Getting Ready: Filling Up the Freezer

Being the organized and prepared (read: control-freak) gal that I am...I've started trying to fill our freezer with some extra meals, in anticipation of little Mr. Gabriel's arrival.

Have I mentioned lately how hard this "aiming at an unknown target" thing is for me? But I digress....

So I'm filling the freezer.

I got busy on this project over the past week. So easy! Just make supper like normal every night...only make more than normal.

First, one night I made a double batch of Lentil Stew...and froze an extra meal.

One day I used my big crockpot to make a double batch of some Crockpot Lasagna...and froze two extra meals.

One night we tried this new recipe that I'd been wanting to try. It was yummy! I doubled it and we now have an extra meal of it in the freezer also!

Italian Pasta Bake

1 pound ground beef or turkey
1/4 cup chopped onion or 3 Tablespoons dry minced onion
4 cups tomato sauce (I doubled this recipe. I used one 29-oz can tomato sauce, and one quart of tomatoes that Kris and I had canned)
2 cups water
2 Tablespoons basil
1 Tablespoon oregano
1 teaspoon garlic powder or one clove fresh garlic
Sea salt to taste
10 ounces whole wheat pasta, any shape (I used bow-tie)
2 cups shredded cheese

Brown meat and onion together. Meanwhile, bring tomato sauce, water and herbs and spices to a boil. Stir in pasta and boil until tender. Do not drain. The pasta should have absorbed the liquid! Mix in cooked meat. Salt as desired. Spread mixture into a 9×13 casserole dish and top with cheese. Bake uncovered at 350° for 25 minutes or until cheese is melted and the casserole is heated through and through.

And then, I made a big 'ol batch of Kris' Italian Stew...and put away THREE extra meals in the freezer!

Now I've always known this as "Kris' Italian Stew"...but I honestly don't know if it is just an Italian Stew recipe that Kris passed on to me, or if it is a recipe that she invented. But looking at it - and the directions - I really believe it is a recipe that she invented. (She was a whiz in the kitchen!)

Kris' Italian Stew

3 lbs. ground beef (I used ground venison)
1 large onion
Garlic powder or pressed fresh garlic (I used fresh - so good for us!)
8 cups beef stock (I use "Better than Bouillon" because it doesn't have MSG...I get it at Wally World)
2 qts. tomatoes
Palm-full of basil
Little bit less than a palm-full of Italian seasoning
Box of rotini (I usually follow directions and use rotini, but this time I got a wild hair and used medium shells instead. I'm wild and crazy that way...)

Brown the ground beef and onion. Add garlic, tomatoes, and beef stock and seasoning and bring to a boil. Add pasta and boil until pasta is cooked...then lower temperature. Enjoy!

In our utility room we have an extra fridge (the couple we bought this house from unexpectedly left their fridge behind - score!) and a chest-style freezer (I was young and naive when we purchased it like 12 years ago...I would so buy a stand-up if I could do that over!).

This means lots of room for me to make and freeze more meals, right???

No, unfortunately.

Even though we have more freezer space than most people - with our monthly co-op buys, plus the 98 pounds of venison we recently had processed...I actually don't have any more room to keep on freezing extra meals like this!

Filling Up The Freezer: Check


  1. I am so impressed with your organization. I would say you are "nesting" big time! So excited for you to have your new son soon. It sounds like God is giving you a nudge to get things done! I am checking your blog every day to see if it is the day!

    Love to you all,
    janet, kevin, ted, sophia, philip, and elijah

  2. You go girl!! You never cease to amaze me!! Maybe your Mom can spare some freezer space! ; ) Love to all!

  3. Janet, I sure hope it is the Lord giving me "a nudge"...I don't know how much longer I can wait before I implode!

    Melissa - I had JUST thought the same thing...I need to go text her...



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