Enjoy a wholesome homemade supper — even on your busiest weekdays — by stocking your freezer with Crock Pot dinners! In just 45 minutes you can prepare 6 Healthy Slow Cooker Freezer Meals to keep on hand for those nights when you need them most! This is the ultimate way to simplify your life…and I’ve even included my free printable shopping list.
It’s that time again! With Back to School season in full swing, I knew that I better prep ahead and stock my freezer with plenty of nutritious meals that I could turn to for those crazy evenings when I won’t have time to cook.
Are you familiar with Crock Pot freezer meals? Basically, all you do is toss some RAW ingredients into a large zip-top freezer bag, label it, and stick it in your freezer. When you’re ready to make your dinner, just thaw the bag in the refrigerator overnight and dump the contents into your slow cooker the next day. Let the Crock Pot do the cooking and dinner will be waiting for you when your troops are hungry!
For this particular batch of freezer meals, I selected 3 healthy slow cooker recipes that I knew my family would love. When I pull together freezer meal menus, I make a point to choose recipes that use a variety of meats and that offer a nice variety of meals. For instance, you don’t want to end up making 6 chicken dinners (boring!) or 6 different soups.
I printed the recipes and prepared a shopping list based on DOUBLING each recipe. That way I get two separate dinners with about the same amount of prep time.
You can download a printable PDF of the complete grocery shopping list HERE.
When I returned from the grocery store, I didn’t even bother to put away the food. Instead, I labeled my zip-top freezer bags (with the name of the recipe, plus the cooking instructions), chopped my veggies, and tossed the appropriate ingredients into each bag. I actually set my timer to see exactly how long it would take me to make all of these dinners and I was VERY pleasantly surprised to see that I was completely finished in 45 minutes (and that included a couple of interruptions from the little ones!). With a few more minutes of clean-up, my kitchen was spotless and my freezer was full in under 1 hour!
Here are the three meals that we will be enjoying in the coming weeks (and remember, I doubled each recipe for maximum efficiency!):
1. Slow Cooker Pork with Spiced Apples
A meal that’s perfect for a cool fall evening! Serve with a crusty loaf of bread and some steamed veggies for satisfying and nutritious dinner!
Slow Cooker Pork with Spiced Apples
- 1 (2 lb.) pork loin
- 4 large or 6 small apples (I like a combination of Granny Smith and Golden Delicious), peeled and sliced
- 1 tablespoon coconut palm sugar (or can substitute with brown sugar)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Season pork with salt and pepper. Spray slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Place pork in bottom of slow cooker. Top with apples, sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. Slice pork and serve with applesauce on top.
- FREEZER OPTION: Place sliced apples in a large zip-top bag. Sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger and toss to coat. Season pork with salt and pepper. Place pork in the bag on top of the apples. Squeeze all of the air out of the bag, seal, and place in the freezer. When ready to cook, thaw the bag in the refrigerator overnight. Spray a slow cooker with nonstick spray. Dump contents of the bag into the slow cooker (pork should be on the bottom with most of the apples on top). Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. Slice pork and serve with applesauce on top.
2. Slow Cooker Korean Beef
I love to make lettuce wraps with this beef, but my boys think it’s delicious rolled up in tortillas…taco style!
Slow Cooker Korean Beef
- 1 lb. extra lean ground beef (96 or 97% lean)*
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (omit for a mild dish)
- Whisk together all of the ingredients except for the beef.
- Place raw beef in slow cooker, breaking into chunks with a spoon or with your fingers. Pour sauce over the beef, toss, and cover. Cook on low for 3-4 hours.
- FREEZER OPTION: Place raw beef in a large zip-top bag and break apart into chunks with your fingers. Pour sauce over the beef, squeeze out the air from the bag, and freeze until ready to use. When ready to cook, thaw in refrigerator overnight. Then dump all of the ingredients into your slow cooker, cover, and cook on low for 3-4 hours.
- Serve beef with sauce in lettuce wraps, over rice, or in tortillas. Garnish with sliced green onion and/or sesame seeds if desired.
*Be sure to use extra lean beef in this recipe. Since you're putting raw meat into the slow cooker, you will not be draining the fat off after cooking. With the extra lean beef you won't have to worry about having too much fat left in your pot when it's done cooking!
3. Slow Cooker Chicken Pesto & Rice Soup
With veggies, protein, and grains included, this is the ultimate cozy one pot meal!
Slow Cooker Chicken Pesto and Rice Soup
- ¾ lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 3 ½ cups chicken broth
- 1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes (undrained)
- 1 cup celery, diced
- ½ cup diced onion
- ½ cup prepared pesto
- ½ cup uncooked long-grain brown rice
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Optional: Parmesan cheese for serving
- Add all ingredients to a 6-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours.*
- Remove chicken, shred or dice the meat, and return to the slow cooker. Serve in individual bowls and garnish with Parmesan cheese.
- FREEZER OPTION: Place all ingredients in a large zip-top bag. Squeeze all of the air out of the bag, seal, and place in the freezer until ready to use. When ready to cook, thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Dump all of the ingredients from the bag into a 6-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours.* Remove chicken, shred or dice the meat, and return to the slow cooker. Serve in individual bowls and garnish with Parmesan cheese.
*Depending on how hot your slow cooker runs, 4 hours may not be enough to fully cook the rice. It's safest to plan on at least 6 hours, but if you have a relatively cool Crock Pot it could take more like 6-8 hours.
And that’s it! I lay the bags flat to freeze them so that they don’t take up too much space. By doubling each of these delicious recipes, I’ve got 6 meals ready to go in a very short amount of time!
Interested in other healthy meal options? You can check out my Fast, Fresh & Fit! eCookbook HERE:
Or try some of my other freezer meals sessions: