Yummy Mummy Monday: Gluten & Dairy Free Freezer Meal Menu

When I was pregnant with Ari I wasn’t able to stock my freezer as well as I would have liked in preparation for the busy weeks following her arrival. Luckily we had family popping in with meals for us for the first two weeks, making it one less thing we had to find energy to do. But if it hadn’t been for them, we would have probably eaten an unhealthy amount of take out due to exhaustion and lack of energy to cook. This time around we have a toddler to feed- and our diets have changed substantially since 2013- so I had to make sure we were stocked with healthy & tasty options that we could all enjoy. Pizza and takeout are just not options, so I was determined to pre- prepare as many meals as possible that could be pulled from the freezer & popped into the slow cooker or oven for those first few weeks when you need to simplify whatever you can. It took me a little while to accumulate a selection of ideas that were both gluten and dairy free- thank you Pinterest!- but I’m pretty happy with the variety of meals I was able to make.

I made these meals over a few days with the help of my Mum & Dad and as I had the time, but it’s definitely a great feeling if you’re able to put aside a few hours and pump them out all at once. Here’s how I stocked my freezer for #2:

Gluten Free Chicken Noodle Soup*

*my Mum’s recipe- I’ll post soon) 🙂
Quantities:
Shepherd’s Pie *4
Cabbage Rolls *2
BBQ Ribs *2
Chicken Fajitas *1
Mongolian Beef *1
Hawaiian Chicken *1
Asparagus & Salmon *1
Soups & pasta sauce *1 batch each (for the sauce 1 batch= 4- 6 meals for the 3 of us) 
I also made sure to stock up on dry goods like gluten free pasta, rice, rice noodles, etc to serve with the freezer meals that don’t already have them included. 
How did you stock your freezer in preparation for baby’s arrival? What are your favourite make- ahead freezer meals?

April posts sponsored by Little Dreamers Consulting

Yummy Mummy Monday: 2 Meals 1 Bird

I’m LOVING having my friend Jena as a regular contributor to TPB, especially when she sends me yummy recipes like this one! With the bump due to arrive at any time I’m really appreciating her help keeping things running smoothly. I’ll keep my blurb short & sweet and hand it over to Jena to introduce this week’s YM post:
When
my husband’s food allergies hit an all-time high and we started researching
what he could eat and what foods would help to heal his intestinal lining,
broth came up again and again. Broth is getting big folks! Food kiosks devoted
entirely to broth are popping up in North America’s hippest cities, and the
broth pioneers are claiming it enhances gut health, fights inflammation, and
provides a healthy dose of proteins, minerals, collagen, and electrolytes.
Luckily for us, an amazing ‘brodo’ (Italian for broth) recipe is a staple in my husband’s
family and I’m going to share my take on that recipe. But first, to make
broth you need ‘ze bones’. In my quest to make broth, I made a roast chicken and
discovered, that while it might seem daunting to roast a chicken, it is in fact
an easy go to for busy parents. You can prep the bird for roasting in under ten
minutes, toss in the oven over some yams for just over an hour and your meal is
complete. No need to put aside 45 minutes in the kitchen, while your two year
old destroys your life- I mean play room. These recipes are gluten free, paleo- friendly, egg free, and dairy free if you omit the parmegiano that I like to
rain down on my soup.
Yummy Mummy Recipe:2 Meals 1 Bird
Simple Roast Chicken with Yams
Chicken Brodo Soup (for all y’all on the broth craze) 
Simple
Roast Chicken with Yams
Prep
time: 10 min
Cook
time: 1-1.5 hours
Ingredients:
Whole
Chicken
Sea
Salt
Pepper
Olive
Oil
2
large yams
Dutch
Oven
Directions: 
1. Preheat
Oven to 400 degrees Farenheit.
 2. I
start by rinsing the bird and I pat it dry so it doesn’t steam in the oven. I
then truss it, which you can Google, but it just means using cooking string to
tie the legs and wings to the bird so they are nice and tight to the body.
3. I
then lather the little lady in olive oil, and cover with sea salt and pepper. I
like to combine the salt and pepper in a bowl before hand, that way I don’t
have to wash my hands in between and can just rub it all in.
4. Slice
yams into ¾ inch pieces and lay at the bottom of the dutch oven. Place the
chicken on top and put into oven. Cook chicken based on weight (approx. 20
minutes per pound). You can use a meat thermometer to ensure that meat is
cooked to 175 degrees at the thickest point.
5. Carve
and Serve with a quick salad and Voila! I like to pour the juices over the yams
and chicken meat, its delicious.
6. IMPORTANT: Put
aside carcass for soup!
Chicken Brodo Soup*
Part
One:
Ingredients:
Chicken
Carcass
3
stalks of celery chopped in large pieces
2
carrots chopped in large pieces
1
white onion quartered
1
tomato quartered
Salt
and pepper
Directions: 
1. Take
a large pot and add everything except the salt and pepper. 
2. Cover with water and
bring to a boil. Then allow to simmer for 2.5 hours. (I do this after dinner,
while the kids are going down. I then leave it to cool and put it in fridge
overnight).
Part
Two:
Ingredients:
2
stalks of celery chopped into small pieces
1
chicken breast (optional, I add this if there is not much chicken left over
from the night before)
Handful
of spinach chopped
Brown
rice (optional, not paleo)
Parmegiano
(optional)
Directions:
1. The
next day bring brodo to a boil again and strain into a second pot or bowl. 
2. I then put
the carrots back in the broth and mash. I pick the chicken out of the strainer
and return to broth, I also add any left overs from the carved chicken.
3. If
there isn’t much meat left over from my meal the night before, I dice and
sautee a chicken breast and add to the soup. 
4. Sautee the spinach and celery and
add to soup. Bring to a boil and serve! 
I like to make a batch of brown rice
and add to my soup, but my husband whose diet is more restricted, omits it.
Sprinkle with parmegiano (if you can eat dairy) and eat!
*
You can also simply make the broth and have a serving of it a day. It’s all the
rage!  
Chicken Brodo Soup & Salad = YUM!
 March posts sponsored by Little Dreamers Consulting

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Gluten Free Chicken A La King

Growing up my Mum would make chicken a la king and it would get gobbled up in no time. As much as I love her recipe- condensed mushroom soup and all!- I needed to come up with a version Will could eat sans gluten. Hmmm…. So I tried my hand at making a healthy version and was beyond happy with the results. The sauce & chicken could even be tossed in a slow cooker to save time.
Yummy Mummy Recipe: Gluten Free Chicken A La King
Serves 4- 6

Ingredients:
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 medium- large onions, diced
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 green pepper, diced
3 cups mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup green peas
1 cup almond milk
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce (check for gluten in the contents)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cups rice (uncooked measurement)
Optional: 1 cup grated parmesan or goat cheese
Salt & pepper to taste
Directions:
1. Heat oil in pan on medium heat; in a separate pot, begin heating rice.
2. While oil is heating, cut the chicken breasts into chunks. When oil is heated, toss in garlic, onions, & green pepper; sauté until onions are transparent (approx 5minutes); bring rice to a boil, then cover & reduce heat; cook for 15 minutes.
3. Add spices & Worcestershire sauce to the pan, followed by the chicken. When chicken is cooked, add in a 1/2 cup of the almond milk. Cover & simmer for 10 minutes (sauce should thicken a little bit).
4. In a casserole dish layer rice on bottom & cover with chicken mix. Take the remaining 1/2 cup of almond milk & heat it in the same pan to absorb any of the remaining flavour left behind. When hot, pour over chicken. Season with salt & pepper to taste.
5. Optional: Sprinkle with cheese and bake in the oven at 325 degrees for 15  minutes
For the slow cooker/ Crock Pot:
Nice & simple! Add the veggies and spices to the pot and stir (you can skip the oil). Add chicken on top followed by all of the almond milk; stir so that chicken gets coated. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours. Just cook up the rice & you have a yummy meal ready when you get home from work!

Mmmmm delicious!
What was your favourite dish growing up? Would you ever give it a ‘healthy makeover’?
July posts sponsored by Cutie Pie Boutique

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Thai Cashew Chicken

Now that we’re into the warmer weather (YIPPEE!!!) it’s nice to have recipes that are lighter and don’t require you firing up the oven & heating up the house. A girlfriend of mine sent me this recipe and after making a few tweaks and came up with my own version. I hope your family loves it as much as mine! (PS- this is a great slow cooker idea for you busy Mamas wanting to come home to dinner ready to go! Just pop in on low for 6- 8 hours.)
Yummy Mummy Recipe: Thai Peanut Chicken
Ingredients:
Skinless chicken thighs (I find bone- in are juicier)
1/4 cup cashew butter (you can make your own by whipping up 1 cup of raw cashews with a tablespoon of coconut oil in a food processor; add a pinch of salt if you like)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch piece of ginger, minced
2 tbsp honey
2 tsbp rice vinegar
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Combine all ingredients except chicken & cilantro in a blender or food processor
3. Place chicken in a baking dish & cover with sauce; cook for approx. 30 minutes
4. Garnish with fresh cilantro & enjoy!
Serve over rice or egg noodles

Image Source: Yummy Mummy Club

June posts sponsored by Cutie Pie Boutique

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken

This is the second in my series of snappy  Yummy Mummy recipes for busy moms & families- test driven and recommended to me by some of my friends who have gone back to work and looking for delicious meal ideas they can whip up over the course of a busy work week. 
I’m excited about these recipes because I know they’ve passed the test for flavour & convenience and still hold up for nutrition. I’m so grateful to my amazing friends who have sent these recipes my way to try out. Since it was Cinco De Mayo last week, I thought I’d try out this recipe with a Mexican twist. This is a great option if you want to break out your slow cooker and come home to dinner pretty much ready to serve. Major bonus: this is a perfect warm/ hot weather dinner idea, when you’re craving lighter options that leave you feeling satisfied. Thanks to my friend Jill for sending this one my way.
Yummy Mummy Recipe: Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken
Adapted from Skinny Taste’s Embarrassingly Easy Crock Pot Salsa Chicken
Ingredients: 
Boneless/ skinless chicken breasts or thighs
1 cup salsa
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3/4 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground chipotle pepper
1 tsp chilli powder (optional)
1/2- 1 tsp cayennes (optional- to taste)
1 cup chicken stock (optional- see step 3, below)
Serve with tacos or as a taco salad with some or all of the following:
Tostadas or taco shells
Shredded lettuce
Grated cheese
Grilled corn 
Diced tomatoes
Diced onions
Diced green peppers
Diced avocados
Sour cream or Greek yogurt
Extra salsa

Directions:
1. If you want, pre- prepare your toppings such as the cheese, diced veggies & grilled corn & store in the fridge so they’re ready to go
2. Pour the salsa into the bottom of the slow cooker, followed by the chicken & season as desired
3. Cook on low for 4 hours (or add the chicken stock & cook on low for 8 hours if it’s a work day)
4. When ready, remove chicken & dice or shred & serve with your choice of toppings
This would be a great item to bring along for a pot luck lunch or picnic- just cook the chicken over night & wake up to your dish ready to go!
Image Source: Skinny Taste
May posts sponsored by Noah’s Ark Hypnotherapy

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