34 Crockpot Freezer Meals: Healthy, Budget-Friendly, and Time-Saving Family Dinner Recipes
Are you alarmed by your family’s weekly consumption of fast food?
In an ideal world, you’d have all the time you need to prepare delicious and healthy home-cooked meals for the people you love. However, by the hectic schedules most of us run our days, take-out meals from quick-service restaurants and fast-food joints have become menu mainstays in the average American family’s weeknight dinners.
It has been shown that eating way too much fast food has a direct link with health issues in people, mostly kids and teenagers.
However, there is a solution to this unhealthy way of eating: crockpot freezer meals.
These make-ahead meals are friendly on the budget and are the perfect time savers. They go directly from freezer to slow cooker. Yes, prep time is necessary. But this method ensures two things:
- You and your family will NOT be eating fast food tonight. You’re the one in charge of selecting the dishes to prepare. So, you are aware that only the freshest ingredients went into those freezer bags. That’s a big plus for your whole family’s health.
- You free up your time to focus your attention on other things. Now, you don’t need to keep an eye on a simmering pot of chowder. Go write the next great bestseller. Give your pets a bath. Play with the kids in the park. Make the calls to seal that deal.
In this post, I’ve collected recipe suggestions from the experts on make-ahead crockpot meals for the family. Some of the dishes are all-time favorites; others are healthier versions of popular take-out fares.
Most of the dishes below yield an average of 4-6 servings.
Cooking only for two? Divide the prepped dish into two or three portions. Place in separate freezer bags so they’re available when you’re again ready to indulge. That gives you more savings!
In addition, consider having a meal plan. It can help you efficiently keep track of the menu for the week and manage your time more effectively. It is a great plus if this is your first time to prep make-ahead meals.
So let’s get crock-in!
1. Chicken Teriyaki
The recipe for this all-time favorite is so simple, there's no way it shouldn't be on your menu this week. The big plus is that you're using all-natural ingredients for additional health benefits.
2. Taco Chili
Stock up on this main course and have something handy when you want a comforting dish to serve for dinner. Top over hot rice or serve in taco shells.
3. Chicken Salsa
Enjoy this dish because it is so flavorful and juicy. You can serve the meat pulled apart or in whole pieces topped over the rest of the ingredients.
4. Chickpea Tortilla Soup
This hearty dish is a lifesaver when you've had a tiring day. The recipe is also versatile that by switching some of the ingredients, it can be perfect for those who love meat and vegetarians alike.
5. Sweet Fire Chicken
Take delight in this sweet-spicy dish that's full of essential nutrients courtesy of fresh ingredients. If you love spicy food, amplify the heat by adding extra dashes of pepper flakes.
6. Texas Roadhouse Pot Roast
Save time in your dinner preparations without sacrificing the flavor of the dish with this recipe. It has the right blend of savory, sweet, and spicy that makes for a memorable meal.
7. Easy Pot Roast
While we’re on the subject of pot roasts, here’s another recipe version to try. This meal is a great budget saver. It's quite easy to prepare and the flavor will remind you of joyful family dinners.
8. Chipotle Sweet Pulled Pork
If you're looking for a meal to serve when company comes over, this dish is just perfect. Also, if you love spicy food, then you've got to try this recipe because it has the right level of heat that blends well with its natural sweetness.
9. Honey Soy Pork Tenderloin
You have a standout family meal with this recipe. The best part is that it's so easy to prepare, you'll still have time to accomplish other tasks on your to-do list.
10. Lemon Garlic Dump Chicken
Don’t let the name scare you. The zesty dish is infused with the flavors of lemon and garlic. It is so easy to prepare - just thaw and dump in a crockpot. Dinner will be ready before you know it.
Serve a family favorite for dinner without much stress in the preparation with this pizza. Plus points if you use the freshest ingredients available for a truly healthy fare.
12. Bacon Covered Kalua Pork
The developer of this recipe discovered it quite by chance, but the result is a tasty fare that makes for a memorable meal. Its versatility makes it possible to serve it over hot rice or as filling in a bun drizzled with barbeque sauce.
13. Tilapia and Pesto Foil Packets
Get into the good habit of eating healthy.
This is a convenient, freeze-for-later meal that you'll truly appreciate for its taste and nutritional value. You'll get flaky and tender fish bursting with the delicious flavors of lemon and pesto minus the excess calories.
14. White Chicken Chili
This recipe's developer reveals that this bowl of chili's draw lies in the contradictions of soft and chunky, spicy and creamy. The blend of these contrasting elements truly makes for a memorable dish.
15. Red Beans and Rice
Prepare several portions of this ultimate comfort food. The secret of its heartiness lies in the broth.
16. Sweet and Sour BBQ Meatballs
There are only six ingredients you need in order to assemble this dish. It only requires less than 10 minutes prep time, and you'll have a delicious meal standing by in the freezer for when you need it.
17. Bourbon Chicken
A bowl of rice where you can pour this delicious dish is all you need to get dinner going. It is a healthier alternative to the takeout variety and tastier, too.
18. Chicken and Black Bean Soup
The enticing smell of this soup simmering the whole day will fill you with anticipation. Top with tortilla chips before serving.
19. Onion Soup Mix Meat Loaf
Serve this ultimate American comfort food with the least effort on cooking day. It has added points of being a healthy meal because you know what the exact ingredients are.
20. Cheesy Chicken, Rice and Broccoli Casserole
Savor another all-time favorite dish. When it's time to cook a batch, add the grated cheese only towards the end of the cooking time to make this dinner a resounding success.
21. 3-Ingredient Ranch Pork Chops
This is a super easy recipe that's not lacking in flavor. When making batches for freezing, sprinkle ranch seasoning on both sides of each chop and place a dollop of gravy between layers.
22. Flank Steak Beef Fajitas
Make mealtimes an occasion of celebration with this flavorful dish. Serve while warm with salsa and corn tortillas.
23. Sunday Sauce
This super rich, meaty sauce is perfect for any meal. It has that hearty goodness that will make this a beloved dish by the whole family. Searing the meat before putting it in the freezer adds more flavor later in the crockpot.
24. Balsamic Shredded Beef
This wholesome meal will soon be a mainstay for your weeknight dinners because it's so easy to prepare. More importantly, kids love it, too!
25. Country Ribs Dinner
Enjoy this comforting dish loaded with tender meat and wholesome vegetables. You can add a pinch of cayenne pepper if you want that extra heat from the dish.
This meal is so easy to prepare and yet it's also the most satisfying. It is the perfect recipe to try for those who are new to meal prepping, but old hands will also want to try this for the flavor.
27. Garlic Parmesan Chicken Stew
Nothing compares with a hearty bowl of stew as the weather gets colder. Stock up on plenty of this dish in the freezer for comforting dinners to come.
28. Greek Lemon Chicken Soup (Avgolemono)
Here is a recipe inspired by a Greek dish, which is a tasty twist to the traditional chicken soup. The creaminess of the dish is courtesy of the addition of eggs - an ingredient you'd probably not expect on chicken soup. Yet it works well in this recipe.
29. Beef and Sweet Potato Stew
This soup is filled with the hearty goodness of sweet potatoes and tender beef. Gather all ingredients for this beef stew and place in a freezer bag for use on days you are craving for comfort in a bowl.
30. Bacon Lentil Soup
Here is a super healthy recipe. It is loaded with vegetables and lentils, making it a high-fiber, wholesome soup you'll love.
31. Marinated and Grilled Beef
Grab the chance of making something utterly delicious with cheap cuts of meat. Pair with mashed potatoes for a scrumptious meal.
32. Turkey Bolognese Over Smoked Gouda Grits
This meal is blessed comfort if you are in the midst of a hectic week. It doesn't hurt that it's very flavorful and packed with health-giving nutrients.
33. Loaded Potato Soup
It's easy to forego preparing healthy meals when you're having a busy day. But there's no reason not to anymore with this amazing soup. Top with cheese, crumbled bacon, or herbs. Even kids love it.
34. Kung Pao Chicken
This dish is a medley of delightful flavors. To ensure perfection, brown chicken prior to adding all ingredients in a gallon freezer bag. Make several portions and keep in freezer until you're ready to indulge.
There you have it.
I hope you’ve come across potential favorites among the recipe suggestions for crockpot freezer meals. I encourage you to try prepping some dishes soon.
In case you’re looking for more make-ahead recipes, visit this post to check out other freezer meal ideas worth trying.
Developing a new mindset and becoming more aware about your eating habits can increase your longevity. If you are interested in pursuing more good habits in other areas of your life, whether for better health or peace of mind, this post can help you get started.
I wish you all the best!