Video: Freezer Meals! Healthy Meal Prep – Freezer Dinners! – Mind Over Munch
Tonight on Mind Over Munch Investigates: Slim Dins. Clean Cuisine. Wholesome Choice? What’s really in that Slim Din? How “clean” is your frozen cuisine? Is it a “wholesome” choice? We’re exposing the latest and greatest in fuel-filled freezer meals: DIY Frozen Dinners, Tonight, on Mind Over Munch Investigates. Stay with us. Hey, Munchies! Welcome if you’re new, I’m Alyssia, and I’m so excited because summer is here! One of my favorite things about summer is how many great seasonal ingredients we have available, so I thought I’d do a summer seasonal themed meal prep video— but today we’re switching things up because I’m actually going to share three FROZEN DINNERS! The beauty of these is we use seasonal ingredients and freeze them, so you can enjoy those ingredients later even when they aren’t in season! All you have to do is heat up the meals and you’ve got your meal ready to go! Let’s get to it.
The first meal is a BBQ Berry Chicken with Bacon Potatoes & Roasted Veggies and it is a SHEET PAN dish, which I know you guys like from the episode of all one pan dinners I shared not too long ago! I tried to compose each dinner with a protein, grain or starch and vegetable. For the protein we’re making a BBQ Berry Chicken. I’m starting off with some fresh blackberries and blueberries in a pot. We’re pretty much going to make a jam, which if you’ve never done before is REALLY easy. I’m adding a bit of lemon juice, and then really you’re just going to let that reduce down. Once the berries start to pop, you can mash them up, and then allow it to thicken! Then we can add our other ingredients for the barbecue sauce: ketchup, coconut or brown sugar, red wine vinegar, mustard powder, and an optional pinch of cayenne pepper. Stir 2 to 3 minutes to integrate. Now we can assemble our sheet pan! I’m laying my chicken breast and baby potatoes on one pan lined with parchment paper. I brush the chicken with with olive oil and add some to the potatoes, along with some chopped garlic, and season it all with salt and pepper before tossing the potatoes.
On the other pan, I’m adding asparagus and broccoli. I add olive oil, garlic, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt and pep. You can season yours however you’d like! Toss to coat. Both trays go into one oven preheated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. At about 20 minutes we’ll add some chopped turkey bacon (you could of course use regular), and fresh parsley to the potatoes. One tip for summer seasonal cooking is to use tons of herbs! They are so flavorful and fresh right now. Remember that seasonal ingredients are generally more affordable, too. We’ll also add some of our BBQ berry sauce all over the chicken breast. It all goes back into the oven for another 10-15 minutes, until the potatoes are crisp, veggies are roasted, and chicken is completely cooked through to 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
And there you go! A sheet pan dinner. This would be delicious now, but I’m saving it for later. I transfer it to my freezer-safe, microwave-safe, BPA-free container and we’re good to go! Freeze it for up to 3 months! When you’re ready to enjoy, thaw it out in the fridge the day before you’re going to eat it, and then microwave for 3 to 4 minutes until heated through. So good, couldn’t have been easier really, and I love all of the seasonal ingredients we were able to incorporate! Thumbs up if you want more ONE PAN dinners! Next up: a vegan meal inspired by Mexican flavors— Jalapeño Black Beans, Mexican Farro, and Cilantro Corn, Peas & Tomato Sauté! For the beans, we’re adding oil to a pan and sautéing some onions until tender. Then we can add in our garlic, Jalapeño, which you can remove the seeds if you want LESS heat, and cumin. Sauté 1 minute, until fragrant. Then we can add our drained and rinsed beans and stir for about 2 minutes, until heated through and integrated. Season to taste! For the Mexican Farro, we’re sautéing some garlic in olive oil until fragrant, just about a minute. Then we can add our farro, broth, water, diced tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, and salt and pep.
Bring that to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer, and then cook for about 40 minutes. If you haven’t heard of Farro, it’s an ancient wheat grain that has some great nutritional benefits. It’s high in protein, fiber, it’s heart healthy, and it’s high and nutrients like magnesium zinc, and iron. It has a bit of a nutty taste and is a nice way to switch up the more common healthy grains, like brown rice or quinoa! It also cooks just like most other grains. Once the liquid has reduced, stir in your green onions and fresh cilantro! Such a tasty dish! The fresh jalapeño adds SO much flavor, and it doesn’t NEED to be a spicy dish, either! For our final component of this meal: our veggie sauté. I’m sautéing some onion until tender, and then adding garlic until fragrant.
Then we can add our corn— now, you could use canned, but there’s so much wonderful FRESH corn this time of year, why not try it out? All you have to do is shuck the cob and remove the kernels. My favorite way is to put a small bowl upside down inside of a larger bowl, and use the bottom of that small bowl as stability to hold my corn. Then I can just run the knife down the side and let the kernels fall into the larger bowl! So easy. Add your fresh corn, fresh peas— which you COULD admittedly spend time removing individual peas from fresh pods, but I bought these peas already removed to make life easier, but they are still fresh. Cook that for about 3 to 5 minutes, until tender. Stir in some wonderful cherry and heirloom tomatoes, fresh basil, and season with salt and pep. Cook for another 3 minutes or so, until the tomatoes begin to soften. Then we can assemble our frozen dinner! So colorful, and perfect for meatless Monday! Remember, when produce is frozen it maintains it’s flavor and nutrition, so you don’t have to worry about losing out by making this sustainable! If you’re enjoying these DIY Frozen Dinners I hope you’ll subscribe and hit the bell for more content every week! Our last meal is another easy one: a ONE POT Hamburger Rice Pilaf with Grilled Zucchini! I’ve combined our grain and protein into one here! In a pot, I’m sautéing some onion and garlic.
Then I add bell pepper and allow that to soften a bit. Add your ground beef, and season with salt and pep. Once that’s about cooked through, add in your long grain brown rice and cook it for just a few minutes, until the rice starts to turn translucent. In a “pilaf,” the rice is often sautéed lightly before adding broth, so that’s what we’re doing here. Also, I should note that you can use any rice you prefer, just check out the package directions and adjust the time and amount of liquid. Then we can add our broth of choice, cover, bring to a boil, and simmer until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. To add some “hamburger” toppings, I’m stirring in some chopped spinach as lettuce, which will wilt right down so be liberal, as well as some amazing heirloom tomatoes. Fun fact: Heirloom tomatoes can provide more vitamins, minerals and antioxidants than commercially-grown tomatoes because commercially-grown are bred for size, color and hardiness rather than flavor and nutrition! They are also environmentally friendly because they are naturally pollinated and they have many varieties of bold, ripe flavors! I allow the heat to wilt the spinach and tomatoes to soften a bit.
For the grilled zucchini, you can of course use a grill, but I’m sharing a fun way to grill IF you don’t have a grill or simply don’t want to use it. Slice your zucchini around a quarter to a third of an inch thick. Combine olive oil, garlic paste, dried oregano, fresh dill, and salt and pep. Add it to your zucchini and toss to coat. You can use immediately, or marinate for a few hours or overnight if you want more flavor. Now the cool part—preheat a panini press to medium heat. Place the slices on the press, lower the top, and cook for about 3 to 5 minutes, until the zucchini have softened and you have your nice grill marks. Add your final meal to your preppable container, and I’ve linked all of the containers and equipment I used in the description, by the way. and you’re good to go! This dish also uses so many seasonal ingredients, but requires only 2 super simple recipes, which is the way I have to do healthy to keep it sustainable.
These DIY Frozen Dinners are a really fun way to meal prep, and remember, meal prepping doesn’t have to be prepping meals for the whole week or eating the same thing every day. You can make it suit YOUR lifestyle and preferences. I give a ton of information for efficient and effective meal prep in my meal prep eBook, and you can get 10% off any eBook or package of your choice this week only with the code “SUMMER” at mindovermunch.com/ebooks. Also, if you want to see me in a more casual setting, check out my second channel: Eat The Pizza! Where I make crazy-flavored pizzas and pizza-flavored things. It is not a health channel, but we do have some fun summer projects coming soon. I hope you enjoyed this seasonal episode! Let me know your favorite summer ingredients in the comments below! I’ll see you next week, and remember, it’s all a matter of Mind Over Munch!!.