Have I mentioned before I am a terrible cook? It’s true.
The greatest success I have had with getting dinner on the table is when I trick myself into thinking I am doing an organizational project with my food.
Let me explain. Back when my kiddos were babies, the last thing I wanted to do during nap time was cook! SO, to be able to use that time for my home based business, I would make multiple freezer meals and casseroles on the weekend.
And because I always have to be multitasking, I found other friends who also wanted to have meals ready to go in their fridge. Together we would each bring the ingredients for 4 batches of 2 recipes. After chopping and mixing together, we all left with 8 meals for our fridge.
I’m not sure why, but after a few “sessions,” we would stop and I would go back into my Stouffer’s orange box rut.
A few years later, a few friends and I went to Dream Dinners and made meals about every 8 weeks for years.
Our budget crumbled and I stopped doing that. Mind you, I think I spent more money NOT doing Dream Dinners….
The kids were picky and the $200+ price tag on the complete meals made me stop.
Eventually, hubby started cooking. And that is truly divine! However, I NEED to help out more. SO, once again I turned to my favorite meal planning tool – freezer meals.
I think my Wildtree rep, Gretchen, about fell over when I booked my workshop. I have helped her organize her office and spoken to the area Wildtree reps about organizing their businesses. So we know each other well.
And she knows how much I am not a cook nor do I want to be. So here’s all about Wildtree in her words:
My friend Vanessa and I co-hosted the event and had 9 people making meals in my kitchen. It was hoppin’!
Here’s how it works. To start, you buy a Wildtree “bundle” that has the ingredients you will need for the 10 meals you will be making. The Bundles are $75.
Then, before the event you have a list of “proteins” to buy.
Mine totaled $85, but I bought an extra package of chicken ($13) to make chicken for tacos. I also bought everyone’s eggs as well as a container of sour cream to make a dip to share. If the event had not been at MY house, my total would have been $65
Next, I sliced my peppers, limes and celery for the meals. I only needed the chopped celery, but I went ahead and cut up the rest of the celery for my PB and celery snacks for the week.
I bought my onions already diced (You would save another $3-4 if you do that yourself).
Gretchen did a great job of explaining why Wildtree products are great.
She also showed us how much she made at our event. As a direct sales guru I LOVED this! I thought it was great marketing AND guess what – a day later one of my friends became a rep and a second is thinking about it…
If you are thinking about being a Wildtree rep I can attest that Gretchen is an awesome consultant and upline!
Then, we got mixing! Here’s my friend Sheryl mixing up the eggs for her meatloaf.
I made 2 small meatloaves instead of 1 large one. I also bought 2 pounds of shrimp instead of 1- 1 1/2 pounds because I wanted to double that recipe too.
Other than wanting to help hubby with the dinners around here, I want to be able to send my in-laws nice meals to eat. I wish I had the time to do more for them, but this will allow me to be a help with a delicious meal.
Also, I know my kids will balk at some of the meals. Honestly, I don’t think there is a meal we made they both like. So, these meals are for hubby and me. They are to give him some margin in his dinner duties and spice up our dinner palette.
We don’t eat them every night, but I think we will eat 3 a week. Each meal is about $12 since I divided some. The KFC we ate tonight was $18.
How do I store all those meals?
Well, that was a conundrum. Our extra freezer bit the dust this summer and we had to figure out how to dispose of a broken freezer.
THEN, I had to figure out how to make this puny freezer fit all our food. I figured I would not be able to stockpile any freezer deals.
After trying a few different ideas – this is what I came up with.
We like frozen c.r.a.p. Sorry, but we do. So chicken nuggets, pizza rolls, buffalo bites and chicken fries are not something we can run out of, and they are not cheap so I like to buy them on sale or with a coupon.
I had these Crate and Barrel containers holding pasta we didn’t use for years. So I pitched the $4 worth of pasta that was in them and used the containers in the freezer.
The best part is that the bags behind these containers are extra. I have about 2 refill bags of each creating a pantry on my shelf!
This small shelf has 16 meals on it! My freezer meals are stacked 2 deep in a small section.
The top shelf has 2 breakfast bins and hash browns easily accessible at 6 am. FYI, I am an amazing morning chef!
I’ll tell you all about that another day!
The bottom of the freezer is still a hot mess, but at least I am making progress!
Do you menu plan? DO you make meals ahead or make freezer meals? Share your tips with us in the comments!