I’m not really blogging: Freezer Cooking Party, Round 1

One day, I’ll blog.  This is not that day.  lol.  I don’t have the time or mental real estate available to take on another project at the moment, BUT it is a good place to share info like this cooking adventure.  So, here you go!

We got together and cooked last night.  In case you want to replicate it, here’s the info.

In the end, you’ll have:
6 gallon-sized bags and 3 quart-sized bags of taco soup
4 batches of Italian Sausage w/ peppers and onions
6 batches of chicken teriyaki
6 batches of chile lime chicken fajitas
6 batches of Dijon chicken, aka World’s Best Chicken according to pinterest (and the original recipe)
40+ burritos that are ready to microwave-and-go
6-9 servings of taco meat to jump start Taco Night

I stuck to recipes I use all the time.  The only new one in this batch is the Chicken Teriyaki and it came highly recommended on the Pinterest.  I didn’t want to make 6 batches of a recipe only to find out it was a dud.  We may get more adventurous later, but for now, this seemed like the best bet.

As for price, everyone shops differently, but by using our own spices, olive oil, and making our own taco seasoning, we were able to pull this off for just over $300.  We did 2 shopping trips: one to Sams for meats, frozen veggies, spaghetti sauce, peppers, onions, and limes.  The other to Walmart for everything else.  We split the shopping responsibilities and they went really quickly.

Here are the Recipes.

And here’s the Shopping List.

The day of the cooking, here’s how to put it together:

  • FIRST THING–Dice 2 onions. Brown all meat with diced onions.  Once cooked, add taco seasoning.
  • Trim and butterfly chicken breasts.
  • Mix all marinades in bulk (ours were all 6x the original recipe except for the Italian sausage w/ peppers and onions…we only made 4 of those).  Then divide out among bags.
  • Slice onions and green peppers into fajita strips for fajitas and Italian sausage w/ peppers and onions.  Dice the rest of the onions.
  • Once taco meat is finished:
    Assemble taco soup in large kettle if you have one.  If not, dump canned beans and vegetables into individual bags.  Add taco meat.  DON’T cook the soup.  Just bag it up once everything is assembled.
    Make burritos.
    Any leftover taco meat will be bagged in 1-2 lb portions to be used for tacos, taco salads, etc.
  • For all other recipes, just dump ingredients in bags and remove as much air as possible.  Air = freezer burn = crappy tasting food.

We learned a few things along the way.  Here are some tips and tricks:
If you can, buy larger quantities (ex. 3 large cans of beans instead of 6 small cans).
Label bags before you fill them.
If you want to make your own taco seasoning, try this.  We love it.  http://www.smells-like-home.com/2011/06/diy-taco-seasoning/
Your own ranch mix, try this.  http://thecraftyblogstalker.com/smaller-portion-best-homemade-ranch/?showComment=1385332419483#c2584216732193509382

If you have any questions or comments, let me know.  We had fun with it.  I hope you will too!

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