Cooking for Days…Round 2

Hey friends here is my round two recipes for nap-time bulk cooking! I am able to get most of the cooking and prep done during Hudson’s nap. He usually sleeps for 2+ hours which is more than enough time to brown meat or boil soup, let cool and place in freezer bags.

The first is classic comfort food for any Montana girl, Beef Stew with Potatoes and Carrots. This is one of my all time favorite meals, Husby too. I LOVE it as a make ahead frozen meal, its hearty and so perfect for cold winter night.

Beef Stew

1.5 lbs of beef stew

1 box of Pacific beef broth

1 yellow onion, quartered

4 russet potatoes, cubed

1 qt of  cremini mushrooms, quartered

4-5 carrots, peeled and cut to preferred size

1 packet beef stew seasoning

2 sprigs of fresh Thyme

  1. Brown stew meat, salt and pepper to taste
  2. Add uncooked onions, potatoes, carrots, and mushrooms to the freezer bag.
  3. Pour half the beef broth into the bag with the seasoning packet
  4. Add cooled, cooked meat to the bag, seal and freeze flat

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If you are going to eat one batch the day of prep a quick gravy from the drippings would be heaven. A gravy is possible later but only if there is enough liquid in the crock pot. If so add a little flour and butter to a pan, make a quick roux and add the liquid from the crock pot to the roux. Stir continually until smooth and thickened. Cook all ingredients until potatoes and carrots are fork tender.

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Make sure to write thawing and cooking instructions on the bag. Also, I make enough for Jordan to take back to work with him. The instructions ensure he knows how to make it without calling or texting me a billion time. I also like to double bag any freezer meal,  just in case there is a rip or tear in the bag I can’t see right away.

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Second is, chicken tortilla soup, it is really inexpensive to double and freeze for a later date.  I really enjoy it for lunch, with all the mix-ins it’s very filling. Also, since it is not a cream based soup its a healthy lunch choice. Just be careful how many tortilla chips you use….half a bag is a bit too much…..speaking from experience. 

Chicken Tortilla Soup

1 rotisserie or leftover chicken

½ White onion, chopped

1  32 oz box of Organic Low sodium Chicken stock

1 one can of diced tomatoes

1 can of black beans, rinsed

1 can of diced green chilies

½ bag of frozen organic sweet corn

1 packet of taco seasoning

3 cloves of garlic , minced or pressed

1 bunch of  fresh cilantro

2 ripe avocados, sliced

  1. Shred chicken, avoid using the skin. Place in a heavy bottomed pot, add chopped onions, seasoning pack and garlic. Cook on medium heat, until onions and garlic are caramelized.
  2. Add half  the box of chicken stock, all three cans of tomatoes, black beans and green chilies.
  3. Add additional chicken stock if more juice is desired.
  4. Add half the bag of frozen corn. Bring soup to a boil for 3-5 minutes stirring occasionally.
  5. Serve hot with sour cream, cheese, chopped cilantro, slices of avocados and tortilla chips.

What are your favorite make ahead meals?

Happy Cooking Friends!

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