow my husband to not be so overwhelmed when he is the one that has to take care of me. Knowing all of this going into surgery helps to ease my mind a bit.
Finished product 🙂
As you all know I budget every dime, so naturally I had budgeted to account for making quite a few freezer meals, as I will be somewhat immobile for awhile after surgery. I was delighted when we calculated the costs, and the total cost of my portion of the freezer meals came in one-third under my budget. Talk about being frugal with freezer meals! Best of both worlds! Cost saving and great bonding time! 🙂
Of course, Pinterest was a great resource for finding some good meals to prepare. Here is the link to my Pinterest board, which can link you to some of the posts:
There are links to recipes, tips for organizing meal swaps, and other considerations when you are coordinating a freezer meal swap. It was a great experience. I highly recommend it, and we plan on doing it again in the future.
Have any of you done a freezer meal swap?