Saturday, February 5, 2011

Random Thoughts: The Two Types of Frozen Dinners

I'll admit it, I have frozen dinners in my freezer. Some of them are leftovers I have frozen into individual servings and some come from "name brands." Sometimes you get home and you just don't want to cook. If you have been at work or school all day it can be a daunting task to get back to your house just to start on a recipe.

So what are the pros and cons of each? Lets start with a frozen meal you buy at the store.  Most likely you are overpaying for the actual food that you are getting because of the packaging, the preparation, and the transport cost.  Second you have to deal with any chemicals that the company puts in for preservation.  Third...many of them are just not healthy.  All that being said, I would recommend picking some up if there is a brand you like and they go on sale (the 10 for $10 is one of the best deals I've seen).  It may not be perfect but it is something that will get you through the day.

Now what about making your own frozen dinners.  First, you need to buy plastic containers for your food. I like a few tub type containers for soups and stews and then some with individual compartments for meats and veggies.  Second, you do have to take the time to cook the food.  This is great to do on a slow weekend, especially with soups.  Make a big batch and then freeze yourself as many servings as you want. That way you are not eating leftovers of the same thing for days on end but you can pull it out and thaw it whenever you need.  Third, and this is my favorite, you know exactly what you are eating.  You can control the sodium, the seasonings, and the ingredients you put in.

There you go, both have their merits, but between the two I would always go with the latter when you can.  You may have to put in a little extra time but it will save you money in the long run and you can always have a serving of comfort food on hand whenever you need it.

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