Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A Chicken of a Deal

Last month one of my co-ops was offering a pretty darn good buy on some bulk chicken, and I had just been thinking on the fact that life is so busy right now--and somewhat unpredictable with two in diapers and all--and how I needed some freezer meals or some semi-prepped food in my freezer for those crazy or tiring days that seem to be...like every other day! 

The price for the chicken deal was great, but there was a catch.  The chicken deal was for 20 lbs of frozen breast/tenders/cutlets of assorted sizes frozen all together in two 10 lb bags.  So, yeah, basically two 10 lb frozen solid blocks of chicken meat...but for an excellent price.  I bought it.

I just finally got around to prepping one of the 10 lb blocks of chicken meat, and here's what I did. I ignored the fact that they were individual chicken pieces.  I thawed the entire package and simply dumped the whole thing in my extra large dutch oven with a little water and slowly cooked all the meat on a low temperature until it was fully cooked, moist and tender.  Then I shredded some and chopped some, and I froze the cooked meat in 1.5-2 lb portions (enough for a meal for us).  It came out to 7 packages plus about 3 cups of chicken broth.  

 

By cooking the meat completely plain with no seasonings whatsoever, I can now use the meat however I choose.  I can add barbecue sauce to shredded chicken and serve on buns. I can defrost shredded chicken and make chicken salad. I can add chopped chicken to soup or use it in chicken and rice, with pasta or on top of a salad.  Having the pre-cooked meat has already been a help, a time saver and a SANITY saver!!  :) 

Sometimes we just need to think out of the box a bit.  While two 10 lb solid blocks of frozen chicken breast pieces of assorted sizes doesn't exactly sound ideal, with a little thought I was able to make it work for me by turning it into a time-saving, money-saving help.  It was cheap, it was quick and simple to prepare, and now I'm reaping the ease of it all with partially-prepped meals in my freezer.

2 comments:

  1. I appreciate this post, Christy! I bought one of those mega-packs of chicken, too, and it sat in my freezer for the longest time until I hosted a gathering large enough to use it up. Your idea is terrific! Now I won't be hesitant to reorder the mega-pack again.

    Vicki S.

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  2. I jumped over here again so I could refresh my memory on what you did with those mega-packs of chicken before I place my co-op order. Thanks again for this great suggestion! :-)

    Vicki

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