March 25, 2020 - 6 am EST
It can be hard enough to plan for weekday dinners, but if you’re now in quarantine and cooking every single meal from home — it can be downright overwhelming. Luckily, there are healthy meals to freeze that you can make in bulk with general pantry staples. A lot of these recipes have general ingredients that allow for substitutes if your local supermarket is running low.
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In general, make sure that you’re wrapping all of these meals in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and as air-tight as possible. From there, you don’t even need to allow time to thaw — you can pull them out of the freezer and pop them in the oven or heat them up on the stove. Check out the recipes ahead and enjoy.
Not only is minestrone soup comforting and filling — you can make it with a variety of pantry staples you might have on hand. This recipe just calls for garlic, onions, a sweet potato and any other vegetables or pasta that you’d like to toss in. This is a good way to use those extra veggies before they turn bad, while also adding nutrients into your meal for later.
Pasta With Broccoli & Lemon Breadcrumbs
This is a recipe that is great for families — and it’s a great way to sneak in vegetables. You cook the pasta to an al dente tenderness, and then add in onions and seasonings until they’re caramelized. From there, throw in as much broccoli as you want and cook until tender when pierced with a fork. Top with cheese if you wish, or salt and pepper.
Stuffed Shells With Italian Sausage & Wild Mushrooms
Everyone loves stuffed shells, and this is a way to make this kid-friendly favorite a little more interesting. Jane Ko, from the site A Taste of Koko, has perfected it using Italian sausage, mushrooms, marinara sauce (you can even used canned if you want) and cheese, of course! The recipe yields an entire casserole dish full of shells, making it ideal for large families or even leftovers. Pop the casserole dish in the freezer and directly into the oven at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until they’re completely heated throughout.
Joey Skladany shared an exclusive first look with DoctorOz.com of his pork dumpling recipe from his upcoming cookbook, Basic Bitchen. The recipe combines cabbage, pork, ginger, and garlic for a delicious dumpling that you’ll want to continue making. He also includes a recipe for a dipping sauce. These little guys can be frozen for up to three months in an airtight container and take six to eight minutes to cook.
Chili is a hearty, warm and filling household favorite — and this vegetarian version is no exception. It replaces the ground beef with lentils and also calls for tomatoes, red bell peppers, and any other veggies that you’d like to throw in. It would definitely be a good way to get rid of any extra kale that you have lying around the house as well. Toss it in a Tupperware container to freeze, and then heat it up on the stovetop until hot and delicious.
Al Pastor Taco Pizza
If you think this pizza looks delicious — wait until you taste it. Molly Yeh really decks out this pizza with lots of spices (cumin, oregano, paprika, garlic) so that it’s extra flavorful. Once everything is assembled, freeze it for your next pizza night. It would also be impressive to have on hand if you were entertaining guests.
Shrimp & Veggie Fried Cauliflower Rice
This recipe is sure to be a family favorite. Cook shrimp in a skillet until they’re bright pink, then remove them and add in cauliflower rice, garlic and olive oil. From here, stir in greens and vegetables of your choice, as well as beans. Add the shrimp back in the pan along with a little soy sauce. Once this mixture is heated throughout, place it in the freezer and grab when you’re ready to enjoy.
Baked Chicken Taquitos
These baked chicken taquitos from the blog Two Peas and Their Pod are a perfectly delicious way to mix up types of meals that you’re freezing. While taquitos are typically fried, this version makes them a little healthier by baking them. They are super easy to make — essentially shredded chicken and cheese — but you can top them with whatever you want. They also stay fresh for up to one month in the freezer, and can be perfectly re-heated by heating the oven to 425 degrees and baking for 15-20 minutes.
Easy Baked Ziti
Your family will love every bite of this baked ziti from the site Love and Lemons. It contains lots of fresh spinach, lemon ricotta and smoked mozzarella. Layer the marinara sauce on the top and bottom for a truly flavorful kick. This freezes well, just make sure you sprinkle some fresh cheese on top before popping it in the oven.
Stewy Beans & Greens
This is the definition of hearty comfort food. Dice an onion, garlic cloves and any seasonings that you want and sauté for at least three minutes. Then, add in chickpeas, spinach, tomatoes, and vegetable stock. Heat for at least 20 minutes. Once this is heated throughout, let it cool down a bit and toss in the freezer. When you’re ready to enjoy, heat it up on the stove top until thawed and heated through.
Lasagna is the perfect option for serving families — and this vegetarian version is packed with nutrients. It has bell peppers, onions, zucchini, carrots, and any other veggie that you want to toss in. Don’t worry, it also contains lots of cheese — which is perfect to add on top just before you pop it in the oven.