Twice this year I've been able to make a bunch of freezer meals with friends. I've been picking out recipes for this so I was looking for some more options. I can across this site in my search and thought that the freezer recipes sound delicious! They have healthy ingredients and look easy to put together...and cheap too! After reading through this post on eight crockpot means in 35 minutes, I decided to try one before recommending them to my friends. It was outstanding. However I can't make a recipe as is, so I made some minor changes.
The Italian chicken smelled so good while it was cooking! As I was putting it together I was thinking it would be chicken in a sauce so I was planning on having it over pasta. About an hour and a half from dinnertime I took a look in the crockpot and it wasn't a saucy as I would have liked. So I grabbed a can of tomato paste and added it. This made it more of a sauce that I was wanting. The addition of the bell pepper and the mushroom also help make it more saucy. I served the whole chicken breast over elbow pasta. A small side salad would round the meal out nicely.
Here's how I changed it up:
Chicken breasts, one for each person eating or who you want leftovers for (I did five and had plenty of sauce for each.
28 oz of diced tomatoes (one big can or two small)
1/2 cup honey
1 6oz can of tomato paste
1 small onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 carton of mushrooms (optional- I put them through a manual food processor cause my toddler won't eat big pieces of mushroom but will eat them when they are small and she can't pick them out!)
4 garlic cloves, diced
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp parsley (I was out of dried so I used fresh and it was still good)
Salt & Pepper to taste
fresh basil, to put on top when serving (option)
Your favorite pasta or whatever you have in the house
I like to add everything but the basil, pasta and chicken into the crockpot and mix it all up. Then I like to add the chicken and push it down so it's covered in the sauce while cooking. Cook on low for 5-6 hours or high for 3-4 hours. When you're ready to eat, make the pasta according to the instructions on the box (or bag.) I place some pasta in the bowl and topped it with a piece of chicken and some sauce. Top it with fresh basil. I just had the thought that topping it with some shredded cheese would be super yummy too.
If you want to make a freezer meal, she has the instructions on the recipe page. Basically toss everything in a gallon zip lock bag and lay it flat in your freezer. Take it out the day before and defrost in your fridge until you're ready to throw it in your crockpot. Or if you're like me, wait till noon and decide to to a freezer crockpot meal and defrost it in the microwave just enough to get it out of the bag. Toss it in the crockpot on high and eat whenever it's done, hopefully before 8 pm.
In case you're wondering, it was toddler and baby (and baby led weaning) friendly. Both kiddos gobbled it up. This made it on the list of recipes we're making at our next round of freezer meals AND on my personal list of recipes.
I really, really think you should go check out the site and try her recipes, I don't think you'll be disappointed! She even has made shopping lists to make it super easy for you. Seriously, go check it out!