Photos by Lindsey Johnson
Right now is the perfect time to start freezer cooking. Summer produce is at its peak—peppers are prolific, CSA boxes are brimming with tomatoes and corn, and they’re practically giving away zucchini at farmers markets. And as summer is about to end, the days get busier and shorter and it gets harder and harder to take time out for cooking a dinner every night. Making food in bulk and freezing it lets you preserve all the flavors of summer and enjoy them in the form of effortless meals for a few more months.
Cooking dinner every night with a new baby has been a challenge, so I’ve been making soups and casseroles when I have the chance on the weekend and freezing them for later. This Slow Cooker Veggie Tortilla Soup from our Guide to Freezer Cooking is one of my favorites for this time of year. It makes use of summer corn and peppers and since it’s made in the slow cooker, it’s pretty hands-off after the prep work is done and it won’t heat up your kitchen when you’re making it. It can be customized with your favorite fixings after re-heating—cheese or sour cream if you eat dairy, avocado and cilantro if you’re vegan.
If you’re looking to get started with freezer cooking, the Oh My Veggies Guide to Freezer Cooking is the perfect way to start. Not only does it have over 30 meatless freezer-friendly meal recipes, but it will show you how to freeze food too. For more make and freeze meals, check out these recipes:
Garden Veggie Freezer Burritos
How to Make and Freeze Homemade Tomato Sauce
Freezer-Friendly Greens & Tofu Scramble Wraps
How to Make Beans in a Slow Cooker and Freeze Them
Make-Ahead Cheese & Roasted Vegetable Baked Manicotti
Make-Ahead Breakfast Quesadillas
CRISPY TORTILLA STRIPS: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Using a pizza cutter or large chef’s knife, cut 8 corn tortillas into several 1/2-inch-wide by 3-inch-long strips. Spread tortilla strips in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake, turning once, for 10-12 minutes, just until hard and crunchy. Remove from oven and let cool.
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