Last-Minute Meals?

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Changes are coming.  I can feel it in the air.


Yay, Fall!  I have fallen in love with Fall.  :)  This is my first time experiencing a lovely, colorful, mild Fall (I’ve lived in Miami and Pittsburgh – two extremes!). 


This afternoon, after coaching GOTR, I headed over to the clinic.  But first – I stopped off for fresh-pressed juice.  I had “the everything,” which literally was everything… kale, spinach, carrots, ginger, garlic, beets, cabbage, and apple.


I also ate about 1/2 of this bar.  I love Green and Black’s.  I think the espresso flavor is the best (and then ginger).  But cherries was good, too!


And we didn’t get back from work until 8:45 PM.  I dug through the freezer and fridge, but I swear we didn’t own one 15-minutes-or-less, easy-to-prepare dinner. 


So, I opted for a healthy takeout alternative.  :)  Chinese to the rescue.


No, thank YOU, Chinese food.


We ordered the steamed vegetables in a light brown sauce + a side of brown rice.  Before I left the house to pick up the $8 entree (score!), I sliced some tofu and plopped it on the George Foreman.  All together, it made an awesome, easy meal.


I think I need to think ahead for the week and make a big casserole or something on Sunday night.  I can freeze leftovers and have them in a pinch.  Does anyone else do this?  Any good recipes out there?



  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing November 16, 2010, 9:37 pm

    Casseroles freeze so well! I also like to make things like Jenna’s Lentil loaf or soup or chili that can chill in the fridge for a few days worth of meals.

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin November 16, 2010, 9:45 pm

    I sometimes make a big pot of black beans at the beginning of the week so its the perfect protein to add on top of veggies, rice, pasta, etc. all week. I followed an awesome recipe for Simmered Beans from NY Times and they turned out SOOOO good. Seriously, life changing.

  • Brittany (a healthy slice of life) November 16, 2010, 9:45 pm

    I love leftovers for quick meals! Or pasta… There is always pasta 🙂

  • alli November 16, 2010, 9:55 pm

    yes! bean soup, it freezes well 🙂

    Two cans of three different kinds of beans, I use black beans, pinto beans with jalepenos, and kidney beans.
    One can RoTel tomatoes with green chilis.
    1/2 small bag frozen corn, defrost before if cooking fast.
    Put all this in a pot on low with a few dashes of chili powder. Add jalepenos if desired.
    Serve with various toppings: sour cream, shredded cheddar, tortilla chips, avocado chunks, black olives, etc.

    sometimes i make up french toast or waffles then freeze those
    to have on hand. i just pop em in the toaster oven for a quick breakfast or “breakfast for dinner” 🙂

  • Amanda @ Hungry Vegan Traveler November 16, 2010, 10:00 pm

    Do you have a crock pot?

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 7:54 am

      yes! i don’t really know how to use it for vegetarian food, though.

      • lindsay November 17, 2010, 9:26 am

        You can make anything in a crock pot! Great for cooking down veggies or potatoes on low all day – stews, soups, chilis, etc.

      • Rachel November 17, 2010, 9:33 am

        Try “Fresh From the Vegetarian Slow Cooker” by Robin Robertson. I’ve only made a few of the recipes, but it has a lot useful advice about how to use the appliance for vegetarian (and vegan) recipes.

        I have not used canned beans in ages because it is so easy to cook dry beans in the crockpot. I make a whole pound and then freeze them in portions. Cost-effective, convenient, and not too much trouble.

  • Clare @ Fitting It All In November 16, 2010, 10:05 pm

    I made a big batch of Sweet potato and Lentil stew and froze individual portions. Perfect for last minute!

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) November 16, 2010, 10:11 pm

    I did this for our busy season and it has worked out fabulously. I had leftover Barley Root Veggie stew tonight and Hunni had Mac & Cheese. WE have so much in our freezer we can barely shut it.

  • chelsey @ clean eating chelsey November 16, 2010, 10:12 pm

    I definitely meal plan ahead of time – I always make enough for leftovers so I can pack lunches or for nights when I get home late (like tonight – parent teacher conferences) so the Husband doesn’t starve (or he decides to go out for pizza like tonight ha!). Soups are my big thing – love them!

  • Anna November 16, 2010, 10:13 pm

    I pretty much only cook dinner in bulk these days- it’s so handy to fill the freezer with frozen chili, stew, or soup and just thaw it out for dinners throughout the week. Especially when you’re a busy student just cooking for one like me. Chili and red lentil stew are my favorite make-ahead and freeze dishes. They taste so much better with a little age!

  • Nicole @ yuppie yogini November 16, 2010, 10:13 pm

    That is so what I wanted for dinner.

    Soups/stews freeze well so I’ve read. You could make something in the crockpot and freeze it in individual serving containers.

  • Lacey @ Lake Life November 16, 2010, 10:14 pm

    I always make up meals on Sunday, as well as lunches and snacks for the week. It’s so nice to not have to worry about making dinner and doing tons of dishes on weeknights, especially now that it gets dark @ 5pm!

  • Megan November 16, 2010, 10:14 pm

    I always cook in bulk, and freeze individual portions in single-serve Pyrex containers from Walmart. I make a lot of bean and vegetable soups, and they always freeze well. I have made this before and it’s good too:

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 7:55 am

      I love polenta. That looks good!

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog) November 16, 2010, 10:20 pm

    oooh I cant wait until we get to unpack our boxes and I can use my george foreman again! how i have missed him so!

    We often make a big lasagne or curry and that keeps us going for quite a few days 🙂

  • Megan (Running Foodie) November 16, 2010, 10:21 pm

    I like to make freezer lasagna – I line a casserole with tin foil and assemble a lasagna the usual way. Then I stick the casserole dish in the freezer. Once the lasagna is frozen, I take the casserole dish out and wrap it COMPLETELY in foil (and write in Sharpie when I made it). This way I have a lasagna for whenever I need it, but I don’t have to leave my casserole dish in the freezer. I usually just pull it out of the freezer in the AM on the day I want to use it, unwrap the foil, and plop it back into the dish to defrost, then just cook is as usual when I get home that night.

    • Carly November 17, 2010, 9:31 am

      That is so smart!!

  • the veg meg November 16, 2010, 10:23 pm

    Soup. Make two different kinds on a weekend and freeze portions for the week. yum!

  • kalin November 16, 2010, 10:26 pm

    whenever i make things like brown rice or quinoa i make extra so that there’s some on hand for easy dinners.
    we also always have the pacific foods tomato soup for an extra lazy meal (they sell it at Costco and it’s so good!)

  • Katie (Sweet Tater) November 16, 2010, 10:27 pm

    i’m with meg. soup! lentil soup is my favorite. stew just made an amazing pumpkin apple soup. i prefer soup to casseroles for a week of eats because it’s versatile. you can mix in different grains, serve it over pasta, add extra veggies, tofu or tempeh… or just eat it. endless.

  • Katy (The Singing Runner) November 16, 2010, 10:29 pm

    I sometimes precook meals and put them in the freezer for the week. My favorites are black bean and spinach burgers and veggie chili! So simple and yummy! 🙂

  • Chelsea @ Strawberry Sweat November 16, 2010, 10:30 pm

    I really should start thinking ahead on the weekends and prepping meals, but I always get to the weekend and get too lazy 🙂

  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss November 16, 2010, 10:32 pm

    I love Chinese food!! It’s the best fast food out there, FULL of veggies and good protein!

  • Sarah November 16, 2010, 10:33 pm

    Lasagna! For two of us, I will make a huge batch, split it into individual portion sizes and freeze it like that. It works for lunches or fast dinners.

  • Michelle November 16, 2010, 10:37 pm

    I LOVE Fitnessista Gina’s Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chilli. It’s a slow cooker recipie but I modify and cook on my stovetop. I usually get 4-5 portions out of it. I freeze or eat during the week. Usually I bulk it up with broccoli or spinach when I reheat. SUPER delicious!!

  • Jillian@ Reshape Your Life November 16, 2010, 10:38 pm

    I don’t do that but I should! I was in this predicament this afternoon!

  • Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher November 16, 2010, 10:39 pm

    That what I get at my Chinese place and I love it! Love Chinese food.

  • Charlie November 16, 2010, 10:41 pm

    I’ve just started making bigger recipes to have more leftovers ;). Soups, stews, casseroles… it doesn’t take more time and you have much more :). I made chili last week ( and froze some… my goal is to have many prepared frozen meals to eat at home during final exams (as opposed to eating out 5 days in a row during midterms).

  • Kerry November 16, 2010, 10:43 pm

    Oh yes, I cook a lot on the weekends for lunches and dinners.

    Two recent favorites: Sweet Potato Chili
    and Fall Minestrone

  • Krystina (Basil & Wine) November 16, 2010, 10:43 pm

    I wasn’t so much a fan of the cherry bar. I didn’t like how it broke apart so easily because of the big pieces of cherry.

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 7:57 am

      That’s true. What’s your fav flavor?

  • holly @ couchpotatoathlete November 16, 2010, 10:49 pm

    We’re not big casserole makers — but I always have eggs on hand for veggie omelet dinners, or else we have tortillas, beans and veggies on hand for quick wraps.

    And sometimes I wander down to Chipotle for dinner too 🙂

  • Lana November 16, 2010, 10:49 pm

    I usually make a large quinoa recipe or tofu stir fry for quick go to meals. I’m a busy college student, so having a healthy meal ready in the fridge is a must (Check out: My favorites are the Mexican quinoa and tofu teriakki with pineapple.

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 7:58 am

      That tofu recipe looks goooood.

  • Diana @ frontyardfoodie November 16, 2010, 10:50 pm

    Oh yeah, I try to always have quick stuff on hand. I generally make things like spinach lasagna, veggie enchaladas and potato spinach casserole. Totally worth it! I just give them a freeze and have them whenever I need them.

    Chinese is good too though haha

  • Ellen@FirednFabulous November 16, 2010, 10:55 pm

    I need to remember this post the next time I crave Chinese. Your meal sounds so good and there’s not even one piece of sesame chicken in it! 🙂

  • Deva (Voracious Vorilee) November 16, 2010, 11:01 pm

    We make soups which carry over for about 2 meals and are yummy! One of our favorites is potato cheese soup. I also like making recipes from Smitten Kitchen- her variation of Martha’s macaroni and cheese is amazing. Empanadas are amazing, and you can fill them with all sorts of veggies and beans. Ours froze increcibly well!

  • Wei-Wei November 16, 2010, 11:03 pm

    Lotta Chinese food lately… but it’s delicious 😉

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 7:58 am

      Does Chinese food in China look anything like that?

      • Wei-Wei November 17, 2010, 8:20 am

        Aiyaaa, if you asked me to describe Chinese food there’s so much I can say! There’s so much more to it than dim sum and stir-fries; China is so big, there are different regions and people in different regions eat different food. For example, the carbs Chinese people tend to eat vary – dumplings/noodles in the north, and lots of rice in the south.

        But personally, our family eats a lot of “homestyle” non-fancy food which yes, does involve rice and stir-fries.

  • Erin November 16, 2010, 11:11 pm

    Chili is AWESOME to make ahead and freeze. And it’s easy to make it vegan/vegetarian. You don’t even need to thaw it ahead of time when you want to eat. Just take it frozen out of the freezer, take it out of whatever container you froze it in, and plop it in a pot and put it on low. Stir occasionally.

    I also like to make ravioli and spinach casserole and freeze that but I don’t know how to veganize it since it has a ton of cheese.

  • Shanna, like Banana November 16, 2010, 11:17 pm

    Oh man, I’m totally craving Chinese food…this looks like a dish I order all the time. Hmm, maybe I’ll get the hubby to get take-out later this week 😉

  • Ashley November 16, 2010, 11:30 pm

    I love to make Sunday evenings into a “prep night” for the week. I don’t do it every week, but I try to plan ahead – especially if I know I’m going to be extra busy. I always pre-peel & slice carrots & celery and keep with travel sized containers of almond butter. I’m carnivorous : ) So I also sometimes marinate and grill up chicken on Sunday so I have it ready to go for quick and easy salads, wraps, etc., throughout the week.
    Although I’m a sucker for Chinese take-out, too!

  • Kiran November 17, 2010, 12:04 am

    Fall is in the air. Soups/ stews would be delicious, healthy, fast and easy to freeze.

  • Laura @ DramaticallyFit (New blog!) November 17, 2010, 12:32 am

    HOLY COW, Caitlin! Look at how much money your raffle has raised! You have already more than tripled your goal amount!! That’s so wonderful! Are you going to do more raffles still or stop after this one since you have already surpassed your goal?

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 7:59 am

      I have one more raffle that I hope I can do,but Foodbuzz has to approve all my giveaways now (which is why you rarely see product reviews and giveaways). So I hope Foodbuzz approves + the company comes through because that one is very $$ and will get a lot of raffle tickets!

      • Katie November 17, 2010, 9:05 am

        why does foodbuzz have to approve?

        • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 9:23 am

          It’s part of my ad contract with them – they have exclusivity as far as ‘ads’ go on the blog, and charity raffles, giveaways, etc count.

  • Sue November 17, 2010, 1:40 am

    I LOVE freezer staples! I could literally live off of them for days! Soups and stews freeze very well, so do chilis, curries, tomato sauces, and even bread! Cooked rice and other grains can be kept in the freezer, too! See here:
    Always keeping essential items in my pantry, like canned beans, tomatoes, vacuumed tofu, dry pasta. And I often buy (unseasoned) frozen veggie mixes.
    This way I can prepare most of my meals in under 30 minutes! And remember, leftovers are your best friends. Always make extra portions!

  • maya @ finding balance in tokyo November 17, 2010, 2:10 am

    I’d go with a hearty chili! It’s the perfect season for it, and the eating possibilities are endless, so you’re less likely to get bored with it as the week goes on. You can have it straight up, use it as a wrap or taco filling, top baked potatoes or sweet potatoes, etc. Plus it’s very easy to make large quantities of if you have a decent sized stock pot.

  • Orla November 17, 2010, 4:38 am

    Since going veggie I have been craving chilli and found this amazing recipe on the fab Door Sixteen website. It is amazing and while I suspect it would freeze well, I have made it three times and each time it has not made it to the freezer as I *may* have had it for breakfast.

  • Jacalyn November 17, 2010, 5:27 am

    I made a large pot of pomodoro sauce Sunday night and put it in the fridge. The hubby and I get home at different times so we boil our own noodles when we want them throughout the day.

  • Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) November 17, 2010, 6:00 am

    YES to freezing leftovers! I do that with soups, vegetarian chilis, homemade beans, casseroles, etc. It makes life so easy during the week. 😀

  • Marina November 17, 2010, 6:08 am

    I love having leftovers that I can easily heat up when I don’t have time for cooking.Chili is great, so are stuffed peppers, or maybe veggie lasagna… Hm, maybe I should make something like that too.

  • Lauren November 17, 2010, 6:34 am

    For some reason, I never think to make casseroles. I think the amount of food leftover daunts me and the lack of room in my freezer. I would feel compelled to eat the whole thing before it went bad.

  • Lily @ Lily's Health Pad November 17, 2010, 7:04 am

    Each time I cook, I freeze the leftovers into individual portions to bring as lunches. I have a whole variety of frozen meals to choose from at any given time.

  • Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun November 17, 2010, 7:11 am

    We usually have frozen stews/soups we heat up for easy and quick meals. Or the breakfast for dinner method. Panini sandwiches are also a common occurrence.

    Lastly, tofu with steamed veggies in a bit of brown sauce is my favorite Chinese dish.

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) November 17, 2010, 7:20 am

    I freeze A LOT of stuff here for quick meals. I do bean burgers, chili, soups, pasta bakes and cornbread dressing with tofu in it is so good and makes a great fall/winter meal. I bake mine in muffin pans, so they are easy to freeze and pull out single servings!

    Also, I have discovered, that making a large portion of food a couple of times a week helps you change the meal up a little with leftovers. Like if you make chili, you can have chili with cornbread one night and then later you can do tacos or chili cheese fries. I like making a HUGE thing of fried rice with lots of veggies so I can add things to it throughout the week for leftovers. Fried rice lettuce wraps are so good! Now you made me hungry!

  • Julia @ Brides Up North November 17, 2010, 7:22 am

    That food looks SO good


  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine November 17, 2010, 7:28 am

    I love Green & Black’s too…their plain dark is my fave!!

    What about chili? It freezes well and there are so many variations!

  • Melissa November 17, 2010, 7:29 am

    I have a great chili recipe that is lots of diced tomatoes, beans, and seasonings. It is sooo good, makes a big pot, and super easy to freeze.

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin November 17, 2010, 7:53 am

    There was garlic in that juice? Could you taste it??

    I’m not really a leftovers person, but I recently made a great chili with cornbread, which both freeze well! 😀

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 8:01 am

      Yes and yes. Bletch.

  • Teacherwoman November 17, 2010, 7:56 am

    I rarely make bigger meals on Sundays to freeze, but I think it’s a great idea.

  • Michele @ Healthy Cultivations November 17, 2010, 8:00 am

    Most weekends, I make my own frozen dinners to have for lunch at work or quickly in the evenings. That way, I control the ingredients. It’s a fantastic idea and really doesn’t take all that much time.

  • Tab - Just Weighing In November 17, 2010, 8:04 am

    casseroles are pretty good to freeze and have on hand. 🙂

  • Amy November 17, 2010, 8:08 am

    My favorite go-to quick meal when there’s nothing in the freezer is eggs. Scrambled or fried egg, toast, and a side of steamed or roasted veggies! Yum.

    I’ve never been a fan of Chinese food because normally it’s so heavy, but I like your take on it. I’ll try that next time. (I did not know you could get brown rice instead of white!)

  • tina November 17, 2010, 8:19 am

    hey caitlin! so many good dinner ideas!

    what i usually do is make sunday a cooking day, since i don’t have much time during the week (9-5 job, plus teaching before and after work!). i’ll make a big quinoa salad with whatever veggies i’m feeling that day (sometimes mexican- black beans, corn, tomatoes, cilantro, etc and then add avocado when i want to eat… or asian- with peppers, tomatoes, edamame, etc and then top with avocado and a peanut butter dressing). i pre portion them so i have them ready to go throughout the week!!!!

    veggie burgers are also great to freeze and eat throughout the week (and preportioned!). or i’ll make soups or chilis on sunday and eat throughout the week….

    another idea is if you have a crockpot- to through whatever veggies you’re feeling in the AM in and then they are ready to go at night! 🙂

  • Jennifer November 17, 2010, 8:21 am

    Each week we make a dinner menu and write it down to leave on our fridge. Then, we shop for each of the dinners on the menu and then choose what we want for dinner each day. It has been a total life-saver! My husband and I used to argue about what to have for dinner and now we just look at the menu and choose something! Especially when we have busy weeks, we make it a point to put a big dish on the menu (one of our favorites is vegan lasagna). Other than that, we try to keep our menu to quick and easy meals like tacos (we use fake ground beef, but you can also use tempeh), pasta with veggies and/or beans, fajitas (veggie fajitas are awesome!), veggie burgers (I make my own in big batches and then stick them in the freezer).

    And, here’s a link to several veggie crock pot recipes:

  • Maran November 17, 2010, 8:25 am

    Caitlin- Where did you get the juice? I also live in Charlotte and have my own juicer but sometimes I would just rather go and buy a pre-made one so I’m not stuck with all the dishes. Thanks!!

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 8:29 am

      Berrybrook Farms on East 🙂

  • Valerie November 17, 2010, 8:34 am

    Soups are great for this. And as the colder weather is coming, hearty bean chili would be delightful. Thick and hearty pasta sauces are great too! They save our family when grad school and work cause extra late night!

  • Cindy Robinson November 17, 2010, 8:40 am

    Not related: You are the first thing I go to in the morning before I start my work. You keep me movtivated in all things in life. I love how you’re so real, keep it up.
    Reltated: I really like zucchini lasagna and mexican lasagna, though I’ve never frozen either. Have a great day 🙂

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 9:23 am

      thank you 🙂

  • Charise November 17, 2010, 8:50 am

    I make soups/stews/chilis (veg ideas: black bean and sweet potato chili, white bean and kale soup, curried red lentil-tomato soup) that give us 6 servings. We eat 2 for dinner, 2 for lunch leftovers the next day, and freeze the remaining 2 to be pulled out for emergency meals.

    I also keep a couple packs of locally made vegan burgers to eat on Trader Joe’s naan (always a pack in the freezer) and a couple bags of frozen veggies for easy-peasy meals.

    When I’m planning our meals each week, if there’s a night we have to do things like, say, head to a board meeting from 6-8:30, I specifically plan to have these easy meals beforehand.

  • Sara @ OurDogBuffy November 17, 2010, 8:52 am

    What does “brown sauce” taste like? I’ve wanted to try it but I’m afraid of disliking it.

    • Caitlin November 17, 2010, 9:24 am

      It’s super neutral. There is almost no way you won’t like it. It’s soy sauce based I think.

      • Sara @ OurDogBuffy November 17, 2010, 9:55 am

        Hooray! I will try it the next time we eat Chinese! Thanks, Caitlin!

  • Kennedy @ Running After Balance November 17, 2010, 8:54 am

    Since I live alone and cook for one most nights, I freeze leftovers all the time! My fave so far: bottomless baked penne (it makes a TON, probably 8-10 servings). As a veggie, you’d obviously leave out the sausage 🙂

  • Shrinking mommy of 2 November 17, 2010, 9:08 am

    I am in a freezer group that meets monthly. I have frozen chicken stir fry, ginger beef, italin burgers, enchilada (recipe on my my blog), lots of chicken recipes, soups. etc. Check out and look at once a month cooking for recipe ideas. Let me know if you would like more ideas or recipes.

  • Maren November 17, 2010, 9:26 am

    I do that all the time! Like for instance, last week I made your Santa Fe Casserole and ate that a few times. It was so good!

  • Carolyn @ Lovin' Losing November 17, 2010, 9:28 am

    I am doing the 30 day trial for a site called Plan to Eat where you can import recipes from a bunch of different site and add them to a calendar that you can sync with your Google Calendar. I’m really liking it! It creates a shopping list for you, too.

  • Camille November 17, 2010, 9:30 am

    I was in a cooking zone last week so I made a bunch of meals for this week. Turns out this week has been crazy, so I’m glad I did!

  • Paige (Running Around Normal) November 17, 2010, 9:36 am

    You have ED&BV, right? Well Dreena has an amazing and super eazy polenta, cheese, and mixed bean casserole. It’s so good!

  • Ash November 17, 2010, 9:39 am

    veggie lasagna is a good one, spaghetti sauces, any soup or stew. I always make a list at the beginning of the week and go shopping. It really helps me stay on track. Otherwise I just let the week go by and we end up eating really crappy haha.

  • Whitney @ Whitinspired November 17, 2010, 9:47 am

    Just plan ahead! When I go grocery shopping for the week, I go with meal plans in mind. I always have a few 15 minute meals b/c I don’t have a lot of time
    most nights. Mama pea has an awesome black bean burger recipe that is super quick. I also will
    make a bean quesadilla with a side of veggies. You really can’t get much faster than that!

  • Katie November 17, 2010, 9:52 am

    Ew! Garlic in a smoothie?!

  • Lizz (leadingthegoodlife) November 17, 2010, 10:08 am

    I made a super quick fried rice last night. Using frozen vegetables and pre-cooked rice meant it was done in 10 minutes flat!

  • Sami November 17, 2010, 10:20 am

    i JUST tried that chocolate bar! i saw it for $1.50 and couldnt’ passit up. DELISH!

  • Liz November 17, 2010, 10:30 am

    Soup and chili are perfect make-ahead and freeze meals for that fall weather.

  • Jenny November 17, 2010, 10:45 am

    Few things are better than Chinese Food take out 🙂

  • Lala November 17, 2010, 10:56 am

    Throw cubed tofu in a skillet and brown. Add frozen corn and spinach. Put it in a wrap with a little goat cheese and salsa. Amazing and fast

  • Melissa November 17, 2010, 11:18 am

    If I make lasagna, chili, stew or soup, I usually do freeze leftovers into a few additional portions. I often cook more meat than we will eat in one meal, then I use the leftover for a stir fry or soup the next day. If I roast a whole chicken, I can get several meals out of that! It’s great to have some leftovers on hand. It’s a healthier option for ‘convenience food’!

  • Kristin (Cook, Bake and Nibble) November 17, 2010, 11:32 am

    I love making big pots of soup, chili or stews (curried lentils being a fave!) at the beginning of the meal and freeze leftovers!


  • Autumn November 17, 2010, 11:33 am

    I’m with those who suggest a little menu planning. Before I head to the grocery, I spend 10 min. and think through my week– will the husband or I have several dinners out or mostly be eating at home? Then I pick a few recipes and make sure I either already have the ingredients or add them to my list. I usually make one or two things on Sunday so I am ready to start the week, then I do more cooking as time allows during the week. And if I make soup, I always stick a cup or two in the freezer for emergencies 🙂 I have tons of those ziplock plastic one-cup containers, perfect for that.

  • Amber K November 17, 2010, 12:36 pm

    I have been obsessed with my black bean casserole lately. I have never tried freezing it though, so I wouldn’t know if it would be good or not!

    Here’s what I do:

  • Annalisa November 17, 2010, 1:07 pm
  • zestycook November 17, 2010, 2:33 pm

    Hi Caitlin, I like to freeze cooked pasta in ziploc bags and then you just have to drop it in hot water and voila. I also then put pasta sauce of your choice in ice cube trays and just pop them out and thaw. Super quick and simple to do!

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit November 17, 2010, 2:40 pm

    I definitely make big meals to save time during the week. Vegetarian lasagna is always good, and I like making big batches of grain salads- rice or quinoa usually. I can eat the same thing for a few days in a row 🙂

  • kathleen November 17, 2010, 3:39 pm

    i just started making double batches of food this week and putting half in the freezer. i’m trying to have some quick meals on hand for when my baby arrives.

    things that freeze well:

    home-made pasta sauce
    soak dried beans, cook them and then freeze them in their cooking liquid (they take a long time but dried beans are dirt cheap)
    cook brown rice, pre-portion it and throw it in the freezer when it’s still warm
    frozen veggies are always great to have on hand, pair with some soy sauce, brown rice and a tofu/tempeh and you have yourself a meal in less than 10 minutes.

    i’ve been using tempeh and sunshine burgers for quick protein options when i absolutely do not feel like cooking but am starving.

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