Ugh, I haven’t been doing my freezer meals lately and boy oh boy am I regretting it! Although I still managed to make quite a delicious and simple meal last night! (It’s like enchiladas without getting your hands dirty.) I made due with ingredients I had on hand and it was DELICIOUS! There are lots of variations you could make with this recipe as well. While we had chicken, you could make it with beef or pork as well. You could add black beans, cream cheese, just use your imagination or let your pantry do the talking (that’s whay I did)!
Cheesy Chicken Mexican “Lasagna”
1 Tbsp Jalapeno Pepper Grapeseed Oil
1 lb chicken-I used boneless skinless thighs (or beef or pork)
1/2 onion diced-I used red since that’s what we had
2 cups shredded cheese
1 bottle Tia Rosa’s enchilada sauce
6- 8″ corn tortillas (or 12- 6″ tortillas)
Preheat oven to 350 °. Meanwhile heat Grapeseed oil in 10″ skillet and add chicken. While chicken is cooking, dice onion. Pour 1/4 bottle of enchilada sauce in 9×13 pan or deep baking dish. Once chicken is cooked, cube or shred using two forks to pull meat apart. In baking dish, layer 2- 8″ (or 4- 6″ tortillas), 1/2 of the chicken and onion and 1/3 of the cheese. Repeat with 1/4 of enchilada sauce, tortillas ect. Top with 2 (or 4) tortillas and the last of the enchilada sauce and cheese. Bake for 25-30 minutes. I like my cheese browned on top so I broiled the last 2 minutes. Enjoy!
If you are going to add black beans, combine it with your meat and layer meat mixture accordingly. If you are going to add cream cheese, make sure it is softened and combine 1 1/3 cup of shreded cheese with it. Spread on the two middle layers.
If you just flashed back to 1990 and have an annoying jingle stuck in your head, welcome to my club! Sorry to enlist you. I can’t get that song out of my head and need some company in crazy land! Bwahaha! Okay, back to the good stuff…
The following before and after picture shows about 7.5 lbs of chicken turned into 5 Freezer Meals which fed this family of 3 (technically 4 but the two kiddos eat about the equivalent of one adult) about 9 meals! So it’s safe to say each meal (main course) cost around $6-7. That’s less than $3 person! Beat that “fast food”! And really the 45 minutes it took me to prepare is well worth the 3 hours it saved me during the busy week. That’s assuming I spend about 20 minutes average preparing (cutting, seasoning, and cleaning up). I LOVE not having to clean up after prepping more than once a month!!! Bleh! 😛
Here’s what I made:
Chicken and Salsa Soup
Jerk Chicken Satay
Chipotle Lime Chicken
Southwest Chicken Soup
Zesty Lime Fajitas
Here’s what you need:
7.5 lbs chicken (I used breast tenders so half the cutting was done already!)
1 Red pepper
1 Green Pepper
1 Yellow Pepper
3 medium yellow onions
1 c rice
15 oz can black beans
3 14.5 oz cans dized tomatoes
2 4oz cans diced green chiles
3 cups frozen corn
Wildtree ingredients(already in my pantry):
Fajita Seasoning Blend
Fiesta Salsa Mix
Chipotle Lime Rub
Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
Roasted Garlic Grapeseed Oil
Natural Grapeseed Oil
The end result:
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Payday, check! Costco, check! Time to make some freezer meals! I didn’t have the motivation to tackle all the meat at once so I decided to break it down in to one meat per night until I was finished. Hey, 3 nights with a little extra time spent on dinner is worth it to know dinner is planned and ready for the next two weeks plus! Tonight we tackle the beef.
So how do those three ziploc bags amount to 5 meals you ask!? Well, I’ll tell you what, that meatloaf isn’t going down in one sitting! And believe it or not, that loner pound with the skillet meal mix, once you add the mix and rice to the meal, it’ll feed this family two times, especially if you want to add some extra goodness like corn or black beans or maybe roll it up into a tortilla. Oh man and those burgers, my new FAVE!!! That’s a LOTTA burger. Once you beef it up (no pun intended) those “quarter pounders” are more like 1/3 or more.
So this is how freezer meals work, you take the ingredients, mash up in a bag and freeze them until you’re ready to use! Obviously there’s still some cooking and maybe even a few more ingredients required to complete the meal. For instance, the above recipes will require spaghetti sauce, Wildtree’s Mexican Skillet Meal, milk, rice, and hamburger buns (optional). These are often staples you keep in your pantry anyway. For the complete recipes with cooking instructions contact firstname.lastname@example.org!