Tis' the season to be jolly! Right?! Well due to a big freelance project, and all the demands of the season, I'm finding myself a little more frazzled than festive. But, I decided to change that today. I've been hearing a lot about this "freezer meal" concept for months now. Mostly from friends who are expecting, and trying to make life after the baby arrives a little easier. I always thought, "I'll look into that more when we are closer to travel for our second one." Now, I really enjoy cooking. I love to be in the kitchen. I love to try new meals. But let's be honest... it's time consuming. And time is something I am just a wee bit short on these days.

So in what was truly an "aha!" moment today, I realized I might be able to help myself out a little. A quick search brought me to this link for 8 Slow Cooker Freezer Meals that could be made it one hour. I read through it quickly and thought, "I can handle that!" I decided to make four of the meals they included: The BBQ Spareribs, the Black Bean Taco Soup, the Chicken Broccoli Alfredo, and the Maple Dijon Chicken. I added the necessary ingredients to my shopping list, as well as sides that would work with each meal.  {It should be noted that I tend not to use a lot of canned or bottled items in our normal cooking routines, but since these meals were meant to "pinch hit" for me here and there throughout the season, I'm not going to have too much guilt about it. I also bought the highest quality I could, and organic if possible.}

While tonight's dinner was baking in the oven, I threw these together. And yes... "threw" is absolutely the right word to use here. Some of the meals were as simple as dump, dump, dump... and DONE! The most intensive one was the Black Bean Taco Soup since you had to brown the beef and onion, then let it cool before adding it to the bag. (I browned the beef and onion, then went on to make the rest of the meals while it cooled to keep my time down.) I would say that it took me forty minutes to make these four meals. I'm already feeling a little less frazzled knowing I have these in the freezer!

Now, the true test will come when we actually eat these meals... but I'm optimistic that it will help out a ton with all we have going on. And it keeps us from the plentiful take-out and fast food places that can easily lure you in during the rushing around that seems to happen this season.

Have you tried this "freezer meal" concept? Has it worked for your family?