20-Somethings - Your Favourite Big-Batch Meals




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freedomreins
05-17-2009, 08:53 AM
I really like making big batches of things like chili and freezing them to use later. My absolute favourite is the chicken chili with sweet chili sauce. I'm not sure where I got the recipe from, it may have been here, but I'm happy to share it is anyone wants it. I've been making it for a few years now and it's always SOOOO tasty, even without the chicken! I have a pot of taco soup (made with Quorn mince) simmering at the moment, though to be honest it kind of looks like chili too!

What are your favourite big-batch meals that you can freeze and save for busy days rather than relying on pre-packaged frozen meals? I'd love to hear some new suggestions! :)


bacilli
05-17-2009, 09:05 AM
I cook just about everything in big batches, we have a chest freezer that's always stocked with homemade goodies. My favorites are probably black bean soup, black bean and corn burgers, and veggie soup. I also make tons of low-fat enchilada sauce at a time, it freezes well. Curried lentils also freeze well.

Can I have your chili recipe? DH LOVES chili!

gggirls
05-17-2009, 09:09 AM
I'd love the chili recipe also - thanks!


river
05-17-2009, 09:22 AM
I would love the chili recipe too!

My favs for big batches are chilis, soups, lasagne, enchiladas.

freedomreins
05-17-2009, 10:13 AM
I make it from memory now because it's so easy so here's hoping I have everything right!

Sweet Chicken Chili
4 chicken breasts, cooked and chopped into pieces
1/2 onion, chopped (I usually use a whole small one!)
1 bell pepper, chopped (I use red but the original recipe called for green)
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 bottle sweet chili sauce
1 small can tomato paste/puree
3 cloves garlic, minced
pinch cumin
1 tbsp sugar

It's really easy - put everything in a big pot and leave it to simmer for at least an hour.

With six servings per batch (I don't know exactly what they measure out to), it's about 3.5 points for a good-sized bowl and it's very filling. Without the chicken it works out to about 2 points per bowl. It's probably best to put the ingredients into the recipe builder or to calculate it out when you make it because it's a great recipe to make variations of by adding more vegetables or different beans or chicken substitutes.

:) Enjoy!

stellarosa27
05-17-2009, 08:47 PM
I make soup in big batches, then I have it as part of my lunch each day. If I don't have soup before I eat (its always broth/veggie based) I'm starving.

kelly315
05-17-2009, 10:48 PM
shepherd's pie, with ground turkey breast instead of hamburger, and no butter/etc in the mashed potatoes.
Yum, and a large portion is only about 370 calories.

Daimere
05-17-2009, 10:53 PM
How do you store your meals to freeze?

kaplods
05-17-2009, 11:23 PM
The chicken chili sounds great, but was wondering if this is the kind of sweet chili sauce you use?

http://www.importfood.com/samp1001.html

Wolf Goddess
05-18-2009, 12:27 AM
Marinara sauce. It can be used for spaghetti, pizza, lasagna, ziti, meatball subs, and numerous other applications.

freedomreins
05-18-2009, 04:28 AM
kaplods - I just buy whichever sweet chili sauce is on sale at the supermarket (that has as few calories etc as possible) and then use the recipe builder on WW online to make sure the points are the same.

WolfGoddess - I LOVE Marinara, that's a great idea.

Daimere - I bought a big group of cheap tupperware for 3 (about $6) and have been using that to store things. It's also been excellent for packing my lunch as it has a variety of different sizes. Before that I would put the chili in freezer bags. It's really easy to pop out of the bag when you want to eat it, just peel the bag off and put the chili in the microwave.

kaplods
05-18-2009, 05:12 AM
kaplods - I just buy whichever sweet chili sauce is on sale at the supermarket (that has as few calories etc as possible) and then use the recipe builder on WW online to make sure the points are the same.

Thanks I just wanted to make sure it was the slightly syrupy asian-style chili-based chili sauce (almost like a thin pepper jam or jelly), and not the american, Heinz-style chili sauce which is basically a spiced, chunky tomato ketchup.

freedomreins
05-18-2009, 05:52 AM
Oh yes, sorry. It's an asian-style chili sauce. :)

RememberHowToSmile
05-18-2009, 10:34 AM
Spaghetti make up a whole batch and freeze.
BBQ slow cooker chicken.
I know this isn't a meal but I'll make large batches of brown rice and freeze it.
Soup

mayness
05-18-2009, 11:22 AM
Lasagna rolls!

Normal lasagna freezes well, too, but with the rolls it's easy to take just a single portion and bring it for lunch or whatever.

Here's a recipe I've used: http://www.recipezaar.com/Spinach-Lasagne-Rolls-248492 Even as written it's pretty healthy.. I use whole-wheat noodles, substitute Italian seasoning blend for the nutmeg, and use home-made or other reasonably healthy pasta sauce. This is good with ground turkey in it, too!

After they're cooked, you can pre-freeze them on a baking sheet (so they don't stick together) and put them all into a big container or freezer bag. If you like more sauce, you could freeze pasta sauce in an ice cube tray then store the cubes with them! (I just thought of that, I'll try it next time for sure!)

mayness
05-18-2009, 11:24 AM
I know this isn't a meal but I'll make large batches of brown rice and freeze it.

Yes! No way am I gonna wait 40 minutes for brown rice to cook most nights. I cook a big batch, rinse it with cold water (to stop the cooking and keep it from getting mushy) then freeze it in gallon size freezer bags in a thin flat layer (1/2 inch maybe?). That way I can break off a chunk of rice when I want it, instead of having to use the whole package. I just microwave it from frozen, no thawing.

orthodiva
05-18-2009, 03:38 PM
Spaghetti make up a whole batch and freeze.
BBQ slow cooker chicken.
I know this isn't a meal but I'll make large batches of brown rice and freeze it.
Soup

Oooo, can you share your BBQ slow cooker chicken? I bought a single serve slow cooker that has been sitting in the corner unused because I can't work up the courage to try a recipe in it. And I would love to try some healthy BBQ chicken!

freedomreins
05-18-2009, 04:05 PM
I make BBQ chicken with a cup of ketchup and a can of diet coke (cook the chicken for 45 minutes or so in the sauce on the stove or in the oven). It's enough sauce to do about 5 chicken breasts. It makes amazing sandwiches the next day as well!

stellarosa27
05-18-2009, 10:29 PM
I make it from memory now because it's so easy so here's hoping I have everything right!

Sweet Chicken Chili
4 chicken breasts, cooked and chopped into pieces
1/2 onion, chopped (I usually use a whole small one!)
1 bell pepper, chopped (I use red but the original recipe called for green)
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 bottle sweet chili sauce
1 small can tomato paste/puree
3 cloves garlic, minced
pinch cumin
1 tbsp sugar

It's really easy - put everything in a big pot and leave it to simmer for at least an hour.


Okay, so I just made this with a few modifications (no sugar and I added a bag of frozen corn kernels) SO GOOD. Thanks so much, Freedom, this was awesome - and so filling.:carrot:

hello pinki
05-18-2009, 11:15 PM
My top 3 would be Green Chili Burritos, Meat Sauce, and Turkey/mushroom/spinach lasagna.

Cj

TinaTiny82
05-19-2009, 12:57 AM
Lasagna rolls!

Normal lasagna freezes well, too, but with the rolls it's easy to take just a single portion and bring it for lunch or whatever.

Here's a recipe I've used: Even as written it's pretty healthy.. I use whole-wheat noodles, substitute Italian seasoning blend for the nutmeg, and use home-made or other reasonably healthy pasta sauce. This is good with ground turkey in it, too!

After they're cooked, you can pre-freeze them on a baking sheet (so they don't stick together) and put them all into a big container or freezer bag. If you like more sauce, you could freeze pasta sauce in an ice cube tray then store the cubes with them! (I just thought of that, I'll try it next time for sure!)

Oooo! That sounds amazing! I'll have to try it:)

freedomreins
05-19-2009, 07:00 AM
Glad you liked it stellarose!! :D