The Flashfood App enables frugal grocery purchases while also promoting sustainability by diverting food that was destined for the landfill. This app links consumers looking for grocery deals with stores looking to sell nearly expired food. And it’s also a great way to try out new foods and challenge yourself to experiment with recipes! Find out about the app here: Introduction to Flashood
I had a wonderful, simple-sounding idea to make a 5-10 bagged uncooked freezer meals in an afternoon (with some reasonably priced components purchased through Flashfood) that I could pop into the slow cooker to make dinner preparation time in the late afternoon less of a bottleneck in our house. I was finding that the little people (and sometimes big people!) were often tired and hungry at the end of the day and I was finding it difficult to spend a lot of time preparing dinner in the kitchen.
But my well-intentioned bulk food preparation day just wasn’t happening! I tried to make a couple of meals and ended up cooking one immediately, then tried to make another and ended up cooking a big batch and freezing leftovers…then the meal I had planned with beef wasn’t sounding as good as I initially thought so I made something else with it!
So today I’m sharing the recipes that I had some success with! I took an extra few minutes here and there (made a double batch instead of a single in my usual meal preparation time, for example) and was able to stock a few time-saving meals or meal components in my freezer.
I often purchase chicken through Flashfood and in general it is on the app because it is about to expire–Flashfood is all about helping save food waste, after all. This means I need to process it right away.
I have found one of the easiest ways to process and store it is to immediately put the chicken in the slow cooker (with or without seasoning), cook overnight, then shred and portion it out into meal sized servings to be frozen for later use. I use this ready-made chicken in many quick meals such as enchiladas or quesadillas, home made pizza, salad bowls, or pasta bakes.
I used this recipe, Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff, and was very happy with the result! I put my Flashfood beef and all of the ingredients up to the Dijon mustard in the freezer bag (then into the slow cooker or instant pot). As I have young children who investigate their food I chop the mushrooms very small!
This recipe, Instant Pot Butter Chicken, works great as a freezer meal, but I also found it almost as quick to simply double or triple the spice mix and have a couple of recipes worth ready to go in the cupboard in storage containers.
After that it’s a simple matter of combining the spice mix, chicken, coconut milk, and tomato paste and popping them in the slow cooker or instant pot for a quick meal. I stir in peas while it’s still hot and it’s now a family favourite!
I shared slow cooker instructions for my favourite chili on the blog in this post! The components are quick to prepare and could be frozen for later use or thrown into the crockpot immediately.
What are your favourite make-ahead meals?