With working a full time job, and driving 80 miles a day (between preschool-for Mason, grandpas house - for Connor, work for me then home) I'm lucky to be walking in the door by 5:45. This leaves me with zero ambition for making a dinner much more complicated than a box of mac and cheese. Paul typically does most the cooking. A) Because he's better at it and B.) because he and the boys get home around 4:00.
With nicer weather coming, I figured having some oven or crock pot ready meals on hand would give Paul and the boys more outdoor time - and give our tummies I nice reward too.
I started my prep by scouring Pinterest. Where I found lots of great tips and recipes by searching for "freezer cooking" or "plan ahead meals". I looked for recipes that sounded the most simple - with ingredients the kids were use to eating - that way they would be more likely to try something new, and I had a lot of necessities on hand. After selecting my top recipes I started my lists - what I needed, and what was on hand.
I ended up spending around $65 at the store and made roughly enough food for 13 meals. Based on my math (when I figure a rough est. for supplies I had on hand) my total comes to about $6 a dinner - dirt cheap! Of course some things need to be added the day of - veggies to go with the casserole, rice or taco toppings for others.
Here's what I chose:
HERE at Freezer Friends
HERE at Ring Around the Rosies
HERE at 101 Cookbooks. (note: I added venison burger to the red sauce).
Not pictured - Paul also Smoked a pork butt for 3-4 meals worth of pork and I have this recipe in the crock pot for dinner tonight. I'll follow up with a review on whether or not all these items are a hit, or a miss.
I'm looking forward to having more variety - and simplicity in our evening routine!