Need some fresh ideas for postpartum freezer meals? Check out our pro tips for stocking up freezer for before baby, with tried and tested recipes and an EASY hack to get your freezer full of meals your family will actually eat!
The newborn phase. Such a beautiful time, full of meeting and greeting your new little person, lots of snuggles, and so many firsts together. There are so many beautiful parts to life postpartum.
But let’s be honest- there’s also a WHOLE lot going on in your life. In addition to cuddles and magic, there will also be lots of messes to clean up, lots of physical changes going on, and a whole bunch of new things to learn.
The last thing a new mom should be doing? Worrying about getting dinner on the table every night, too.
If you’re lucky, your friends, family, or church will step up to the plate, bringing meals for you to heat and eat. If you’re less lucky, you might just find yourself on your own getting back to “normal” life sooner than you expected.
No matter what your level of support in the kitchen may be, making some postpartum freezer meals is a great way to prepare for your new life as a mom. And it’s a fantastic place to channel your nesting energy, too.
So whether you’re stocking up the freezer before baby arrives or looking for tips for making freezer meals for a new mom in your life, we’ve got you covered with these simple, scrumptious, and freezable meals from some of our very favorite food blogging friends.
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Making Postpartum Freezer Meals Your Family will Actually Eat
No matter how many meals you prep and how hard you work, let’s face it- all that work will be for nothing if your family won’t actually make what you’re cooking.
The best strategy to ensure that those delicious freezer meals get eaten, start by looking at recipes that you already make and love. Which ones would do well frozen? Or is there a part of the recipe that you can prep and freeze ahead of time to make cooking that meal easier in the future?
For example, my family gobbles up this chicken taco recipe. The homemade shells I make aren’t freezable, but the shredded chicken is. So it makes sense to add a bag or two of shredded chicken taco meat to my freezer, eliminating a big part of the prep and clean up for once baby arrives.
If you are going to go with some dedicated freezer meals, I recommend trying the recipe with your family before adding to your freezer. I made some pretty disappointing freezer meals with my first baby (some we literally had to throw out they were so yuck!). Avoid wasting time and money by testing the recipe before stocking your freezer with brand new-to-you freezer meals.
An Easy Trick for Stocking Up the Freezer Before Baby Arrives
One of the easiest ways to stock up your freezer before baby arrives isn’t by having a dedicated freezer meal cooking session. While those are great if they work for you, there’s a MUCH simpler way to get ahead on meal prep.
Whenever you make a meal for your own family, ask yourself how easy would it be to double the recipe. And if you do double it, does it make sense to make one for dinner tonight and another for the freezer?
Take my chicken tacos, for example. It’s just as easy to stick six chicken breasts into the instant pot as it is to put in three. Doubling the recipe and freezing half just makes sense, and adds virtually no extra dishes, mess, or time to your recipe.
Other meals that freeze really well would be bowls (like burrito bowls, eggroll in a bowl, or chicken fried rice) as well as casseroles, enchiladas, and baked pasta dishes. Texture could change a bit after freezing and reheating, but if your family already enjoys the flavor, they’re likely to let a little change slide.
Tips for Making Freezer Meals for a New Mom
If you’re planning on gifting the new mom to be with freezer meals, you can plan on using the same strategies as above to stock your friend’s freezer before the baby comes. (Also, HI. We need more friends like you in the world. Kudos to you!!) Double up your family’s own dinner, or make two freezer meals- one for you, and one for your friend.
Some things to keep in mind: postpartum freezer meals are designed to be prepped and eaten by VERY busy new moms. Try to focus on meals that are easy to store and reheat. And many meals postpartum are eaten by a mom or dad that is also holding a baby, so try to make something that can be eaten one-handed.
You can also make their life easier by sending the meal in a disposable pan, in cheap tupperware, or even in a Ziploc bag (this works well for bowls and soups). That way they won’t have to worry about washing the dish and getting it back to you right away. As an added bonus, it also means you can write reheating instructions right on the container with a Sharpie so they don’t have to try to guess on their own later.
Freezer Meal Supplies
Here are some items that are VERY handy to keep on hand when making your freezer meals. They’ll help keep your freezer organized, and make reheating the meals a breeze.
- Disposable aluminum pans (to hold larger items, like baked pasta or casseroles, for freezer-to-oven ease)
- Gallon size Ziploc bags (to freeze and store things like soups or bowls flat)
- Sharpies (for writing instructions on your meals)
- Slow cooker liners (for easy clean up of slow cooker meals)
- Freezer Prep Labels (to keep track of what you made, when you made it, and how to reheat it)
- Freezer Inventory (a fun little gift and tool for the new mom to keep track of what’s going into the freezer)
Now Onto Our Favorite Postpartum Freezer Meals:
Who doesn’t love the cheesy comfort of a yummy lasagna? Check out this recipe from Saving Talents, complete with freeze ahead instructions to take our the guess work. Lasagna from Saving Talents
As a bonus, you can bring the frozen lasagna directly to the new mama and her family, which gives them the option to thaw and eat it right away or put it back into the freezer, depending on their needs.
Another dish that freezes well is enchiladas. The sauce can sometimes pose a problem, but this recipe for Enchiladas with Cheese Sauce actually freezes beautifully.
I like to pick up some beans and rice from a local Mexican restaurant to bring along with the enchiladas, but you can also make them yourself (or skip it. No one is going to complain that their free food doesn’t come with some sides!)
These make-ahead spinach lasagna rolls hit all the requirements for a postpartum freezer meal. They’re full of flavor, loaded with sneaky veggies, and SO easy to eat one handed.
I love how this pesto mozzarella chicken recipe is outside of the “norm” for freezer meals, which helps to keep the meals you’re giving the new mama nice and varied.
Bring along a bag of steam-in-the-bag frozen veggies and some sixty second microwave pasta to round out the meal. (And yes, we know microwave pasta may seem sacrilegious to some of you, but it’s a god-send for easy postpartum meals!)
Check out this scrumptious recipe for pork fried rice. It’s a family favorite and has been around for generations, and is such a crowd pleaser.
But get ready to share the recipe with just about everybody who tastes it- they’re gonna want to put this one in the regular rotation!
These chicken fajita bowls are chock full of flavor, and super easy to eat one handed. Make and freeze the filling ahead of time for a scrumptious, healthy freezer option.
Bring tortillas to turn the fajitas into the classic version of the dish, or mix with rice for a more filling option.
Hey, the new mama and her family need to eat other meals besides dinner! Fill their freezer with a breakfast option with these yummy breakfast burritos.
The new mom (and their family!) will thank you for it.
This chicken tortilla soup can go straight from the new mom’s freezer to her crockpot, making it a crazy easy meal to get onto the table.
Freeze the soup flat in a Ziploc bag for easy storage (and don’t forget to bring her some slow-cooker liners to make clean up a breeze!)
Prep these adorable little meatloaves in advance, and then throw them into the freezer until you’re ready to cook them.
Bring along a side of mashed potatoes (which freeze beautifully, too) and a bag of frozen veggies to round out this meal.
This recipe for Cajun Roast Chicken and Veggies is a one-stop shop when it comes to freezer stocking. It’s got your protein, starch, and veggies all in one, so there’s nothing else to prep, cook, or bring along.
Don’t forget to prep it in a foil pan, and write the cooking instructions on top!
Whether you’re making meals to stock your freezer before baby, or looking to take some of the best freezer meals for a new mom, these tips will have you prepping and cooking freezer meals that will be an absolute blessing in the postpartum phase.
Did someone prep freezer meals for you when you were pregnant? We’d love to hear your stories in the comments below!