Meet The Freezer Friendz!

Looking for a way to simplify dinnertime in your home?
You've come to the right place!
Our freezer cooking recipes are sure to take the headache out of evening meal prep.
We invite you to leave comments after you try a recipe, as well.
We'd love to know what you think!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Easy Chicken Manicotti - by Tish

Yields 6 servings

1.5 lbs. UNcooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts/tenders, cut into strips
1t. garlic salt
pepper to taste
1 t. oregano or Italian seasoning
1 (8 oz. box = 14 shells) UNcooked manicotti shells
1 (28-30 oz.) jar or spaghetti sauce
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
optional toppings: olives, green peppers, onions, mushrooms, etc to your liking

Assembly Directions:
Line counter top or large cookie sheet with waxed paper. Place chicken on waxed paper and sprinkle with garlic salt and seasonings. Insert seasoned chicken into uncooked manicotti shells, stuffing from each end of shell to fill if necessary.

Freezing Directions:
Option 1: Spread 1/3 of spaghetti sauce in ungreased 13X9X2 baking dish. Arrange filled shells on sauce in dish. Top with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with cheese (and option toppings, if desired). Wrap unbaked dish tightly with foil, label and freeze.
Option 2: Place filled shells back in plastic forms from box or on cookie sheet and flash freeze. When frozen, put in freezer bag. Seal, label and freeze.

Serving Directions:
Option 1
: Unwrap & bake right from freezer at 350 degrees for 1.5 hours. If already thawed, about 1 hour.
Option 2: Assemble as above, using as much sauce and as many shells as needed. Seven shells fit nicely in an 8X8 pan. Repackage and freeze any remaining sauce for next time.

For singles or doubles, Option 2 – flash freezing the filled shells – works great. You can take out as many shells as you need and aren’t faced with a huge amount of leftovers.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Tish's Pocket Burgers

For this recipe I divided the meat into 3 pizza burger patties and 3 BBQ cheddar patties but you can do all of one kind. So to do all of one kind (ie. 6 patties) use 1 1/2 lbs of beef. Otherwise use 3/4 lb to make 3 of each kind.

Pizza Burgers - 3 patties (4 if you make small patties)
3/4 lb. ground beef (don't use super lean or they get too dry)
Salt and black pepper to taste
1/4 tsp of garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 - 1/2 tsp of oregano
small can of tomato sauce/pizza sauce
2-4 oz small pepperoni, cut into small bits (you could use browned Italian sausage, onions, mushrooms, or any pizza topping you like - just don't put too much or it will squish out)
4 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
3 - 4 hamburger buns

Season beef with seasonings. Shape into patty with shallow well in middle of patty for the fillings. Spread small amount of sauce onto patty then add small amt. of toppings. Take a small amount of beef and place over filling and seal edges. Then place into freezer bags and freeze.

On day of cooking, thaw patties completely. Then you can grill, pan fry, or broil then to your desired doneness. Just remember not to flatten them with a spatula or the filling will ooze out!

BBQ Cheddar Burgers - 3 patties or 4 if you make them smaller
3/4 lb. of ground beef (not too lean or they dry out)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. onion powder
chili powder to taste (I used about 1-2 tbsp of dark chili powder)
BBQ sauce
4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese (you can use any shredded cheese you like)
3-4 hamburger buns

Season beef with seasonings. Shape into patties with shallow well in the middle. Spread small amt. of BBQ sauce onto patty and add cheese. Place small amount of beef over toppings and seal edges. Place into freezer bags and freeze.

On day of cooking, thaw completely and grill, pan fry or broil to desired doneness. Remember not to flatten them with spatula or the filling will ooze out.

Yields 6 patties

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Chicken Stuffed Shells by Wendy

1 Box Large Shells (for stuffing)
1 Box Stovetop Stuffing
1 stalk celery chopped
2 cups Chicken-chopped or 1 Lg. can of chicken
1 cup Mayo
2 cans Cream of Chicken Soup
1 can water
1 cup Parmesan Cheese

Cook Shells according to directions on box. Prepare Stuffing Mix according to directions on box. Add celery, chicken and mayo to prepared stuffing. Mix. Fill shells with the stuffing mix using a Medium Scoop (2 Tblsp). Put stuffed shells into 2 baking pans.

To make soup mix, pour soup and water into bowl and mix with whisk.

To eat that night: Spread soup mix over both pans of stuffed shells and sprinkle them with Parmesan cheese.

To freeze: Divide stuffed shells into 2 Ziploc bags. Divide soup mix into 2 quart size Ziploc bags. Fill 2 Ziploc bags with 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese each.

Serving Day:
Thaw completely. Bake covered 40-60 minutes at 350 degrees.

Yields: 12-14 servings

Shepherd's Pie by Wendy

1 lb. Prepared Ground Beef
1/2 cup onion
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 garlic clove, pressed
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
16 oz. (1 lb) Mixed Vegetables
18 oz. Jar Beef Gravy
6 servings (about 3 cups) hot prepared instant mashed potatoes (plus ingredients to make potatoes)
2/3 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Chop onion. Heat oil in 10" frying pan over med. heat. Add onion and garlic pressed with garlic press. Cook and stir 2-3 minutes or until tender. Stir in ground beef and seasonings. Add vegetables and gravy to pan. Bring mixture to a boil; spoon into baking pan.

Prepare potatoes according to package microwave directions. Shred cheese in potatoes and mix lightly. Spoon potatoes into pan over meat mixture. Freeze.

Serving Day:
Thaw completely and bake covered 30-40 minutes at 375 degrees or until thoroughly heated.

Yield: 6 servings

Cooks Tip: If not using Make-Ahead Ground Beef, prepare recipe with 1 pound ground beef. Omit oil. Cook ground beef with onion and garlic in frying pan 8-10 minutes or until beef is no longer pink; drain. Stir in seasonings and continue as recipe directs.

This casserole needs only crisp bread sticks and fresh fruit for dessert to complete the menu.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Josiah's Cheeseburger Casserole by Katie

This is a Pokopac family favorite! It use to be just plain Tater Tot Casserole until Josiah decided it would be better with Steak Fries.

1 lb. ground beef, browned
1 can cream of mushroom soup, condensed
American cheese slices
frozen Steak Fries

Layer ground beef in bottom of casserole dish, spread soup over beef, place single layer of cheese slices over beef and soup, top with a layer of frozen steak fries. Double wrap and freeze.

Serving Day: Thaw. Preheat oven to 350. Bake uncovered for approx. 30 minutes. (Until potatoes are crispy and casserole is hot and bubbly.) Serves 4-6