Thursday, January 31, 2013

Organizing My Freezers and Batch Cooking

I am very lucky in that I have not only a side-by-side refrigerator in my kitchen, but I also have another in my garage (we got it from a neighbor for cheap) and a large deep chest freezer.  Just a couple of weeks ago I reorganized my freezers so that the garage side-by-side freezer holds all the already prepared "heat and eat" foods that I have made in the past couple of months.  The chest freezer holds the "raw/has to be cooked" foods and the kitchen freezer holds odds and ends.   Now that everything is reorganized so they don't have to dig in the chest freezer, it makes it very easy for my sons to go out to the garage side-by-side and grab out a burrito, calzone, or meatballs and just heat them in the microwave for a quick snack or lunch.

Tip:  Be sure to label the bag/container with what is in it along with reheating instructions.

I purchased 18 lbs of hamburger for $1/lb a few days ago.  I am cooking up some of the hamburger with taco seasoning and will make burritos to freeze so my sons can heat in the microwave whenever they are hungry.  I also had several chicken breasts that I got on sale a couple weeks ago that I boiled and shredded.  I also made refried beans in my crockpot a month or so ago (I'll post that recipe - soooo easy!) so I will just thaw those out and add to my burritos.  I individually wrap each burrito in plastic wrap (tin foil works too) and then label it with the filling ingredients.  I then put about 10-12 burritos (depending on the size of the tortillas I used) in a gallon freezer bag and freeze.

Here are some burrito fillings my family likes:

Seasoned Hamburger
Shredded Chicken
Shredded Pork
Refried Beans/Black Beans
Cheese (of course)
Green Chili
Rice/Spanish Rice
Green Pepper

*Don't forget that you can also make breakfast burritos (with eggs/egg beaters, hashbrowns, etc.)

Add guacamole and sour cream to your burrito once you are ready to eat it (after heating).  If you add it to the burrito before freezing, the sour cream has a tendency to separate and the guac can get an unpleasant texture.  I also prefer to add lettuce on top of the burrito after it is heated.

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