3 Easy Postpartum Freezer Meals

Our new baby is set to make his debut next week. To get ready for the postpartum phase, I prepared three meals to have on-hand in the freezer: chili, chicken tortilla soup, and chicken enchiladas. It only took about an hour and a half to prepare all three of them, and I moved at a pretty leisurely pace.

Rather than cooking the chili and soup and then freezing them to reheat, I decided to prepare and freeze most of the ingredients. There will be some light assembly on the day we cook them—we’ll need to add liquid and seasoning. But I would much rather open a can of tomato sauce than have to defrost a big block of it. Plus, we’ll get to enjoy the cozy aroma of Crock-Pot cooking all day.

To make things as easy as possible, I labeled each container with the name of the meal, as well as assembly and cooking directions. That way, if I’m in charge of preparing them, I won’t forget anything in the postpartum brain fog. And if my husband is in charge of the prep, he won’t have to ask for the details. It will all be simple, straightforward, and scrumptious!

Crock-Pot Chili

Ingredients

For the freezer bag

  • 1 lb ground turkey, browned (You could also use ground beef.)
  • 1 can chili beans
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • Optional: 1 small red onion, chopped (I forgot to add the onion this time! But I’ve made this chili without it before, and it still tasted great.)

For the day of cooking

  • 1 29-oz. can tomato sauce
  • Seasoning: 1 packet of chili seasoning OR 2 tbsp of chili powder (I don’t usually measure the chili powder, so this is an estimate—season to your liking.)

Directions

1. Label a gallon-size freezer bag.

2. Brown the ground turkey and set aside to cool.

3. Chop the bell pepper and onion. Drain and rinse black beans, kidney beans, and corn. Do NOT drain the chili beans, since they bring flavorful sauce with them.

4. Layer the above ingredients in the freezer bag. Lay flat and freeze until ready to use.

5. On the day of cooking, dump the contents of the bag into the Crock-Pot. Add tomato sauce and seasoning. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for about 4 hours.

6. Stir, serve, and enjoy! We like to top our chili with shredded cheddar cheese and serve it with a side of cornbread. But it also pairs well with a hearty whole-grain loaf, buttered and toasted in the oven. Or, if you want to try something new, serve it with cinnamon rolls—yes, really. I first encountered that unlikely combination while living in Wyoming, and as strange as it sounds, it works!

Note: I like to rinse the tomato sauce can with a bit of water, and then add that water (about 1/4 can) to the chili. That way, I get all the sauce out of the can, and it thins out the chili just a little bit. It all depends on how thick you like your chili!

Crock-Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup

Ingredients

For the freezer bag

  • 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 1 chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 cans of corn
  • 2 cans of black beans

For the day of cooking

  • 1 46-oz. can tomato juice (You can also use vegetable juice.)
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • Tortilla chips—about 2 generous handfuls

Directions

1. Label a gallon-size freezer bag.

2. Using your hands, shred the meat of one rotisserie chicken.

3. Chop the bell pepper. Drain and rinse beans and corn.

4. Layer the above ingredients in the freezer bag. Lay flat and freeze until ready to use.

5. On the day of cooking, dump the contents of the bag into the Crock-Pot. Add tomato juice, seasoning, and about 2 generous handfuls of tortilla chips. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for about 4 hours.

6. Stir, serve, and enjoy! We like to top ours with more tortilla chips and some shredded cheddar cheese.

Chicken Enchiladas

These are SO delicious and SO easy! But I can’t take credit for this recipe—it comes from my college friend Tiffany over at 3 Spoons of Butter. I used a different cheese combination, but other than that, I followed her directions. (Get the recipe here!)

With these three meals, a lasagna a friend made us, and some frozen finds from Costco, we are stocked up and ready!

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