Freezing Meals Ahead of Time

2 PAGES
1 | 2
previous topic · next topic
Shrinking...

Joined: Aug 09
Posts: 31

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 10:38
I'm just wondering what types of meals people like to make ahead of time and freeze for the lunches during the week. I have a VERY full schedule with 4 kids, a husband, church life, and fulltime job. I find myself eating sandwiches or Lean Cuisines/Healthy Choices for lunch because we NEVER have leftovers at my house lol.

I need some good high protein/low calorie meals I can make ahead of time and freeze (that will taste good too!). Any suggestions are appreciated!!!
**Shrinking Sonya**

"Unless You Puke, Faint or Die, Keep Going!" -Jillian Michaels

"Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified." -1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (ESV)
Adelinemf

Joined: Feb 10
Posts: 120

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 11:25
I don't make meals per se, or freeze for that matter. But what I will do is make brown rice and pasta for the bf, since I am not really eating any carbs right now, enough for a couple of meals during the week, roast a couple of pounds of split chicken breasts (very versatile) and bake turkey meatloaves in muffin tins. I also chop broccoli and zucchini and store in the fridge and then steam it when needed. I find that fish is pretty easy to cook that night so I don't do this ahead. Turkey Chili is good to make ahead, too.

As for my lunches, I eat a HUGE salad everyday. It's a good source of fiber and nutrients. So I will take about 3-4 ounces of that roasted chicken breast with me.

Hope this helps!
Best,

Adeline

Strong is the new skinny!

One should eat to live, not live to eat. ~Cicero, Rhetoricorum LV
Hoser

Joined: Jul 10
Posts: 1,997

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 12:17
I make all sorts of single-dish meals ahead of time and then eat them for lunch all week. Stews and soups are great for this. I also like all sorts of stir frys. Sometimes I make frittatas, though I usually only do two days of those at a time.

I don't freeze them, though. I just toss them in the refrigerator in single-serving containers.
Marlboro Man

Joined: Sep 10
Posts: 418

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 12:23
my big one is ham and beans. if you get a lean ham you'll have a high protein, low fat, high fiber meal that keeps well and tastes good out of the microwave. chili is another one in the same boat if you use a lean beef or turkey and the great thing about chili is it only gets better with age.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.”
—Aristotle
"It's not a diet, it's not exercise, it's a lifestyle."
-Unknown
mwessinger

Joined: Aug 10
Posts: 184

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 12:46
If you want leftovers for lunches, you have to PLAN for it. The crowd is not as large at my house-just three of us-but the planning can scale for whatever your normal crowd is.

In my case, I use extra time on weekends to make my lunches. However, I accomplish not only lunches, but take care of a few dinners for the week at the same time. If I plan to have crock-pot pork roast, during the week, I cook a larger one than we need and portion out the extra into Ziploc divided containers. I cook a big pot of brown rice, and some other green veggie like broccoli, green beans, or lima beans, and I have my sides. I can usually get two dinners plus about 4 lunches from a 3-4 lb pork loin.

If I have broiled salmon over the weekend, I buy a larger piece than I know we will need for dinner and make it into a lunch. Sometimes I will do marinated baked chicken breasts on Sunday afternoon. Same as the pork loin--I cook 8 pieces instead of 2 so I can pack away some lunches.

I don't throw out many leftovers at my house. If we finish a meal and there is a single serving of whatever we had for dinner left over, I put it into a lunch container and start "building" a lunch. As for suggestions, the possibilities are endless. Use what you have leftover, or plan to have leftover. I really like the divided Ziploc containers for my lunches.

One final tip-let it thaw completely before lunch time. I pull my lunch out of the work fridge about 10:00 AM every day and place it in the overhead storage bin in my office. By lunch time, it is usually completely thawed and only takes a couple minutes in the microwave. I find that heating up from thawed doesn't "rubberize" food the way heating it from frozen does.
Shrinking...

Joined: Aug 09
Posts: 31

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 12:57
Wow thanks guys for the tips! I do love making soup or chili and bringing leftovers. We tend to stay away from those types of foods during warm weather, though. I think it would be a good goal to bake some chicken breasts ahead of time. I also wish I could make a huge salad and break it up for lunches, but salad seems to go bad QUICKLY in my experience. Hmm...
**Shrinking Sonya**

"Unless You Puke, Faint or Die, Keep Going!" -Jillian Michaels

"Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified." -1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (ESV)
fredmugs

Joined: Jan 11
Posts: 381

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 13:05
When I make chicken breasts I broil an entire broiler pan full and then (right now actually) I add in some onions, green peppers, and some kind of marinade like carribean jerk.

For lunch today I had pork tenderoil and some asparagus.

Sometimes I get a very large can of tuna from Sam's Club and mix in some flavored mustard instead of mayo and then eat it with lettuce. You can add other things like onion to it to break up the tuna taste.

Pain is a by-product of a good time.
Adelinemf

Joined: Feb 10
Posts: 120

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 13:06
Sonya - I make my lunch salad the night before while I am making our dinner salads, because I agree with you, you just can't cut up a bunch of lettuce and expect it to stay. I do chop up the veggies though like: green peppers, radishes, tomatoes, cucumbers, etc. Those seem to stay ok.

Oh yeah, and my bf says I have mastered the split chichken breasts. Season with whatever you want - salt pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, rosemary, paprika, lemon - whatever flavor you want! Roast them at 300-325 for about 50-60 minutes till they are 155 Degrees. Remove and let cool and debone. Perfectly juicy!
Best,

Adeline

Strong is the new skinny!

One should eat to live, not live to eat. ~Cicero, Rhetoricorum LV
lisakp71

Joined: Jun 10
Posts: 527

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 13:11
Wow, freezing sounds like waaay more effort than I'm willing to put in! Razz

Honestly, I just make sure my work fridge & kitchen cabinet are stocked with plenty of basics (right now: bagel thins and a couple pita halves, sliced turkey, a couple of string cheeses and a bag of deeelicious turkey pepperonis, laughing cows, a couple of yogurts/SF jello pudding thingies (creme brulee rice pudding, YUM), fruits (strawberries & a couple oranges), Cherry Polaner All-Fruit with Fiber, WW cream cheese, my beloved Greek yogurt plus the walnuts and honey I need for it, and FF half-and-half for coffee). Sounds like a lot, but it's really only a corner of our mini-fridge plus part of one cabinet shelf.

Then every now & then, at most 1-2x a week, I'll bring leftovers. Ocassionally I go hog-wild and grab a little bag of baked Cheetos or pretzels from my kids' lunchbox stash or get a box of fiber bars for my desk drawer... living large, I know!

But with all that, I'm ready for every single thing I consume at work: coffee, breakfast, lunch and snacks. Done!
Shrinking...

Joined: Aug 09
Posts: 31

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 13:31
That's how I am now too, Lisa. I have a desk drawer devoted to snacks and have commandeered a drawer in our fridge at work too. I keep things like fruit, almonds, coffee, creamer, Splenda, deli turkey & roast beef, fat free cheese, Greek yogurt, etc.
**Shrinking Sonya**

"Unless You Puke, Faint or Die, Keep Going!" -Jillian Michaels

"Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified." -1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (ESV)
lisakp71

Joined: Jun 10
Posts: 527

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 15:13
Fridgelady high five! *smack*

Very Happy

mikecontos

Joined: Feb 11
Posts: 156

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 17:10
I do all of my breakfasts ahead in sandwich form. Denver omellete sandwich, ham cheese omelette, turkey bacon and beaters sandwiches etc. I use egg beaters and get a very satisfying breakfast for around 300 calories or less. I also do extra every time I cook something healthy and either refrigerate or freeze for the week.(Stir fries, chicken breasts etc. Its great for me because I LOVE to cook. I just download my favorite podcasts or ipod tunes and do late night cook a thons. Very relaxing and feels great mentally to be taking the contriol of what I put into the old bod!

And yes, I do keep healthier snacks around too. I LOOOOOVE me the fiber one chewy bars!
Do it now...tommorrow never comes!
Marlboro Man

Joined: Sep 10
Posts: 418

      quote  
Posted: 26 Apr 2011, 19:36
i just thought of a better "summertime" dish opposed to soups... chicken salad to be eaten with a pita, english muffin, wrap, lettuce, fruit or my favorite on a slice of good bread topped with sliced apple, the salad and swiss cheese which is even better if you can broil it just enough to melt the cheese. here's the recipe i came up with and really enjoy.

2 lb chicken breast shredded
1 c. Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. honey
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1/3 c. celery, chopped
2 oz smoked almonds or roasted walnuts, chopped
1/3 c. grapes, halved
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.”
—Aristotle
"It's not a diet, it's not exercise, it's a lifestyle."
-Unknown
lisakp71

Joined: Jun 10
Posts: 527

      quote  
Posted: 27 Apr 2011, 14:44
@mikecontos - those chewy bars are AWESOME! If you like Fiber One, you totally need to try the Fiber Plus Antioxidants ones. There is a variety that tastes EXACTLY like Samoas Girl Scout cookies, which for me is pure heaven. Smile

radiochick

Joined: Jan 11
Posts: 303

      quote  
Posted: 27 Apr 2011, 15:16
Lisa we call the Fiber One bars Weapons of A$$ Destruction at our house!! If you want a laugh just Google fiber one fart. Lol. I'm laughing just thinking about it.

In fact perhaps the darting gal in my yoga class made the mistake of eating one before class?!

Anyway... sorry I swear I think about more than just gas!!

I'll try the fiber plus bar for sure!
triaby

Joined: Feb 11
Posts: 320

      quote  
Posted: 27 Apr 2011, 16:07
Once a month I make about 30 dinners for the freezer - pasta & mince, spaghetti bolagnaise, liver with mashed butternut and cauliflower, meatballs and spagetti - it just makes a nice break twice a week to take out of the freezer in the morning and come home and dinner is done, then I can get out early for my swim. Since doing calorie counting I calculate everything going in and the outcome and weigh out and work out calories per meal. Although this will take me a whole Sunday morning, it is worth the time saved during the week. Lunches I try and plan the night before, so it is more thought through and not just grab and go.


Tracy

I actually have a body like Cindy Crawford, I just keep it well covered to protect it!

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.

♥ I am the captain of my soul ♥


Take care of your body. It's the only place you have to live.
ebivr

Joined: Jun 08
Posts: 424

      quote  
Posted: 28 Apr 2011, 05:41
I don't make meals per se. I tend to freeze a bunch of different cooked veggies, a bunch of different cooked meats & fish, then mix & match on the day.

"Do what thou wilt shall be the the Law, Love is the whole of the law, Love before will, The meaning of life is to Love"
"Never apologise for who you are"
"Leave as little negative impact on the world as possible"
"Last night fear knocked on my door, faith answered and no one was there"
Even if it's slow it's going to Go!

Starting weight: 318 lbs!! 2nd of June 2008, (Calorie Counting!).

June 08 Month 1: 298 lb (20 lb. lost). July 08 Month 2: 291 lb (7 lb. lost). August 08 Month 3: 279 lb (12 lb. lost). September 08 Month 4: 268 lb (11 lb. lost). October 08 Month 5: 257 lb (11 lb. lost). November 08 Month 6: 248 lb (9 lb. lost). December 08 Month 7: 235 lb (13 lb. lost).

January 2009 Month 8: 229 lb (6 lb. lost). February 09 Month 9: 223 lb (6 lb. lost). March 09 Month 10: 211 lb (12 lb. lost). April 09 Month 11: 208 lb (3 lb. lost). May 09 Month 12: 210 lb (+2 lb. gained). June 09 Month 13: 188 lb (22 lb. lost). July 09 Month 14: 181 lb (7 lb. lost). August 09 Month 15: 179 lb (2 lb. lost).

Starting weight: 305 lbs!! 19th of November 2013, (Atkins!).

November 2012 Month 1: 297.2 lb (7.8 lb. lost). December 2012 Month 2: 292 lb (5.2 lb. lost). January 2013 Month 3: 276.8 lb (15.2 lb. lost). February 2013 Month 4: 262.6 lb (14.2 lb. lost). March 2013 Month 5: 276.6 lb (+14 lb. gained). April 2013 Month 6: 253.4 lb (23.2 lb. lost). May 2013 Month 7: lb ( lb. ).
lenakh

Joined: Apr 11
Posts: 184

      quote  
Posted: 29 Apr 2011, 23:39
If you live in USA - go to Trader Joe's. They have plenty of frozen lunch/dinner foods that satisfy almost any diet! I always keep some of their pre-cooked chicken patties, frozen veggies, berries and bread (yeah, also frozen). Then you just throw bread in toaster (I use multigrain sandwich thins from Orowheat - it's round like a burger bun and only 100 calories), chicken patty into microwave, grab some lettuce leaf or a slice of tomato - and you're set! I also often just grab a salad from their deli aisle on my way to work - and I keep a large plastic container at work to make mixing it sauce easier!
~Lena

The first person who should be in love with you is yourself, no matter how imperfect.
Laurael

Joined: Apr 11
Posts: 83

      quote  
Posted: 30 Apr 2011, 07:54
I don't know about you, but I will not last the day on a salad. I love salad, I can eat it every day, but I need some meat with it. I like to have some things cooked and frozen and ready to go in or with a salad. Cook an extra chicken breast or two, dice up the meat and have it individually portioned and in the freezer ready to grab. Ground turkey, seasoned with taco spices is another fave. When cooking a family dinner, plan on extra portions for yourself, then don't put them on the table, go ahead and put them in the freezer. I don't know what your kids are like, but mine don't get anything out of the freezer except treats, like ice cream. They would not bother to take something out that doesn't look ready to eat. I actually like some of the Morningstar vegetarian products - the Prime Grillers (hamburgers) and the breakfast patties (sausage) are good to have occasionally. I like the breakfast strips (bacon or facon), too, and have made a sandwich with the breakfast strips, raw spinach and tomatoes on one piece of whole-wheat bread. I keep boiled eggs (also great on a salad) and Greek yogurt in the fridge for mid-morning and afternoon snacks. I typically use spinach or a mix of spinach and lettuce for my salads and sandwiches, even if I go to Subway. IME, spinach stays fresher longer than lettuce, too. One of my fave salads is spinach, boiled egg, tomato and facon crumbles with a honey-mustard dressing.

I buy several pkgs of chicken breasts when they are on sale, then grill and freeze. My hubby likes to use a smoker, so he sometimes fills the smoker with chicken, a pork roast or chops, and smoked a beef chuck roast last time. Portion and freeze, then you're good to go.
candiland85

Joined: Oct 10
Posts: 12

      quote  
Posted: 23 May 2011, 09:47
I have a nuwave oven and it works perfectly for me. When I get home I put some fish, or chicken breast in it frozen or thawed, and add my own seasoning and it takes no more that 15 minutes and after I work out, my meal is there in the oven ready to be eaten. I love the nuwave oven it allows me to eat fresh cooked food daily and quickly and it comes out tasting great every time.
Work hard, Never quit!!!



Forum Search
Advanced forum search


Latest Posts

High Protein Lower-Fat Options (Using whole, real foods)
Posted recipe in LuC2 Cookbook: CINNAMON GRANOLA CLUSTERS (as promised). Don't skip the virgin coconut oil (you simply can't beat the aromatic enhancement to the granola) or oat flour (it's ...
by LuC2 on 18 Apr 14 07:45 PM
It's expensive season at my local market
Yum, steak is a rarity for me as well. Am planting some chard, not something that is available to buy, have never even seen it in a farmers market here.
by wholefoodnut on 17 Apr 14 04:58 AM
CSA challenge: Carrots, Kale, Fennel, Spring Onion
sounds delicious and I will definitely try it, as much as I'm a veggie nut , Kale is not one of my favourites and i've tried so many recipes knowing how good it is for me, I tolerate it rather ...
by mummydee on 12 Apr 14 03:50 AM
serving size for dry ingredients
Check the food label, it should tell you. Rice tends to have higher calories. Usually it's 1/4 cup dry and about 150-200 calories
by NCNOLE on 10 Apr 14 04:49 PM
Need ideas for more PROTEIN please!
Also protein powder. I use it every day
by dylansmom0110 on 07 Apr 14 11:24 AM