It's the never-ending dilemma: you want to prepare healthy, tasty, well-balanced meals for yourself and your family, but there never seems to be enough time for cooking. The good news is that it is possible to cut down on time spent in the kitchen without sacrificing nutrition – or flavor. The trick? Use frozen ingredients. Whether fruit, vegetables or meat, frozen foods often have the same health benefits as fresh, while also being wonderfully convenient.
Read on to learn about some of the best frozen foods to help you get meals on the table faster.
What's one of the most time-consuming parts of cooking a meal? Chopping vegetables! Use frozen vegetables to get all the health benefits without all the time spent slicing and dicing. Here are just a few examples of frozen veggies you can buy already chopped:
- Chopped onions – Sauté in olive oil or butter for 10 minutes for use in soups, pasta dishes, and casseroles.
- Corn – Put frozen corn in a strainer and run under water for a few seconds to thaw quickly, then add to soups, salads, or serve as a simple side dish with a little butter and salt.
- Diced peppers – Perfect for stir-fry or fajitas. Just add the frozen peppers to a frying pan with a little olive oil over medium heat and sauté until crisp-tender.
- Peas and carrots – A great addition to casseroles or chicken pot pie.
Southern Living also offers some great tips for cooking with frozen vegetables.
Buying already-cooked, frozen chicken can be a big time-saver. If the chicken is already cut into bite-size pieces, it will heat up quickly and be ready to use in pasta, tacos, stir-fry, casseroles and just about any other chicken dish you can imagine.
On our Meal Ideas page, we offer tons of easy recipe suggestions using Kahiki Tempura Chicken or StirFresh Chicken. Check out our Tempura Chicken Noodle Toss or this tasty Orange Chicken & Edamame Rice Bowl.
Simple fruit smoothies are a great, healthy breakfast or lunch on-the-go – just toss a cup of frozen strawberries into your blender along with a banana, a few dollops of plain (or Greek) yogurt, and about one cup of low-fat milk. Mix up the flavors by trying other frozen fruit like peaches, mangos, or mixed berries.
Frozen fruit is also perfect for desserts. This Easy Batter Fruit Cobbler can be whipped up in minutes using frozen berries or peaches.