Mar 1, 2011
I know this is probably something many moms rely on, but I’ve found it very necessary in this season of twin babies to
COOK MEAT BEFORE I NEED IT!
(Also, if you have twins, this doesn’t apply to you in the first 3 months. If you’re just eating a lot of frozen pizza or takeout, that’s okay!)
Here’s what I do:
- I buy boneless, skinless chicken breasts when they’re on sale. I typically buy 2-3 large packages.
- I bake mine on 2 large pizza pans.
- Let them cool.
- Cube about half, shred about half.
- Bag it in 3 & 4 cup quantities in quart-sized freezer bags.
- Great for lots of different soups, fajitas, enchiladas, casseroles (or hot dish if you’re in Minnesota), chicken pot pie.
[from Kimberly Belle on Flickr]
*Last time I did this, I was just going to do shredded chicken, so I used my crock pot with a little bit of water in the bottom, and they were so tender, I was able to shred them with my (clean!) fingers. Super easy!
- Buy a few large packages when they’re on sale.
- Typically I try to cook it with diced onion (I have a Pampered Chef chopper thingy and that makes onions easier). Since most recipes that call for ground beef typically call for sauteed onion as well, I just do them together from the get-go.
- Freeze in quart-sized freezer bags in 2 & 3 cup quantities.
- Great for spaghetti, tacos, taco soup, chili, shepherd’s pie, sloppy joe’s.
[from Mike on Flickr]
- Buy a half-ham when they’re on sale.
- Since they’re already cooked, you just slice it, cube it, whatever!
- Freeze in quart-sized freezer bags in 1-2 cup quantities.
- I use this for ham & bean soup, wild rice soup, egg bake.
[from Deb on Flickr]
*Make sure you write the quantity on the bag. Very helpful!
*I keep the kinds of meat separated in my deep freezer in plastic shopping bags. It’s just easier than rifling through the freezer when the time comes. And then you don’t lose any down in the abyss of the deep freeze!
Basically, if I didn’t do this, we wouldn’t eat. I know there are probably greener and/or cheaper ways to do it, but this is how it works for me right now.
This has really cut down on my cooking time. What other pre-cooking hacks have you found helpful with multiples or many young children?