How to Build Your Dinner From Your Freezer Stash
The grocery stores may be challenging. Amazon may be out of flour. But don't feel discouraged. If product unavailability has you up against a wall these days, look to your freezer and pantry for inspiration! We've found ten recipes that we think you'll be able to make with items you already have stocked up and on-hand.
Easy As Chicken Pot Pie
This recipe uses frozen vegetables, so you don't have to rely on what may or may not be available at your local store. Use chicken from the freezer that you've cooked or canned chicken. If you don't have frozen puff pastry, you can substitute regular pie crust. If pie crust isn't available either, you can make your own with flour, butter, water, and salt. "I love pot pie, and this is at the top of my list," says TopMamaCat.
Cauliflower Rice Stir-Fry
Frozen cauliflower rice is the star of this dish. "This makes three large portions suitable for a main meal," says France C. "I ended up cooking the cauliflower in two batches. Otherwise my large pan was too crowded, and the veggies were just steaming as opposed to frying. I did this over high heat. I topped it with fresh green onion. A healthy low-carb alternative to fried rice that I'll be making again!"
Quinoa and Black Beans
This dish explores the depths of both pantry and freezer. You'll need quinoa, canned black beans (but feel free to substitute whatever beans you happen to have), frozen corn, vegetable stock, and little else. Quick, easy, and popular — this recipe is a surefire winner. As Naomi Witzke says, "If I could give this six stars, I would. This satisfies all my requirements for a great recipe!"
Vegan Indian Curry with Cauliflower and Lentils
Frozen green beans add brightness to this bold curry, and the other veggies — carrot and cauliflower — can also be of the frozen variety. By using pantry powerhouses like red lentils and canned coconut milk, you'll create a delicious dinner that rivals your favorite takeout spot.
Allow your frozen shrimp (which shrimp lovers should always have in the freezer) to be the star of the show in this protein-heavy dish. You can serve the finished product over rice, egg noodles, or whatever else you happen to find in your pantry. "Spicy, perfect heat," Ivegarn says of this dish. "My husband loved it. Will definitely make again."
Savory Tater Tot Casserole
This casserole is a freezer diver's love song. And nearly every ingredient can be substituted out. Can't find cream of chicken soup in your pantry? Use cream of mushroom instead. None of that, either? Make a quick cream base with milk, butter, and flour. Sub out ground beef for turkey. Don't have mixed frozen vegetables? Use only peas, or only corn, or both. This recipe was made for experimentation.
Instant Pot® Honey-Mustard Salmon from Frozen
"Frozen salmon fillets are so economical, but I often forget to defrost them! This recipe calls for adding frozen salmon fillets directly to your Instant Pot for a perfectly cooked fillet in mere minutes. I finish the salmon under the broiler for just two minutes with a honey-mustard glaze on top," reviewer Diana Moutsopoulos says. "Delicious!"
Quick and Hearty Corn Chowder
This soup is a warm, soothing dish that can be made from items you almost certainly have in your freezer and pantry. In fact, this dish is so good that some Allrecipes users have declared it their favorite. "This is my go-to recipe for corn chowder. I add bacon and cheddar cheese when I serve it," says Amy Krichbaum Greener.
Okra, Chicken and Rice Casserole
Beefy Baked Ravioli
Frozen ravioli is the base for this creamy and hearty recipe. Layers of beef, spaghetti sauce, tomatoes, and cheese coat the ravioli with bold flavor. "This was a quick weeknight meal. We all liked it a lot. I added some spices and a little more sauce on top," says reviewer JENNLYNN.