6 Time-Saving Freezer Meals Your Family Will Devour

by | Jul. 15, 2017

Mormon Life

Freezer Meals from Our Best Bites

Breakfast—Sausage and Egg Breakfast Burritos 

Sausage and Egg Breakfast Burritos Freezer Meal

3 tablespoons butter
12 eggs
1/4 cup water
pepper or Tabasco sauce
1 lb. lean turkey breakfast sausage
1 onion, diced
1 bell pepper (any color), seeded and diced
12 (8″) 100% whole wheat tortillas (I used Tia Rosa soft taco tortillas)
6-8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese

In large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. While butter is melting, whisk together eggs, water, salt, and pepper or Tabasco sauce. When butter is melted, tilt skillet to coat pan. Add eggs and allow them to cook until bubbly, then gently scrape bottom of pan, allowing more of liquid egg mixture to come in contact with the pan. Repeat until eggs are completely scrambled. Transfer eggs to a bowl and return pan to hot stove. Add sausage and cook, crumbling sausage as it cooks, until it’s about halfway cooked. Add onions and peppers and cook until vegetables are tender and sausage is completely cooked. Remove pan from heat. Place 1/3 cup scrambled eggs, 1/4 cup of sausage/pepper mixture, and 2 tablespoons of shredded cheese into each tortilla. Roll mixture tightly into tortillas, folding in ends as you roll, then roll tightly in aluminum foil. Place wrapped burritos into large Ziploc bag and freeze. When ready to serve, remove burrito from bag, unwrap from foil, and place on microwave-safe plate. Place plate in microwave and cook at 30% power for 90 seconds to defrost burrito. Then cook for another 60 seconds on full power or until hot. Serve immediately with salsa. Makes 12 burritos.

Lunch—Crispy Coconut Chicken Fingers

Crispy coconut Chicken Fingers

12 chicken tenders (ya know, more or less . . . )
1-2 eggs (start with one and crack another if it runs out)
1/2 cup flour
1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon table salt
3/4 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (you can leave this out if you want to skip the spice for the kiddos)

Preheat oven to 450˚ F. Give coconut a rough chop so it’s about same size as panko pieces. Combine with Panko and spices in shallow dish. Mix well to distribute all of spices. Place flour in another shallow dish, and egg in another. Give egg a quick beating. Working with one chicken tender at a time, dredge in flour and then dip in egg, then finally coat in coconut Panko mixture. Press in with fingers to make sure it is well coated. Place chicken tenders on foil-lined baking sheet (for easy clean up!) that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. I give mine a teeny drizzle of olive oil on top to help them crisp nicely, but it’s optional. Bake in 450˚ F oven for about 20 minutes or until juices run clear. Try not to overcook because chicken tenders go from perfect to overcooked really fast! If your tenders are on the small side, they could even be done in about 15 minutes so keep an eye on them. If they’re big they can take more like 25. The coconut will be nice and golden and the panko crisp, but light in color still.

Freezer Instructions: Prepare chicken fingers through coating them in panko/coconut mixture. Place in single layer on lined baking sheet and freeze for several hours. Remove from freezer and transfer to gallon-sized Ziploc bag or freezer safe container. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 450˚ F. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until juices run clear.

Dinner—Baked Cheesy Chicken Penne

Baked Cheesy Chicken Penne

(Slightly adapted from this recipe by Martha Stewart)

6 tablespoons butter, plus more for baking dishes
kosher salt and black pepper
1 lb. penne rigate
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 8 oz. each), halved horizontally
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour
6 garlic cloves, finely minced
6 cups whole milk
10 oz. white or cremini mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 cup sliced oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained
1 1/2 cups shredded provolone* (6 oz.) you could also make that 1/2 mozzarella
1 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan (about 6 oz.)

Preheat oven to 400˚ F. Butter two shallow 2-quart baking dishes (If freezing, use disposable foil pan). In large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta 3 minutes short of al dente; drain pasta and set aside. While pasta is boiling, heat oil over medium-high heat in large skillet. Season chicken with salt and pepper; cook until opaque throughout, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Halve each piece lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. While chicken pan is still hot, toss mushrooms in and saute until golden brown (3-4 minutes). Use extra olive oil if needed. In 5-quart Dutch oven or heavy pot (I just use the pot I cooked my pasta in), melt butter over medium. Add flour and garlic; cook, whisking, 1 minute. While whisking constantly, gradually add milk; bring to simmer. Keep whisking frequently as sauce thickens, about 1 minute more. Add mushrooms and tomatoes; cook 1 minute. Take pan off heat and gradually stir in provolone and 1/2 cup Parmesan. Add chicken and pasta to pot; season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide pasta mixture between baking dishes. If freezing, place remaining parmesan cheese in zip-top baggie. If cooking, sprinkle on top. Bake, uncovered, until top is golden and bubbling, about 25 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Freezer instructions:
To freeze, prepare through step 4 and then let pasta cool. Cover pan well with plastic wrap. Place extra cheese in baggie (for topping) on top and then cover entire pan well with foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. To bake, preheat oven to 400˚ F. Remove foil and plastic from pan and set cheese baggie aside. Place foil back on pan and bake for about 1 1/2 hours. Remove foil, stir pasta, and top with cheese. Return pan to oven and bake for additional 15 minutes or until mixture is hot and bubbly throughout.

To see more recipes, check out Our Best Bites: 150 Family-Friendly Recipes 

Meet Sara and Kate, two Mormon girls who love to cook. As busy moms, their philosophy is that cooking really good food for your family doesn't have to be complicated. In fact, cooking at home can be a delicious, fun, and easy way to care for your family and friends. Our Best Bites bring together more than 150 recipes for delicious, easy meals and snacks that are fun to make, include healthy, fresh ingredients, and are more popular with families. The authors share their tips and tricks (mixed with an abundant sense of humor), and step-by-step, full-color photographs for each recipe. Available at Deseret Book Stores and deseretbook.com.

Lead images from sixsistersstuff.com and ourbestbites.com
Comments and feedback can be sent to feedback@ldsliving.com