A few weeks ago I got together with my sister-in-law to make a bunch of freezer meals (Chicken Cacciatore was in the mix ;)) She had a baby a few months ago, and although the initial shock of bringing a newborn into the house has worn off, having a freezer stocked with meals that you just have to defrost and put in your crock pot is ideal when you’ve got a kid in the house.
But honestly, they’re ideal no matter what stage of life you’re in. Which is why I also toted away 4 meals from our get-together.
I pulled out this Beef Stew on a Saturday morning. I hadn’t food shopped yet, and I had a lot of other errands to run that day. Knowing I’d be tired when I got home, and knowing Chris and I would want something other than grilled cheese for dinner, I stuck this in the crock pot before we hurried off to our busy days. When we came home….we could hardly restrain ourselves from diving head first into the crock pot to eat it. Beef stew was a staple in my house growing up. Besides being delicious and comforting, it’s very nostalgic.
This recipe doesn’t call for the potatoes to be frozen, so I boiled about a pound and a half of red potatoes and added them to the crock pot (fully cooked) in the last half hour the pot was on. But you can also buy a frozen package of pre-diced potatoes and throw them into the crock pot at the same time as the freezer bag in the morning.
Either way though, add potatoes to the mix. Drink some wine with this. Wear sweatpants. Put on a good movie. And you will have achieved happiness for the day.
Crock Pot Freezer Meal: Beef Stew
- 1 lb. beef stew meat
- 1 package baby carrots
- 1 package dry onion soup mix
- 2 (10.5 oz) cans cream of mushroom soup (low sodium if you can find it)
- 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
- 1 package frozen green beans
- 1 1/2 lbs red potatoes, diced OR 1 package frozen diced potatoes (add day-of cooking)
- Toss ingredients in a gallon size freezer bag (except potatoes) and give it a shake to mix.
- When Ready To Eat: Thaw in the fridge 24 hours OR defrost in microwave for 7 – 10 minutes, turning once. Put all contents in the crock pot. Add potatoes. (Or you can boil them 30 mins before eating and add to the pot then, fully cooked.)
- Cook on LOW 8 – 10 hours.
My Two Cents
What’s not to like…
I know some people like diced tomatoes in the mix, so feel free to add a can of those (drained), or instead of green beans, toss in a bag of frozen peas instead. Really, you can just put what you usually put in your own beef stew in a zip lock bag, freeze it, then stick it in the crock pot the day you’re ready to eat it.
Perfect for the cooler weather we’re having right now, that’s for sure