12 Low cost, Wholesome Dinner Recipes

The freezer has been doing heavy lifting to save lots of us each meals and cash for some time now.

Is your grocery retailer working an enormous sale on floor beef? Purchase it in bulk and freeze it. Have some leftovers that you just don’t need to toss? Lower down on meals waste and freeze these, too!

Not solely can you purchase recent greens once they’re in season and freeze them for later, however the freezer also can enable you put together for the busy dinner nights forward.

With regards to probably the most scrumptious freezer meal recipes, we all the time ask ourselves the next: Is it simple to meal prep forward? Is it wholesome? Filling?

Wholesome meals will be nice in idea, however typically a salad or veggie soup isn’t satisfying sufficient to fill us up, inflicting snack cravings and pointless spending later.

We’ve put collectively an inventory of 12 simple, inexpensive freezer meal recipes. And so they aren’t simply wholesome; they’re are also hearty sufficient to maintain you glad and stuffed with power all day lengthy.

12 Freezer Meal Recipes For Busy Nights

Photograph courtesy of Cookie and Kate

1. Wholesome Freezer Breakfast Burritos

Crucial meal of the day simply bought simpler. Not solely do these breakfast burritos make the most of cheap, nutrient wealthy substances like candy potatoes and black beans, however they’re additionally simply customizable with any of your favourite substances. As an illustration, high off your burrito with sizzling sauce! Make a bunch for the week to freeze and eat this scrumptious meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Servings: 8

Foremost Elements: Candy potatoes ($1/pound on common), eggs ($4.25/carton on common), black beans ($0.99/can on common)

This is a photo of cilantro lime chicken with lentils.
Photograph courtesy of Pinch of Yum

2. Cilantro Lime Hen and Lentil Rice Bowls

Filled with nutritional vitamins and protein, lentils are one of many most cost-effective and healthiest meals you should buy. This wholesome freezer meal combines taste with ease—simply throw lentils, hen thighs or hen breasts, salsa, hen broth, and aromatics into the crock pot or immediate pot and voila! Dinner is served. Freeze the leftovers in freezer secure luggage or containers, or freeze all of the substances collectively forward of time for straightforward cooking one other day.

Servings: 8

Foremost Elements: lentils ($2/pound on common), hen thighs ($2/pound on common)

This is a photo of chicken and rice soup.
Photograph courtesy of Pinch of Yum

3. Therapeutic Hen and Rice Soup

One other Pinch of Yum recipe that’s positive to get you thru these colder winter nights. With regards to simple freezer meals, soups reign supreme. Not solely does this soup freeze fantastically and use ever-so-affordable boneless skinless hen thighs, however it is usually bursting with immune boosting and anti inflammatory substances like ginger, turmeric, and spinach. Freezer meal prep meets your crock pot for a really hearty meal.

Servings: 4-6

Foremost Elements: Hen thighs ($2/pound on common), jasmine rice ($1.30/pound on common)

4. Cut up Pea Soup

Cut up pea soup has gotten a foul rap through the years, however this isn’t your grandparents’ cut up pea soup. Bursting with taste, heartiness, and depth, this soup is each crave-worthy and will get even higher because it sits in your freezer. Not solely are cut up peas cheap, however they’re stuffed with protein, fiber, and B nutritional vitamins. Make a batch for at this time and freeze half of it (sans toppings) for later—your future self will thanks!

Servings: 4

Foremost Elements: Dry cut up peas ($1.59/pound on common), potato or rutabaga ($1.19/pound on common)

This is a photo of butternut squash lasagna.
Photograph courtesy of Minimalist Baker

5. Butternut Squash Lasagna

What’s extra comforting than having a lasagna within the freezer for a weeknight dinner? This recipe requires simply 10-ingredients to create a creamy casserole that’s filled with veggies, vitamin C from butternut squash, and is dairy-free as well. Between the creaminess of the squash and the meatiness of the mushrooms, we promise you gained’t miss the bottom beef and melted cheese. Assemble, cowl effectively, and freeze. Once you want a scrumptious meal, pull it out, cowl with foil, and bake for an hour in a 350 diploma oven. A wholesome dinner even nonna would approve of.

Servings: 6

Foremost Elements: Butternut squash ($1.99/pound on common), mushrooms ($4.40/pound on common), lasagna noodles ($1.89/package deal on common)

6. Zucchini Lasagna Rolls

In search of conventional purple sauce lasagna flavors with out the pasta? Look no additional. Thinly sliced zucchini replaces lasagna noodles and is full of a ricotta, parmesan cheese, and frozen spinach combination on this lighter model of a traditional. Make it in the summertime when bulk zucchini is extraordinarily low-cost and freeze for the cooler climate. Need additional protein? Add some shredded hen.

Servings: 6

Foremost Elements: Zucchini ($1.99/pound on common), ricotta cheese ($4/container on common)

7. Cauliflower and Tomato Masala with Peas

Indian meals will be among the extra scrumptious freezer meals there are. This tackle Gobi Matar is straightforward, cheap, and vegan. Plus it’s filled with well being boosters like cauliflower, frozen peas, ginger and turmeric. A number of spices and tomato sauce make this freezer meal hearty and warming. Seize it out of the freezer together with some flatbread for dipping or boil a fast pot of quinoa to make the whole dinner gluten free.

Servings: 4

Foremost Elements: Cauliflower ($3.59/head on common), tomato puree ($1.49/can on common), frozen peas ($0.99/bag on common)

This is a photo of hearty vegetarian chili sitting in a white bowl.
Photograph courtesy of Minimalist Baker

8. 5-Ingredient Candy Potato Black Bean Chili

With regards to tasting higher with time, chili is king. This nutritious vegetarian model is the right hearty meal to maintain readily available in your freezer. A spicy kick from the chili powder and sizzling sauce will heat you up on a chilly winter’s evening. Antioxidants? Examine. Filling protein? Examine. Low cost and straightforward? Examine and test. For an additional dollop of wholesome fat, garnish with avocado or add floor turkey!

Servings: 6

Foremost Elements: Candy potatoes ($1/pound on common), black beans ($0.99/can on common), purple salsa ($2.49/jar on common.

Professional Tip

Do you know that you may purchase avocados in bulk and freeze them them to save cash? Seize a bunch for this recipe and save them for different scrumptious freezer meals just like the casserole beneath.

9. Roasted Veggie Enchiladas Casserole

This is a photo of roasted vegetable enchilada casserole dish.
Photograph courtesy of Cookie and Kate

Though enchiladas and casseroles aren’t meals that often scream “well being”, this roasted veggie model could change your thoughts. Stuffed to the brim with cauliflower, candy potatoes, purple peppers, spinach, and black beans, this recipe is filling, satisfying, economical and filled with vitamins. High with bitter cream, lime juice, and use 100% corn tortillas for a vegetarian, gluten free dinner that you just’ll be thrilled to have in your freezer not solely as a weekday possibility, but in addition as a showstopping fundamental dish to serve firm!

Servings: 6-8

Foremost Elements: Candy potatoes ($1/pound on common), black beans ($0.99/can on common), cauliflower ($3.59/head on common), purple bell peppers ($3.49/pound on common)

This is a photo of three veggie burgers.
Photograph courtesy of Love and Lemons

10. Greatest Veggie Burger Recipe

Retailer-bought veggie burgers have been a freezer staple for years, however have you ever ever tried to make your individual? Typically cheaper and far more healthy, home made veggie burgers substitute filler with actual greens. This model combines mushrooms, brown rice, and walnuts within the meals processor for a protein packed meal that even probably the most discerning meat eaters will love. Make a complete batch and freeze them on a parchment-lined sheet pan. As soon as frozen, pop right into a freezer bag for straightforward storage and pull one out to grill, saute or bake if you want a fast, wholesome dinner! Add on a slice of cheddar cheese or maintain this recipe dairy free.

Servings: 8

Foremost Elements: Mushrooms ($4.40/pound on common), brown rice ($0.95/pound on common), uncooked walnuts ($4.99/bag on common)

11. Mushroom Bourguignon

Portobello mushrooms are the right, cheaper, extra nutritious various to beef. Elevate them much more in this traditional mushroom bourguignon that tastes sluggish cooked, however comes collectively far more shortly than its unique namesake. French freezer meals? Wholesome indulgence at its best.

Servings: 4

Foremost Ingredient: Mushrooms ($4.40/pound on common)

12. Spiced Chickpea Stew With Coconut and Tumeric

This Alison Roman unique recipe went web viral in 2020 for good motive. Not solely is it wealthy with flavorful, anti-inflammatory substances (hello once more, turmeric and ginger), nevertheless it calls for cheap pantry substances like chickpeas and coconut milk, making it simple to make at any time. Freeze leftovers or the entire batch and indulge on this hearty stew when the craving hits.

Servings: 4-6

Foremost Elements: Chickpeas ($0.99/can on common), coconut milk ($2.29/can on common), kale ($2.79/bunch on common)

Resolve which of those wholesome freezer meals you need to make? Take a look at these tricks to stretch your freezer meals ever extra.

1. Label your frozen meals.

Ever put one thing within the freezer solely to query what it was? At all times label your meals with the date that you just made it and its contents. Not solely will this enable you get dinner on the desk quicker, however it’ll additionally stop you from throwing unknown contents out. Unsure how lengthy you’ll be able to freeze one thing for? Examine this out to study extra!

2. Portion out your freezer meals.

Whether or not you’re cooking for a household of 5 or simply for your self, pre-portioning your freezer meals as wanted beforehand is usually a lifesaver. Relatively than defrost the whole dish, pull out the variety of serving you want!

3. Use correct storage supplies.

At all times make the most of official freezer luggage, plastic wrap, and freezer secure tupperware when freezing meals to protect high quality and freshness. Nothing is worse than going by all of the work of making a meal solely to have it succumb to freezer burn!

4. Settle down your meals earlier than you freeze it. 

By no means put sizzling meals into the freezer. You should definitely enable your meals to chill down first earlier than packaging it up.

Contributor Michele Becker is a Boston based mostly author who focuses on meals, in addition to Italian journey and historical past.

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