I've found a way to keep my freezer organized that saves me both time and money. I have plastic bins that fit on the shelves and are labeled as to contents: chicken, beef, fish. I have 2 other bins labeled "prepared food" and "prepped ingredients".
"Prepared food" contains individually frozen servings of cooked meats (chicken breast, pork chops, slices of meatloaf, etc.) and also portions of soups, stews, and casseroles. I always cook more than we'll eat at one meal, so I have planned leftovers.
"Prepped ingredients" holds recipe/meal size portions of chopped vegetables, cooked beans, rice, pasta, etc. Anytime I chop veggies, I chop 2 or 3 times what I need and package the extra for the freezer. I cook the entire bag of dry beans and do the same. Same goes for rice.
I have a vacuum sealer that works great for this. The packages are compact and easily stacked and nothing gets freezer burn. I've had great success with onions, leeks, celery, bell peppers, mushrooms (sauteed first), and even carrots. No more slimey rotten veggies going to the compost pile.
We no longer waste food (or money), and I have a supply of ready-to-go meals and ingredients for when I don't have time or don't feel like going to a lot of trouble to get a home-cooked meal on the table. We also save money by not being tempted to order take-out. Hard to justify that when there is easy, healthy food ready to re-heat.
By Carol from TX
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