Sunday, September 30, 2012

Freezer Cooking

Before my sister abandoned me moved to Kansas City she and I would get together and do freezer cooking. It was fun to do it together. Now I am all on my own. But, me and two other girls do meet up once a month to do a freezer meal exchange. 

How it works is each of us pick 2 recipes and we make 3 meals from each recipe. So, we all walk away with 6 freezer meals. It is a big time and money saver. 

Last month one of my freezer meals was a complete disaster. So, in order to avoid getting kicked out of the group I decided to stick with some tried and true recipes this month. I went with Baked Ziti and Tater Tot Casserole. Crowd pleasers for sure.

I thought I would share the recipes for your own freezer cooking pleasure.

First up. Baked Ziti. Here is what your counter will look like if you are making 3 batches! But, I will give the recipe to just make one and then you can double or triple it! Also, this makes a good sized pan. So, if you have a smaller family you could easily make one recipe and divide it into two smaller pans and have two zitis!
1 pound ground beef, browned and drained (preferably done the night before by your wonderful hubby... at least that is the route I chose to go this time around, thanks Babe!)
1 pound ziti, cooked to al dente
2 cans spaghetti sauce (24 oz)
8 slices provolone cheese
1 1/2 C. mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 C. sour cream
some Italian seasoning (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (skip if you are going to be freezing)
2. Combine spaghetti sauce, ground beef, and Italian Seasoning in a large mixing bowl
3. In a 9x13 pan layer 1/2 of your cooked ziti noodles, next layer provolone cheese, next layer put your sour cream, then add a layer of 1/2 of your sauce, followed by the rest of your ziti noodles, then layer your mozarella cheese, followed by topping with remaining sauce.
4. If cooking immediately bake for 30 minutes until cheese is melted.
5. If freezing, cover with foil and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to make thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Bake as directed above.

Next up is Tater Tot Casserole. Super easy and freezes well too. Here was what I started with:
 Ingredients (for one pan)
1 1/2 lb. tater tots
1 lb. ground beef, browned and drained,
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/4 C. milk
cheddar cheese to top

1. Combine ground beef, soup, and milk
2. Spread ground beef mixture on the bottom of a 9x13 pan
3. Layer the tater tots... at this point it is good to have a handy little helper :)

4. At this point you can begin baking at 350 degrees, covered with foil for 30 minutes, then uncover, top with cheese and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
5. If freezing cover with foil and freeze cheese separately.Then when ready to cook thaw completely and then follow instructions above.
Happy Freezer Cooking!


  1. I miss freezer cooking too! Simon is a bad helper, looks like your helper is great tot placer!

    1. You can borrow her anytime your tots need placed!

  2. Tater tot casserole? Michelle Duggar would be so proud of you!! Love that ziti recipe too... I will be making that sometime. Sour cream is the secret ingredient in amazing pasta dishes!