We all have those days where we’re just plain out of time to prepare a healthy dinner for our families and fall back on takeout or a drive-thru to at least feed them. But with freezer meals, there’s an easier (and healthier, cheaper, and tastier) way!
Whether you’re looking to make freezer meals for a month, or just need a few healthy freezer meal recipes to help you fight the pull of the drive-thru, we’ve got you covered!
(Psst – these would all be especially good, healthy freezer meals for new moms as she adjusts to life with her new baby! Do a friend or sister a favor and stock her freezer for a couple weeks, in a super short time!)
Seriously is there anything better than quick, simple, and easy cheap dinner ideas that your family will love?
You can find more money- and time-saving topics in our private Facebook group, The Savvy Couple Community, where you can connect with other savvy savers like yourself!
What are freezer meals?
Freezer meals are, simply put, meals that you do the grunt work of assembling ahead of time, typically to be cooked (or at least reheated) at a later date.
They can be as complete as a fully cooked lasagna, wrapped up for freezer storage, or as partially-done as all raw ingredients for a recipe in one container, to dump into your slow cooker on your way to work another day.
How long are freezer meals good for?
Generally speaking, your homemade freezer meals will keep just fine for up to a few months (so make sure to label the date when you make them).
While it depends on the exact ingredients to know exactly how long it lasts, you’ll be fine going past the 2-3 months mark so long as it’s properly wrapped and stored — you’ll only really run the risk of loss of quality/flavor after that, if freezer burn starts to set in.
How to store freezer meals
There are a variety of ways to store your freezer meals, but some of the things you’ll want to consider are:
- When I’m ready to cook this meal, will it easily fit into my cooking appliance/method of choice? Using a round container means a frozen block will fit right into your instant pot without needing to try to thaw and re-shape.
- Will it fit in my freezer? Using a lot of differently shaped containers can make for a logistical nightmare. Consider using gallon-size Ziploc bags that can easily be frozen flat and stacked for a tidy freezer.
- Is this the last step before cooking? While some meals should be frozen as raw ingredients and some can be fully cooked before freezing, you’ll want to make sure you’re making life as easy as possible for when you thaw/cook your freezer meals — fully prepping a lasagna, for example, is a lot easier to cook in a hurry than if you freeze separate containers of sauce/filling have to cook the noodles to finish the meal! In this example, you’d want to assemble your lasagna in an aluminum casserole dish (for example), to simply thaw and bake when you need it.
- Did I leave space to expand? The last thing you want is to put in work to make freezer meals only to find anything expanded and burst in the freezer (things like soups, for example)! Make sure you aren’t overfilling your containers, or you’ll not only have wasted time with your meal prep but now need to clean up your freezer, too!
25+ Easy Freezer Meals For a Month!
If you couldn’t tell already, freezer meals are about as close as you can get to thinking of a meal and *poof* it appears!
Freezer meals are perfect for EVERY family, whether you’re looking for:
- make ahead freezer casseroles
- freezer meals for new moms
- freezer meals for two
- healthy freezer meals on a budget
- meals that freeze well and reheat well
- freezer meals for an instant pot
- freezer meals for picky eaters, or
- freezer meals for beginners
You get the picture. 🙂
Check out this list of 25+ easy freezer meals, to give you enough ideas to fill a whole month, but with only needing to cook on ONE day!
*Do make sure to check your recipes for specific thawing instructions – you’ll either cook straight from frozen or need to thaw for up to 24 hours (shortened in a water bath, in some cases)!
Casseroles & One-Dish Wonders Freezer Meals
These are the types of meals you’d typically cook in the oven, in a casserole dish. Some of them could easily be converted to slow cooker recipes, so don’t let the names and category fool you!
20 Minute Tuscan Pasta Freezer Meal
Found on Six Sisters’ Stuff
You can’t ask for a better recipe than a 20-minute prep to make your meal prep as easy as can be!
To cook: Thaw 24 hours before cooking, or cook straight from frozen (with a slightly longer bake time).
Easy Individual Mini Meat Lasagnas
Found on Money Saving Mom
This recipe had to be included on this list because it’s perfect when you’re in need of freezer meals for one, or you can easily combine into one larger pan to make a family sized lasagna!
To cook: These are partially cooked before freezing. Bake straight from frozen for about an hour (adjust the timing as needed if you made a family-size pan).
Freezer-Friendly Shepherd’s Pie
Found on About A Mom
With kids in tow, you’ll always be thankful for easy meals to freeze and reheat, like this simple casserole. A true budget meal, but also delicious and full of veggies!
To cook: Defrost 24 hours before baking to reheat.
Easy Taco Casserole
Found on Eating On A Dime
Taco Tuesday just got a whole lot easier! All you need is a bag of chips to eat this like a dip and you’ve really got a multi-functional, five-star freezer meal!
To cook: Thaw overnight in the fridge prior to reheating.
Undone Stuffed Pepper Casserole
Found on Kraft
A fun, freezer-friendly twist on a favorite recipe! Frozen stuffed peppers always come out a little too soggy/watery, but this make-ahead freezer casserole solves that problem!
To cook: Thaw overnight in the fridge prior to reheating.
Homemade Chicken Pot Pies
Found on Fabulessly Frugal
Here’s one of the classic, homemade freezer meals we love! There may be a couple of brands that have really cornered the market on frozen pot pies, but the taste is NOTHING compared to making it at home! You can make these as individual sizes, or as a larger casserole type prep for a family size meal!
Make the filling in the crockpot while you’re at work to save even more time!
To cook: Bake straight from frozen in the oven! Takes about an hour or so, per the individual pies recipe.
Chicken and Spinach Stuffed Manicotti
Having a delicious, “gourmet” meal more often for dinner really CAN be possible, with a freezer meal like this! Make this recipe in 2-4 times the size so you can serve one tray fresh and quickly and easily have 2-3 more trays to freeze for another night!
To cook: Bake straight from the freezer for an hour or so.
Chicken, Broccoli, Bacon, & Potato Bake
Found on Kylee Cooks
With a super easy prep, this is one of the perfect meals to freeze before baby arrives, if you’re expecting and freezer stocking! Use pans as large or small as you like, and size up the recipe to easily make a ton of meals in one sitting!
To cook: Thaw in the fridge before cooking. Bake about 1 hour (until chicken is cooked).
Herb-Roasted Chicken & Vegetables
Found on The Seasoned Mom
I love this prep – dump all the ingredients in a pan and freeze! So simple, and so healthy!
To cook: Thaw in the fridge before baking. Cook 1 hour (until chicken is cooked through).
Slow Cooker & Instant Pot Easy Freezer Meals
These recipes are specifically created for crock pot or instant pot cooking, so you can easily have dinner ready by the time you get home!
Freezer to Crockpot Scalloped Potatoes and Ham
Found on Free Tastes Good
When it comes to crockpot freezer meals and kid-friendly taste, this recipe is a big winner! Mix it up and add your own choice of veggies to customize it to your family’s tastes!
To cook: Thaw overnight in the fridge, then dump-and-go on low for about 8 hours!
Found on Num’s The Word
If you’re looking for a huge “yum” factor, then beef stroganoff is a great choice! It’s a great choice if you’re looking for healthy freezer meals on a budget, especially if you can buy the ingredients on sale to do the freezer meal prep!
To cook: Dump frozen (raw) ingredients straight from your freezer bag into a crockpot, no thawing required! Cook on low for about 4+ hours (until meat is fully cooked).
Slow Cooker Pork Chops with Apples and Sweet Potatoes
Found on Stockpiling Moms
I love the recipes with raw ingredients in a bag, that you can just put in the crockpot and like magic end up with dinner that night! The prep work is SO fast — just chop and freeze!
To cook: Thaw overnight in the fridge, then dump into the crockpot and cook on low for about 8 hours!
Crockpot Chicken Fajitas
Found on The Humbled Homemaker
Whether you serve this as a standalone meal, with a side, or wrapped in a tortilla shell, it’s sure to be a hit (and so easy to make)!
To cook: Place in the fridge the night before to thaw. Cook on low for 6ish hours (until chicken is cooked through).
Soups & Stews Freezer Meals
Whether it’s cooked fresh, in a crock pot, or frozen for later, you can’t deny that soups and stews are almost always a nutritious, hearty meal that can satisfy a variety of palates. But they can be time-consuming, making them a less-than-ideal weeknight recipe. These recipes will change that!
Crockpot Beef Stew
Found on Live Simply
This recipe should be high on the list of best freezer meals for new moms — easy to prep, full of good veggies and nutrition, and SO easy to cook when ready!
To cook: Put in the fridge the night before to thaw. Dump in and cook for 8 hours on low in the crockpot!
Wild Rice Soup
Found on Pinch of Yum
The ideal soup to be used for a vegan and/or gluten-free freezer meal (just skip the chicken!), since you can easily reheat in a crock pot OR instant pot to make your night as low-key or fast as needed!
To cook: Put frozen soup in instant pot for about half an hour (high pressure), or a slow cooker for 4 hours on high.
Stir-fry & More
Stir-fry is a healthy and delicious go-to meal for us. Some of these meals could be made into part of a stir-fry (like serving a chicken-only recipe over rice), or could act as a side dish for another main entree meal — it’s up to you!
Shrimp & Veggie Stir Fry
Found on Smart Money Mom
Stir-fry is always a great choice if you’re looking for a healthy meal for your family — especially with this dump and cook freezer meal recipe! You could easily switch up the ingredients to better suit your tastes if shrimp isn’t your thing!
To cook: Dump (from frozen) into a skillet or wok and cook through!
Chinese Beef and Broccoli
Found on Mommysavers
What’s a stir-fry recipe list without beef and broccoli? This might be the best crockpot freezer meal, for how clean and simple it is! Eat as-is, or serve over white rice for a more filling meal!
To cook: Thaw before cooking. Cook on low 4-6 hours. (You could alternatively use a skillet or wok for faster cooking time.)
Simple Cilantro Lime Chicken Marinade
Found on Sweet Peas and Saffron
The thing I love most about these kinds of meat marinade recipes is how versatile they are! You could use the cooked result for a sandwich, salad topper, served with a side – you name it! With a little assembly now, and maybe cooking a side later, you’ll have a flavorful meal on the table with hardly any effort!
To cook: Thaw the night before in the fridge. Bake until cooked through!
Teriyaki Chicken Freezer Meal
Another marinade freezer meals recipe that can be used in so many different ways!
To cook: In crockpot from frozen – 6 hours on low. In crockpot from thawed – about 4 hours on low. Can also be cooked in the oven after thawing overnight!
Chicken Fried Rice
Found on Genius Kitchen
Use this recipe as a complete meal, or leave out the chicken to easily turn it into a side dish. It’s an easy meal to call this a freezer meal for two, or scale it up to make it family sized!
To cook: Fully cooked before freezing, so just thaw/reheat it and you’re good to go!
On-The-Go Freezer Meals
These are meals that you can easily wrap in a piece of foil and have your kids eat in the car on the way to/from practice, or for you to eat the next day while you’re running errands during your lunch hour!
Ham and Cheese Stromboli
Found on Happy Money Saver
It’s rolled up pizza. It’s a family-sized hot pocket. Whatever you want to call it, it’s AMAZING. Making this is a cinch, but be warned you likely won’t have any leftovers for the next day, it’s so good!
To cook: Thaw uncooked, but assembled stromboli before baking.
Hawaiian Sweet Roll Sliders
Found on Make Ahead Meal Mom
For both size and easy prep, these little sandwiches make for easy meals to freeze and reheat — perfect for your kids’ lunchbox! PBJ may be delicious, but mix things up with these yummy sliders!
To cook: Thaw in the fridge overnight, then bake 20-25 minutes!
Found on Smart Money Mom
Who doesn’t love a delicious Philly cheesesteak sandwich? These are a great on-the-go meal, since it’s not just tasty but has some healthy veggies built into it!
To cook: Dump (from frozen) into a skillet and cook through. Serve topped with cheese on a warm roll.
Found on Live Craft Eat
Who doesn’t love a good enchilada recipe? This is one of the best freezer meals for new moms because it’s 1) super easy to reheat and have ready, and 2) filling enough to help replace some of that lost energy from lack of sleep!
To cook: Thaw overnight, then bake per recipe instructions, 0r bake straight from frozen with extended cooking time.
Green Protein Smoothie Freezer Pack
Found on Fed and Fit
The ultimate on-the-go meal: smoothies! You know that we love our smoothies, and the idea of putting bags of prepped smoothie ingredients right into the freezer to dump, blend, and go is pure genius!
To cook: No cooking required! Just dump, blend, and go!
Bonus Breakfast Freezer Meal Recipes:
Homemade Freezer Breakfast Sandwiches
Found on Eat Cake For Dinner
Dinner isn’t the only meal that you can prep and freeze ahead of time! Save money on store-bought or drive-thru breakfast sandwiches and make these delicious breakfast sandwiches for yourself instead!
To cook: Reheat straight from the freezer!
Frozen Mini Pancakes
Found on Frugally Blonde
Pancakes don’t have to wait for weekends anymore! Yes, it’s possible to make “freezer meals breakfast,” and make your mornings that much easier (and yummier)!
To cook: Reheat straight from the freezer, and enjoy!
Make Ahead Cinnamon Rolls
What’s life without a little dessert? Boring. Make these amazing cinnamon rolls for your freezer, and you’ll be prepared with a quick-make dessert for a family gathering, or maybe just for fun next Tuesday!
To cook: Place frozen rolls in a pan, 2 inches apart on all sides. Thaw to room temp/doubled in size, and bake 30 minutes! Yum!
What are your favorite meals to freeze ahead of time to make weeknights easier? Leave us a comment to let us know!
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