Stuffed Bell Peppers (Freezer Cooking Meal)

Stuffed Bell Peppers

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I will be posting 10 Days of Freezer Meal Recipes and today is Day 6! See more Freezer Recipes HERE and be sure to read my Easy Tips to Freezer Meal Cooking/Planning post here to get started!

With Spring here and Summer gardening already on the horizon I can’t help but look forward to the bounty of bell peppers we will grow and an abundance of these easy and tasty Stuffed Bell Peppers cropping up on our dinner plates.  This came to be in what I like to refer to a “clean out the fridge night” where I had just a little pasta sauce, rice and ground meat to do something with and an excess of fresh bell peppers from our garden.  What came about has since been fine tuned into what our family loves and asks for routinely.  Make ahead and freeze for simple freezer to oven meals that are filling and help use up that excess of fresh produce.

If making large batches to freeze, allow to cool completely and warp each pepper in plastic wrap then aluminum foil to keep fresh for up to 4 months in freezer.  Add an extra 25-30 minutes to cook time if pulling from freezer to oven for perfectly cooked stuffed peppers any week night.

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Ingredients:

  • 6 Large Green Bell Peppers
  • 1 Pound Ground Turkey or Ground Beef
  • 2 Cups Cooked White or Brown Rice
  • 1 Can Diced Stewed Tomatoes
  • 1 Cup Tomato Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Italian Seasoning Blend
  • 1 Cup Shredded Cheddar

Directions:

  1. Slice tops off bell peppers and clean inside removing membranes and seeds but leaving pepper intact.  Set aside.
  2. In large stockpot, cook ground beef until no longer pink and heated through.
  3. Add in rice, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and Italian Seasoning blend.
  4. Mix together and heat on high for 4-5 minutes. 2.jpg
  5. Spray large casserole dish with non stick spray and preheat oven to 350 degrees
  6. Place bell peppers in casserole dish and scoop rice/meat mixture into each pepper until full. 3.jpg
  7. Sprinkle tops with cheese
  8. May use toothpicks inserted in sides as “legs” to help stabilize bell peppers as needed.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes

These bell peppers will soften as they bake and the wonderful filling will seep flavors into the peppers giving them a nice sweet taste that even the kids will enjoy.  Stuffed Bell Peppers are a classic paupers meal that is hearty and inexpensive to make but beautiful enough to present to guests.

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Green Chili Lime Chicken Enchiladas (Freezer Cooking Meal)

Green Chili Lime Chicken Enchiladas

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We love Mexican inspired dishes and these Green Chili Lime Chicken Enchiladas are one of our favorite meals with it’s mild yet flavorful blend of  spices and creamy sauce.  This one is a favorite for the kids and adults alike since it is cheesy, creamy and simple to assemble.  I prefer to make the chicken mixture ahead in bulk and assemble my enchiladas right before meal time if I am making this into a freezer meal, but others may prefer the easy freezer to oven method of making the enchiladas ahead where you can simply pop directly from your freezer right into your oven.

I will be posting 10 Days of Freezer Meal Recipes and today is Day 2! See moreFreezer Recipes HERE and be sure to read my Easy Tips to Freezer Meal Cooking/Planning post here to get started.

Green Lime Chili Chicken Enchiladas

Ingredients:

  • 1 Pound Shredded Chicken Breasts
  • 12 Medium Flour Tortillas
  • 16 oz. Sour Cream
  • 3 Teaspoons Minced Garlic
  • 6 Green Onions Chopped
  • ½ Cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro
  • 1 Can Diced Green Chilis
  • Juice & Zest of 1 Lime
  • 1 Tablespoon Cumin
  • 2 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese (you can also add mozzarella)
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Spray casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Mix together chicken, green chilis, 1 cup cheese, sour cream, garlic, onions, cilantro, lime and cumin.
  4. Taste mixture and add salt & pepper as desired (I typically add 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of each but some prefer a bit less or more) 2.jpg
  5. Scoop approximately 2 tablespoons of chicken mixture into center of each tortilla.
  6. Top with sprinkle of shredded cheese (make sure to reserve ½ cup for top of enchiladas)
  7. Roll tortilla and place seam side down in casserole dish
  8. Sprinkle tops with remaining shredded cheese 1.jpg
  9. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes

These Green Chili Lime Chicken Enchiladas are one of our favorite easy meals to throw together.  If you prefer a no fuss easy weeknight meal, mix together this chicken filling and assemble enchiladas in a disposable aluminum pan and freeze for up to 4 months.  Label appropriately and pop straight from freezer to oven to cook at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour or until cooked through and cheese melted.  So simple, so tasty and sophisticated enough to serve to guests at your next dinner party.

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Chicken Cordon Bleu Roll Up (Freezer Cooking Meal)

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I will be posting 10 Days of Freezer Meal Recipes and today is Day 1! See more Freezer Recipes HERE and be sure to read my Easy Tips to Freezer Meal Cooking/Planning post here to get started.

One of my all time favorite meals to make when company is coming over are these Easy Chicken Cordon Bleu Roll Ups.  Not only do they offer the great classic flavor combination you expect, they are simple to make and present beautifully.  This is a great meal to make ahead and freeze for easy to reheat entrees alongside some rice and steamed vegetables that will be perfect to impress the last minute guests.  I especially love making these when I happen to get a great deal on chicken on sale and want to prep it before freezing.  Make ahead and cook to only have to pop in the oven to reheat or roll them up before freezing raw to cook at the last minute for a tasty meal.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Roll Up

Ingredients:

  • 3 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts (cut in half and pounded to 1/4” thick)
  • 6 Slices Ham
  • 6 Swiss Cheese Slices
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • ½ Teaspoon Paprika
  • ½ Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • ¼ Cup All Purpose Flour
  • ¼ Cup Italian Seasoned Bread Crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

Sauce:

  • 1 Stick Unsalted Butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Cornstarch
  • 2 Chicken Bouillon Cubes
  • ¼ Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • ½ Cup White Wine
  • 1 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Spray small casserole dish with nonstick spray and set aside.
  3. Lightly season each chicken breast half with salt, pepper, paprika and garlic powder on both sides.
  4. Place 1 slice cheese and ham on each chicken breast half 1.png
  5. Roll and insert toothpicks to hold in place
  6. Mix flour and bread crumbs together in small bowl
  7. Roll each chicken roll up into bread crumb mixture coating all sides lightly
  8. Heat olive oil in medium skillet
  9. Cook each roll up in oil for 2-3 minutes on each side turning to brown evenly
  10. Place roll up in pre-sprayed casserole dish and place in oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes to complete cooking.  Set skillet aside to make sauce in.
  11. Remove from oven and allow to rest while you make sauce.

Sauce:

  1. In skillet that chicken was browned in, heat butter and cornstarch together with remaining oil from cooking chicken.  This mixture should form a loose paste.
  2. Add in bouillon cubes, garlic powder and white wine
  3. Cook for 4-5 minutes stirring constantly scraping pan to provide ultimate flavor to sauce
  4. Stir in heavy cream and cook for additional 6-7 minutes on low heat.
  5. Drizzle sauce over sliced chicken roll ups.

To reheat from freezer: 

If you choose to make these Chicken Cordon Bleu Roll Ups to freeze ahead, the sauce can be made prior to serving, I do not recommend freezing the sauce for reheating.  The extra flavor from using the skillet the chicken was cooked in is nice to have but not necessary for a wonderful creamy white wine sauce.

If making ahead and freezing you can easily assemble and freeze to be cooked stopping before rolling in bread crumb mixture or cook through and freeze once cooled after removing from oven.  Regardless of which method you choose, you will find this to be one of those meals that leaves your family satisfied and praising what a great cook you are.

 

Easy Savory Meatballs ~ Versatile for Any Meal!

Easy Savory Meatballs

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Meatballs Aren’t Just for Pasta!

Easy Savory Meatballs are something that you don’t think about making yourself, but they are so easy, you’ll wonder why you never did.  I make up large batches of meatballs and then freeze them uncooked, making it easy to put them in pasta sauce, bake and slice on pizzas, or top them with some pizza sauce in a hoagie roll.  It’s amazing what you can do with a bag full of frozen meatballs!

Make The Meatballs What You Want

The basic ingredients for meatballs is easy: ground meat, eggs, breadcrumbs, and seasonings.  Seasonings can change, depending on what you want the meatballs to taste like, or what their purpose is.  I usually make mine Italian style, as in this recipe, but you can change them up to be anything you like.  Add some steak seasoning for a barbecue meatball, or chopped pineapple and a bit of brown sugar for teriyaki style.  Really, you can do anything with them once you know the basics.

Basic Recipe for Meatballs: Multiply It!

We’ll go over what it takes for a single pound of ground meat, but you can multiply it for as many pounds as you want to make!  If you want to make ten pounds of meatballs, multiply everything by 10 and mix away!  Use this as a very basic recipe to make whatever your needs are.  Just realize the higher the fat content of your meat, the more they will shrink and add fat to your dish.

Easy Savory Meatballs ~ Versatile for Any Meal!

Easy Savory Meatballs ~ Versatile for Any Meal!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground meat (beef, pork, veal)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 C breadcrumbs
  • 1 t dried oregano
  • 1 t dried parsley
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/4 t pepper

Instructions

  1. Mix the seasonings, meat, and egg in a bowl until completely incorporated
  2. Add the breadcrumbs and mix well.
  3. With damp hands, form meatballs by squeezing about 2 tablespoons of meat (or whatever your preference for size) together, then roll in your hands to form a ball.
  4. Place on a wax paper covered baking tray. Continue with meat mixture until all the meatballs are made.
  5. Freeze until solid.
  6. Place in a plastic zippy bag or freezer container and place back in the freezer until use.
  7. To cook, fry in a bit of olive oil or bake on a baking sheet in a 400 degree F oven until baked through.
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Easy Savory Meatballs as a Quick Meal

I keep a bag or two of tasty meatballs in the freezer for those quick meals that need some meat.  Use them every way you can think of for a delicious addition.  Make them small for appetizers in your Crock-Pot.  Bake them up before dropping them in with some sauce and turning it on low for an amazing treat everyone will love!

 

1 lb ground meat (beef, pork, veal)

1 egg

1/4 C breadcrumbs

1 t dried oregano

1 t dried parsley

1/2 t salt

1/4 t pepper

 

Mix the seasonings, meat, and egg in a bowl until completely incorporated

Add the breadcrumbs and mix well.

With damp hands, form meatballs by squeezing about 2 tablespoons of meat (or whatever your preference for size) together, then roll in your hands to form a ball.

Place on a wax paper covered baking tray.  Continue with meat mixture until all the meatballs are made.

Freeze until solid.

Place in a plastic zippy bag or freezer container and place back in the freezer until use.

To cook, fry in a bit of olive oil or bake on a baking sheet in a 400 degree F oven until baked through.

 

Easy Savory Meatballs are a versatile addition to any meal.  Keep some meatballs in your freezer!