My Frugal Freezer Basics-Part 1

Frugal freezer basics, using bulk ground beef and rotisserie chickens to fill your freezer and make meal prep quick and easy on busy nights

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My Frugal Freezer Cooking Basics-Part 1

Today I am sharing my favorite frugal freezer basics with you.  My husband and I went to Walmart and we bought 10 pounds of ground beef for $18.00.  I also found 2 rotisserie chickens on sale for $2.96 each.  Woo-hoo!!!!   I’m going to show you how I break these down for my basic cooking, and stock my freezer.

Let’s start with the beef.  It comes in log form.

I cut the log in half.  The first 5 pounds I break up into my Crock-Pot  with one large onion, chopped, and a little black pepper.

I cook it on low for around 4 hours, stirring every hour, until browned.

I drain the beef really well and let it cool a bit.

When it’s cool, I split it into 2 quart size freezer bags.  You can make 4 bags with approximately 1 pound in each also.

I use these to save time for any recipe that calls for browning beef.  Add taco seasoning for quick tacos, add to pasta sauce, use for chili on a busy night.   The possibilities are endless.

The remaining 5 pounds I split into 3 bags.  2 bags with 2 pounds each, and a 1 pound bag.  I flatten these as much as possible, making them fit better in the freezer and they defrost much quicker.

Now let’s tackle the chicken.  I cut each chicken up and cube the meat.  This goes into a quart size freezer bag for recipes or a quick soup.

I put the carcasses in a large stock pot, add an onion, a few carrots, and some celery.   I actually save my veggie scraps in a bag in the freezer, and use them when I make my broth.  Cover with water and bring to a boil.

Turn it down, and let it simmer until you get a nice golden broth.   It will be fatty on top, but we are going to take care of that.

Drain the contents into another large pot, let cool.  I pick through the colander for good meat.  This time I got almost 2 cups worth, that I used for chicken salad.

When the soup cools down, the fat will float to the top and solidify, making it easy to remove.

For freezing, I measured 32 ounces (the size of a box of broth in stores).  I pour the broth into ice cube trays, filling 2 trays.  Repeat with remaining broth.  Refrigerate leftover broth until you can repeat the fill/freeze process.   I freeze into cube form for 2 reasons.  First, the cubes melt quicker when making soup, the second reason is, I can grab a few cubes if needed for a cup of broth when someone is sick.  I’m a mom, and always think ahead, especially this time of year.

When the cubes are frozen, I place 2 trays of cubes in a gallon size freezer bag, in a single layer.  With this batch I ended up with 4 bags, equaling 128 ounces..  In my area, a box of broth can cost $2.50 or more, they are bland and usually filled with sodium.  I am saving money, with a much tastier and healthier broth.

I hope you can use some of these money saving tips.


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