Frugal Friday – Freezer toddler meals with leftovers

If you’re anything like me, you box up leftovers in a plastic container and put them into the fridge, fully intending to use them.  But you never do. They land up becoming next week’s science project for when you clear the fridge before a grocery shop.   But here’s one of the best tips I’ve ever come across.

When dinner is over, spoon the leftovers in the pot into small containers – big enough for a portion of lunch or dinner for your toddler – mark them up and pop them into the freezer straight away!  I’ve been doing this with leftover sparghetti bolognaise, pasta bakes, cottage pie,  chicken pot pie, casseroles etc.  Often a small portion that you would normally throw away because it’s too small for a meal of leftovers is perfect to freeze for your baby.  No more spending a day cooking special food to freeze for your toddler.

If you think about it, you can do this with so many things! Before you toss any good food out, think to yourself, ‘could this be frozen for my toddler for later?’

*Leftover pancakes?  Freeze them for a snack for your toddler.

*Leftover cheese sauce?  Freeze it and serve with leftover pasta for a quick meal.

*Half a frozen banana? Freeze it in a baggie for a deliciously cold ice lolly snack without preservatives or artificial junk.

*Leftover soup?  Perfect for an autumn lunch.

*Leftover stewed fruit or fruit compote is brilliant for freezing in ice-cube size portions for making into smoothies for breakfast.

*Slightly stale pita breads are perfect candidates to be frozen.  Thaw and top with tomato paste, cheese and toppings and bake in the oven for a quick pizza.

*Leftover portions of hummus can be frozen and defrosted to serve with pita breads or vegetable sticks.

*Only a few blueberries or blackberries left in the punnet. Freeze them! They are easily added to a smoothie or porridge for breakfast. They are fantastic for teething babies or even for an icy snack or dessert in summer.

 Tips for success:

 1. Keep a separate drawer in your fridge for your toddler foods to make sure you don’t ‘lose’ them in the freezer.  These portions are small and are woth having them on hand for quick access. Little tummies, won’t wait!

2. Always label things clearly with the contents and the date to prevent upset tummies.

3. Either the night before you require it, or in the morning take the toddler meal out of the freezer to thaw in the fridge or just microwave straight from frozen.  Be sure to check the heat before serving the portion once it’s been microwaved to prevent burning a little mouth.

 Hope this article inspires you,

Bright blessings

 Mama R

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