The further I get into this pregnancy, the easier I need things to be.
My current obsession is freezer cooking.
Nothing feels any better than knowing that I’ve got a few meals tucked away for those nights where I just don’t have the energy to do much other than whine about how bad I feel and beg for a foot rub.
I’m not really sure why this has never been something I’ve explored before. Maybe it is because I associate the term “freezer cooking” with unhealthy casseroles packed with processed ingredients and no nutritional value. Or maybe it is because in the past I’ve made a few “healthy” freezer meals that remained in the freezer until frostbite took over and they had to be thrown away.
Either way, in the last few weeks I’ve discovered that you can make nutritious make ahead dishes that are also tasty enough that you not only motivated but excited to pull them out of the freezer and cook them.
Thanks to reader suggestions on my Facebook page, I’ve started making many of these dishes with quinoa.
This Broccoli Quinoa Casserole has become one of my favorites! I like doubling it and cooking one that night and freezing the second. I also make four batches of the cream of celery soup so that I have it in the freezer to use for other recipes. (It’s great in hash brown casserole and anywhere else that you would normally use canned soup!)
If you are entertaining or have a potluck, you can also make this casserole a day ahead and bake it just prior to serving.
I’m looking forward to one day having a packed freezer and looking forward to when I can say goodbye to the daily stress of figuring out what is for dinner.
Do you have any freezer cooking tips you would like to share?
Broccoli Quinoa Casserole
- 5 cups chopped broccoli
- 3 cups cooked quinoa about 1 cup uncooked
- 2 cups Cream of Celery Soup
- ½ teaspoon ground mustard
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 ½ cups sharp cheddar cheese OR Daiya Shreds divided
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Toss together broccoli and quinoa in a large bowl. Add cream of celery soup, ground mustard, cayenne pepper and ¾ cup of shredded cheese. Toss well and transfer to a 13 x 9 baking dish. Top with remaining ¾ cup of cheese and bake for 40 to 45 minutes.
Recipe NotesMake Ahead: This dish may be made ahead and frozen prior to baking. If making ahead, steam the broccoli for 8 minutes prior to tossing with the quinoa. (This will preserve the color when frozen.) Allow the casserole to thaw out overnight in the refrigerator and bake for 45 minutes.
Servings 8, Calories 254, Fat 15g, Carbohydrates 19.7g, Protein 11.6g, Cholesterol 23mg, Sodium 522mg, Fiber 3.4g, Sugars 1.4g