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8 Slow Cooker Freezer Meals Made From Leftovers

[1]I am the world’s worst at throwing leftovers into my freezer and forgetting about them. Every few months, while I am re-organizing my freezer (because I’ve thrown so many leftovers in there), I am amazed at how much food has amassed.

Since foods begin to lose their freshness factor after 4 months of freezing, it’s  time to get them out of the freezer. That’s when my creative juices start flowing and I start turning them into make-ahead meals for the crock pot. A busy mom can always use a few of these freezer meals ready to go.

All of these recipes use leftovers from my freezer and a couple of pantry items I have stored away. A majority of the meals reflect the leftovers that I had in my freezer from the holidays.

There are pros and cons [2] to this method of food storage, but the greatest aspect of this is the time efficiency of it. Knowing that I have a week’s worth of food ready to go in my freezer, takes a bit of pressure off of me.

Tips for Creating Make-Ahead Meals

  1. Label your zip-loc bags
  2. Frozen meals are good in the freezer for 3-4 months. After that, they begin losing their freshness.
  3. Write down all of your recipes.
  4. Chop vegetables and meat ahead of time. This makes for a seamless process.
  5. For future freezing of leftovers, freeze single ingredients in a zip-loc bag. Popular food ingredients such as chicken, ground beef, broth can always be used for freezer meals. Store these up, add some spices and a few vegetables and voila – instant meal.

8 Easy Make-Ahead Meals

Chicken Tacos

  1. Add all ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag and store in freezer for up to 4 months.
  2. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

  1. Add all ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag and store in freezer for up to 4 months.
  2. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours. Ladle soup into a bowl and top with sliced avocado, cheddar cheese and tortilla chips.

Spicy Peanut Chicken

  1. Add all ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag and store in freezer for up to 4 months.
  2. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours. Serve with white rice.

Peach Glazed Pork Tenderloin

  • 1 pork tenderloin
  • 2 cups carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup peach preserves (I used spicy jalapeno peach preserves leftover from the holidays)
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • salt and pepper
  1. Add all ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag and store in freezer for up to 4 months.
  2. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours. Serve with white rice.

 Balsamic Roast Pork Tenderloin

  • 3 potatoes, sliced
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 1 pork tenderloin, fat trimmed off, sliced in 2 inch slices
  • 4 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasonings
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Add first three ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag.
  2. In a mixing bowl, add remaining ingredients and stir briskly until combined. Pour over contents of zip-loc bag. Store up to 4 months.
  3. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours. Serve with white rice.

Ham and Beans


  • 1 meaty ham bone
  • 1 bag white cannellini beans, cooked
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  1. Add all ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag and store in freezer for up to 4 months.
  2. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours.

Pesto Turkey Soup

  • 1/2 bag cannellini beans, cooked
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cups shredded turkey meat
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons all purpose seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup pesto sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 handfuls spinach
  1. Add all ingredients to a gallon size zip-loc bag and store in freezer for up to 4 months.
  2. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high setting for 4-6 hours.

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon season salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 can pineapple chunks, juice reserved
  1. In a mixing bowl, add ground beef, bread crumbs, spices and egg and mix well. Form meatballs and set in a gallon size zip-loc bag.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, add water, reserved pineapple juice and cornstarch and beat until mixture is thickened.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
  4. Pour mixture into zip-loc bag. Store up to 4 months.
  5. To prepare, allow meal to defrost and add to crock pot. Cook on high 4-6 hours. Serve with white rice.