Friday, April 26, 2013

Planning Ahead I

Today I sat down to make my menu and grocery list for the week. Upon reflection and weekly planning, it dawned on me that I should really start planning some freezer meals for when the baby gets here. Those of you who know me in real life will chuckle because you know how quickly I bounce back, but every mama wants to be lazy a few nights a week, especially when she has a new squishy bitty to snuggle, right? ❤ So I sat down today and came up with a list of some of our favorite meals that I know will freeze well. If you are expecting or need freezer meals for any reason, you may find this list helpful.

Tater Tot Casserole
Kielbasa and Yellow Rice
Hashbrown Casserole with Chicken
Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, and Corn
Chicken Broccoli Braid
Fried Rice
Spaghetti Sauce

The first meal I will showcase (and have to add a photo of later) is our favorite: Tater Tot Casserole

This will make a 13x9" pan, so it is easily divided up into two 8x8" dishes for freezing.
1lb ground beef
1 can (or equivalent homemade) cream of mushroom
1/2 lb (you can use more or less, depending on your personal preference) shredded cheddar cheese
1 bag tater tots

Season and brown your ground beef and drain any remaining grease. Stir the cream of mushroom into the meat and spread into a greased dish. Cover substantially with cheddar cheese and top with tater tots, sprinkling with salt. At this point, you can cover the dish well with aluminum foil and freeze. Take care that you don't use a glass dish, as you put this directly into the oven without defrosting. Bake at 400*F for approximately one hour until cheese is bubbly and tater tots are crispy. This is a delicious meal that my husband and daughters frequently request and takes very minimal time to prepare.

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