PDA

View Full Version : looking for casserole recipes that are good to freeze & bake



Mariam
02-03-2014, 06:19 PM
I have never been one to use casseroles and I am thinking that I want to expand from using my crock-pot for make-ahead meals (which I use extensively). There are no dietary restrictions in our family and I am looking for ideas that are good to prepare and freeze in advance and then bake at dinner time. I looked a Pinterest and Googled it, but I was overwhelmed by recipes. I am just looking for a few good, foolproof ideas to get started. Thanks!

hockeymom
02-03-2014, 06:34 PM
How about lasagna?

Sorry, that's all I've got.

Avalon
02-03-2014, 06:48 PM
Chicken Pot Pie & Shepherd's Pie both freeze & re-heat very well.

Meatballs can be frozen raw or baked and re-heated.

My mother-in-law makes mini quiches with Bisquick that freeze very well. I don't think regular quiche would work, but the bisquick variety does fine.

I also freeze home-made spaghetti sauce, and ground beef that's been browned with onions so I can toss it into anything.

ejsmom
02-03-2014, 07:50 PM
Chicken, wild (or brown) rice, broccoli, and water chestnuts (and or bamboo shoots) layered with shredded (sharp cheddar, usually) cheese and a "sauce" that I vary every time (we can't use traditional canned cream soups but if you can start with a cream of chicken, mushroom, or celery), or I use a bit of cream cheese or 1/2 cup of mayo or sour cream, thinned with milk, with some Dijon mustard, white wine and lemon juice and celery seed, curry, pepper, whatever appeals. I've used green beans in place of broccoli.

I make a mess of frozen casseroles to take with us when we rent a beach condo, usually the above, lasagna or some sort of beef/onion/garlic/sauce pasta/cheese mixture, plus I freeze chili and ham and bean soup.

farrarwilliams
02-03-2014, 07:54 PM
Macaroni and cheese, lasagna, baked ziti, and stuffed shells are all good make ahead pasta dishes.

Soups and stews mostly do well in the freezer.

And... I know there are other things, but those are the only ones I've ever done. I'd look for a good make ahead cookbook maybe.

Mariam
02-03-2014, 08:19 PM
Chicken Pot Pie & Shepherd's Pie both freeze & re-heat very well.

Meatballs can be frozen raw or baked and re-heated.

My mother-in-law makes mini quiches with Bisquick that freeze very well. I don't think regular quiche would work, but the bisquick variety does fine.

I also freeze home-made spaghetti sauce, and ground beef that's been browned with onions so I can toss it into anything.

Oh, I didn't think about pot-pies. That is a good idea. I make and freeze a variety of soups, stews, and sauces. Yes, the meatballs do freeze well and make good meatball sandwiches.

Mariam
02-03-2014, 08:21 PM
Chicken, wild (or brown) rice, broccoli, and water chestnuts (and or bamboo shoots) layered with shredded (sharp cheddar, usually) cheese and a "sauce" that I vary every time (we can't use traditional canned cream soups but if you can start with a cream of chicken, mushroom, or celery), or I use a bit of cream cheese or 1/2 cup of mayo or sour cream, thinned with milk, with some Dijon mustard, white wine and lemon juice and celery seed, curry, pepper, whatever appeals. I've used green beans in place of broccoli.

I make a mess of frozen casseroles to take with us when we rent a beach condo, usually the above, lasagna or some sort of beef/onion/garlic/sauce pasta/cheese mixture, plus I freeze chili and ham and bean soup.

This sounds really mix-n-match. (I keep thinking, pick an item from each column.) Sounds like a good base to start from.

Crabby Lioness
02-03-2014, 09:53 PM
Back in the late-60s - early-70s when frozen dinners were rare, quiche was the go-to bake-and-freeze casserole. A piece of advice given to brides of that time was that "The secret to a happy marriage is to bake a freeze half a dozen quiches at a time."

ejsmom
02-04-2014, 04:40 PM
Mariam, I had never looked at it that way, but that is a great idea to make casserole building easy. I guess that is what I really am doing, just by winging it with what I have on hand.

Look what I found when I did a search:

http://www.uvm.edu/extension/family/h1n1/Create_your_own_Casserole.pdf

And quiches are a great idea! They reheat beautifully. If you are gluten free you can use shredded potatoes. I've even used shredded sweet potatoes, but browned a bit under the broiler before filling so they are a bit crunchy, not soggy. I make quiches the day before when I host a brunch, because I can make 3 different kinds and then just have to heat up in the morning. Put out some fruit salad, mimosas and coffee, and it's brunch. Serve with crusty bread and salad in the evening - dinner. Very flexible. You all are making me hungry!

RTB
02-04-2014, 06:02 PM
Not a recipe, but a tip. You may already be doing this but, one of my friends puts the casserole in her baking dish lined with plastic wrap and freezes it, then pops it out once frozen, wraps it up, and writes which dish it needs to be baked in.

Ryan
02-04-2014, 07:02 PM
Chili freezes and reheats beautifully, turkey soup, beef stew. some vegetable stews dont do so good because the veggies can become mushy in my experience. usually I make and freeze the separate ingredients so I cna just throw them into a pot for a quick easy dinner

Mariam
02-05-2014, 12:07 AM
Mariam, I had never looked at it that way, but that is a great idea to make casserole building easy. I guess that is what I really am doing, just by winging it with what I have on hand.

Look what I found when I did a search:

http://www.uvm.edu/extension/family/h1n1/Create_your_own_Casserole.pdf



ejsmom, That chart is awesome! I was thinking that exact thing when I was reading your post.

I have one question, do you use fresh/frozen vegetables? They suggest using canned, which I have some, but I was thinking it would be a good way to use up fresh vegetable or when they are on sale at the market.

Crabby Lioness
02-05-2014, 12:17 AM
This sounds really mix-n-match. (I keep thinking, pick an item from each column.) Sounds like a good base to start from.

I actually have one of those that was developed by a homeless shelter:

The St. Micheal's Catholic Church of Gainesville Invent-Your-Own Casserole
(Published in The 1996 SLCB)

Choose 1 Sauce Maker:
1 10.75 oz can cream soup, undiluted
2 14.5 oz dans diced tomatoes, undrained

Choose 1 Protein Source:
2 6oz cans tuna, drained & flaked
2c chopped cooked chicken, ham, or turkey
1lb ground meat, browned & drained

Choose 1 Starch:

2c uncooked macaroni
1c uncooked rice
4c uncooked wide egg noodles
3c uncooked medium shells

Choose 1 or 2 Toppings:
1/2c shredded cheese or fine dry breadcrumbs

Choose 1 Vegetable:
1 10oz package of frozen chopped spinach, cut broccoli, Italian green beens, English peas, or sliced yellow squash
1 16oz can whole kernel corn, drained

Choose 1 or more Extras (optional):
1 3oz can mushrooms, drained; or chopped green chilis
1/4c sliced olives, chopped onion, or chopped celery
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1.25oz envelope taco seasoning mix

Combine 1c sour cream, 1c milk, 1c water, 1t salt, and 1t black pepper with Sauce Maker (omit sour cream & milk if using tomatoes). Stir in Starch, Vegetables, Protein, & (optional) Extras.

Spoon into a lightly greased 13" x 9" x2" baking dish; sprinkle with Topping(s).

Cover & bake at 350F for 1 hour 10 minutes, uncover & bake 10 more minutes. Serves 6.

Samples:

Chicken -- cream of chicken soup, broccoli, rice, chicken, Parmesan cheese & breadcrumbs.

Ham -- cream of celery soup, green beans, wide egg noodles, ham, garlic & 2 portions Swiss cheese.

Turkey -- diced tomatoes, spinach, pasta shells, turkey, onion, garlic, mozzarella cheese & breadcrumbs.

Vegetarian -- tomatoes, squash, rice, olives, 4 portions celery, 4 portions sweet peppers, garlic, Parmesan cheese & breadcrumbs.

Variation: leave off Topping until last 10 minutes.

I've never used it, but it's too impressive not to keep it around.

ejsmom
02-05-2014, 03:26 PM
I usually use fresh or frozen veggies, not canned. We really try to do organic and non-GMO, so
that determines whether fresh or frozen. I can't get stuff fresh sometimes. DH works practically on top of the main farmer's market in the heart of Lancaster County PA (Amish Country), and farm stands are everywhere in central Pa, so in season, fresh is easy to get here.

kidsx2
02-05-2014, 03:48 PM
We love Taco Soup (I use Paula Deen's recipe) - I don't always use all the meat she calls for, and sometimes include black beans instead of meat to make it vegetarian.
I also love a Taco casserole that is so easy - brown 1lb ground beef, drain and add 1 cup water, pkg of taco seasoning and 4oz cream cheese. Mix that all up and add 8 oz of cooked pasta (penne, rotini, etc). Add a couple of handfuls of shredded cheese and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes. I have not frozen this, but I am sure it would freeze well.
Pinterest has some great recipes!!

Crabby Lioness
02-05-2014, 04:25 PM
I generally substitute beans or such for half the meat in a casserole.

Mariam
02-06-2014, 08:18 PM
I actually have one of those that was developed by a homeless shelter:

The St. Micheal's Catholic Church of Gainesville Invent-Your-Own Casserole
(Published in The 1996 SLCB)
...
I've never used it, but it's too impressive not to keep it around.

Oh, I like this. I will have to see how I can make this work. Thanks!

Crabby Lioness
02-06-2014, 09:37 PM
Speaking of quiche and cream soups, I found out that you if you substitute leftover homemade cream soup for part of the milk/cream in a quiche, the result is fabulous. Win-win!

ejsmom
02-06-2014, 10:43 PM
Crabby - that is an amazing idea! I would have never thought of that! I can't wait to try it. I will have to make quiche this weekend.

Crabby Lioness
02-06-2014, 11:44 PM
Crabby - that is an amazing idea! I would have never thought of that! I can't wait to try it. I will have to make quiche this weekend.

Hey, necessity -> invention.

ikslo
02-06-2014, 11:57 PM
Crabby - that is an amazing idea! I would have never thought of that! I can't wait to try it. I will have to make quiche this weekend.

I miss eggs. :(

ejsmom
02-07-2014, 06:15 PM
ikso, can you use egg replacer in quiche?

ikslo
02-07-2014, 08:03 PM
I think last time we went looking there were other ingredients in the replacers that DS was also allergic to so it was a no go. That was a few years ago, so it may be worth looking into again. DH does the shopping. I should ask him to check it out.

ejsmom
02-07-2014, 09:04 PM
OMG, so envious that your DH does the shopping! Mine will run for a few things, but spends $100 and gets nothing but snacks. And 3/4 of what he gets DS can't eat. He's always "I read the label, how did I miss that?". If I make a VERY specific list with brands, sometimes he'll be ok. He does work by Central Market and get produce and herbs and teas and meats though, so I will be grateful for that much!

ikslo
02-07-2014, 09:14 PM
He likes to control the spending (I'm a bit like your DH), and I abhor grocery stores and rude shoppers. DH started when DS was born and it just sort of morphed from there. And it works out since I work days and then do most of the homeschooling, and he works 2nd shift. He goes before work, and sometimes stops after work to pick up a few things here and there. It used to bother me, so he let me do the shopping one Saturday. I hadn't been food shopping in like 4 years. Let's just say I'm now perfectly happy letting him do the shopping. I put stuff on a list, and (most of the time) it magically appears within a day or two. :) Yup. I am S P O I L E D.

BerthaCardone
08-21-2014, 03:55 AM
You can make Classic Lasagna and Baked Mac & Cheese, it is a healthy weeknight dinner and also freezer friendly. For making casserole first of all mix all ingredients you are using for example, potato, meat, egg, vegetables, etc. Bland them well, then Sautee the ingredients and combine in a greased casserole dish. Bake, covered maximum time while cooking, then Uncover the casserole and add the topping.