Consider holding a weekly cooking marathon. During this marathon you will make seven identical meals, and package them in family meal size containers, and then pop them in the freezer. Now before you start envisioning eating chili seven nights in a row for dinner, think again.
With the cooking marathon, what you’ll be dealing is making seven meals and popping five or six of them into your deep freezer. Then the following week you will do the same, but with a different meal. And so on and so on. And before you know it, you will have enough meals in your deep freezer to serve a different meal every night that is both home-cooked and convenient.
When you do weekly cooking marathons it’s crucial you came attention to what is on sale that week at the grocery store. If ground beef doesn’t happen to be on sale, it doesn’t make sense economically to make spaghetti sauce or chili for your seven freezable meals. so watch for sales, and plan accordingly.
When you make a meal and your family particularly enjoys it, think about how you can turn that meal into a large batch to make seven meals worth at once. Not all meals are easy to break down this way, so if you decide to do with lasagna as a marathon cooking batch, you may find your only able to make two or three at a time. But then also consider the fact that each of those lasagnas may work for your meal one night and leftovers the following night. So don’t automatically discount something just because it can’t be done in seven individual meal portion sizes.
Once you get the hang of doing cooking marathons, you’ll find it comes much easier. And because of the convenience of using home-cooked meals that are coming straight from your freezer, you may find yourself wanting to make larger batches even on a non-marathon day.
Also read our Freezer Cooking section for advice & recipes on cooking multiple meals and freezing them for later use.