Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tasty Tuesday - Make Ahead Meals - Chicken

I almost always buy my meat at Sam's, because no matter what, that's usually the cheapest way to go. At the beginning of this month I got boneless, skinless chicken breast for $1.77/lb. I bought two packages as close to $10 as possible.
Before I get started on the chicken, I pull out a dozen or so freezer bags and date them. I then make my own home-made Chicken Teriyaki Sauce, my own BBQ sauce (still tweaking that recipe), and I have made my own Italian dressing. I also stock the Kraft dressings (or whatever brand) when I can get them for almost free. I buy the ones that are good for marinades (and of course dairy-free).
BBQ Sauce

I pre-wash my chicken, in preparation to be frozen. We prefer chicken tenders to a whole breast (it cooks up faster, and usually more tender), so I cut the breast into two or three strips, depending on the size of the breast. I then place 5-6 tenders in each bag. (Two each for my husband and me, and one for each of the girls.)

Then I add some of marinade to each bag. I now have several ready-to-bake (or grill) chicken meals! If I forget to thaw the meat in the morning, then I just put it in a glass dish close to dinner time, pop it in the oven, and preheat it with the oven. I usually set it to 400 degrees, and it's ready in about 25 minutes. Just enough time to make some rice to go with it! However, we prefer it on the grill, so that is usually how we will cook it up. Either way, it's nice to have it all ready to go, rather than trying to figure out, "How should I fix this tonight?"

This last time I also breaded up some chicken, par froze it on a baking sheet, and then bagged it up. These came out great!

I also did this with pork chops. We just buy the assorted pork chops at Sam's, and my husband loves them on the grill! It's actually the only way he'll eat them! They taste really good with the teriyaki marinade. Yum!

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