Having a repertoire of good freezer recipes and pantry recipes is essential right now. Make the most of the things you stocked up on with this roundup of our favorite recipes, adapted for freezer and pantry ingredients!
These are strange times and it seems that, after the virus itself, sourcing quality food is a top concern for many families. Meals are important not only for their nutrition, but for their ability to bring us together and establish connection.
Even if you live alone, I've heard that some are doing “virtual dinner parties,” cooking the same meal in their separate homes and then video chatting over a glass of wine. Find connection where you can right now!
If you haven't checked out our Facebook group, it's a super welcoming and helpful community so please join us there if you're looking for connection or recipe tips!
I've rounded up some of my favorite Prep Dish recipes with notes on how to adapt for what you have in the pantry and freezer. Please don't hesitate to reach out to our team if you have any questions about making substitutions. We are here for you!
Breakfast Pantry & Freezer Recipes
If you have eggs, you can totally rework this green shakshuka recipe with what you have in your freezer and pantry.
If you don't have fresh onions and garlic, use onion powder and garlic powder.
Thaw and squeeze as much liquid as possible from whatever frozen greens you have and then sauté until wilted. Follow the rest of the instructions as written. If you don't have any fresh herbs, feel free to substitute with dried.
This recipe uses only freezer and pantry items as-is, no substitutions needed! Spread on whatever bread you enjoy or stir into plain yogurt or my Paleo Oatmeal for a fruity twist.
Smoothies are a great way to use that frozen fruit! If you don't have frozen bananas, try adding a date or a bit of honey or maple until it's sweet enough for you.
My chocolate cherry smoothie already calls for all pantry and freezer ingredients but feel free to sub frozen raspberries or strawberries if you don't have cherries.
No bananas in your freezer? Try adding frozen cauliflower for creaminess and a but of honey or maple for sweetness.
Omit the fresh zucchini if you don't have any and add in some frozen greens instead!
Main Dish Recipes (& Sides!) for Freezer & Pantry Ingredients
Recipes using ground meat:
Whether you use pork, beef, turkey or lamb, this recipe is super comforting and versatile.
You can leave out the onion and peppers if you don't have them (or use frozen and sauté then chop!). With all of the spices in this recipe, it will still be super flavorful. Bison is delicious here, but sub ground beef if needed.
If you don't have spaghetti squash, serve over zoodles, pasta, or over rice or cauliflower rice, bowl-style!
I've noticed that less common meats like lamb are more available in some stores right now, so it may be a good time to branch out! If you've never cooked lamb before, don't be intimidated! It's easier than you think and so full of flavor.
Serve on buns, lettuce wraps, or just plain with a side of steamed or roasted frozen vegetables.
Recipes using chicken:
Use chicken from your freezer and whatever vegetables you have on hand.
If you're roasting frozen veggies, roast them on a separate sheet pan from the chicken and make sure to stir half way through to distribute the olive oil and spices.
No lemons on-hand? A few teaspoons of balsamic vinegar make a good substitute to add some acidity.
You can also use garlic powder instead of fresh garlic if needed.
While the fresh garlic, ginger and green onions definitely contribute to the flavor, the backbone of this dish is all pantry ingredients. Leave out what you don't have and adjust the seasoning as needed!
If you don't have strained tomatoes, puree diced or whole canned tomatoes in the food processor. This will result in a thinner sauce so you may want to simmer on the stove for a bit to thicken,
With only 4 ingredients, this is a great at-home date night recipe that feels fancy but is super simple.
Recipes using pork:
Apart from the garnishes, the only non-pantry ingredient in this one is a naval orange. If you don't have an orange, sub an extra 1/4 Cup broth or water. You can also try adding a bit of apple cider vinegar to add some acidity the orange juice would normally provide.
All freezer / pantry ingredients for this one, no subs needed!
Recipes Using Seafood:
When you're ready for some spring and summer flavors, give this one a try! Omit the cilantro if needed.
Recipes using beans:
Use frozen peppers and onions in place of fresh if needed. If you don't have those, get creative! Experiment with different veggie add-ins like carrots or sweet potatoes.
This baked beans recipe is a delicious way to dress up a plain old can of pinto or navy beans, all with pantry ingredients! Baked beans make a great side for the bbq chicken recipe above.
Replace fresh garlic with garlic powder and fresh basil with dried if needed.
Pantry & Freezer Recipes for Treats
When you (or your kids!) want a sweet treat that's still nutritious, chocolate energy bites are an excellent choice.
Play around with what you have in your pantry to mix it up with these tasty treats. Dried cherries and pecans, dried apricots and almonds, you can't go wrong!
Your kids will be so impressed with these homemade treats. Try making them together when the kids are getting stir crazy and need a special activity!
Apart from eggs and a lemon, these are made entirely from the pantry and freezer (just use frozen raspberries!). These Paleo brownies are perfect for any special occasions you have coming up, like an anniversary or birthday.
This elevated version of the childhood classic will be a hit with the whole family!
When you need an adults-only treat to get you through this time, try my rum balls. Sub bourbon if you like!
Coconut milk, honey, and vanilla extract are all you need for this one, but feel free to get creative with toppings and mix-ins! Set up an ice cream bar & movie night if your family needs a morale boost.
For more ideas on how to use pantry and freezer ingredients, make sure to download our full Prep Dish-style pantry / freezer menu here!