20 Freezer-to-Crock-Pot Meal Ideas

Jess Richardson | May 31, 2019 Food & Party
20 Freezer-to-Crock-Pot Meal Ideas
Image: iStock

Slow Cooker Beef Roast and Carrots
iStock

We love the idea of meal prep, but so infrequently do we want to meal prep -- it just feels like so much extra work, right? Yes, but not when it's meal prep done like this -- with these frozen meal packets, we just put together freezer bags full of raw ingredients, label them, and then the next week (or three weeks) later, we have ready-to-go frozen meal prep packets. Before bedtime the night before, we just have to choose a ready-to-go meal, toss in in the fridge to defrost, then throw in the Crock-Pot in the morning, and bam -- dinner is ready. Some of them -- mostly the soups -- can even go directly from the freezer straight to the slow cooker. Because it's just throwing together raw ingredients, we tend to do a bunch at once -- it ends up being about 30 minutes of work that can leads to several weeks' worth of ready-to-cook meals. 

The other great part is that these freezer meals really taste fresh because they weren't cooked first and are being reheated -- it's their first time being cooked, and they all taste like it, too! We focused mainly on delicious, healthy freezer meals that will be amazing in the slow cooker. That's why the primary proteins are chicken, beef, pork, and veggie-based -- there's something about the delicate nature of fish that just doesn't do well going from the freezer to the slow cooker. 

When it comes to fast weeknight options, there's really nothing we love more than a slow cooker meal -- it's such an easy, low-rush, set-it-and-forget process. We used to think about slow cookers as being good for winter only, since they tend to be used for stews, but check out these great warm-weather options. For slow-cooker meals anytime, take a peek at Crock-Pot dinners kids can serve themselves.

  • Freezer Asian Peanut Chicken

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    Freezer Asian Peanut Chicken
    iStock

    This recipe for freezer Asian peanut chicken is so incredibly versatile -- and there are low-carb and vegan options, too! The marinade doubles as a dressing (just keep some separate from the raw meat), and the flavors are sure to be a hit with the whole family.

  • Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

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    Slow Cooker Pulled Pork {Freezer Meal}
    iStock

    Everyone loves a good pulled pork, and this slow cooker pulled pork makes this great weekend treat available on a weeknight! Serve with rolls for pulled pork sandwiches, and some sauteed green beans on the side. 

  • Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

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    Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef (Freezer Meal)
    iStock

    We have yet to find kids who don't absolutely love this recipe for slow cooker Mongolian beef. Serve it over either rice or noodles, and it's amazing with a side dish of lightly braised greens in garlic and sesame oil, which takes about three minutes on the stovetop. 

  • Detox Crock-Pot Lentil Soup

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    Freezer Meal Detox Crockpot Lentil Soup
    iStock

    Yes, this recipe for freezer meal detox Crock-Pot lentil soup has the word "detox" in it, but don't worry, it still tastes like real food -- it's just also extremely healthy and packed with tons of good veggies. The recipe only calls for a teaspoon of spices, but we double that because we love the extra flavor. 

  • Slow Cooker Caesar Pork Chops & Potatoes

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    Slow Cooker Caesar Pork Chops and Potatoes
    iStock

    This recipe for slow cooker Caesar pork chops and potatoes is exactly what we want when we don't even want to think of side dishes for ourselves -- the author has come up with every single possible element, and it all tastes wonderful together.

  • Crock-Pot Stuffed Peppers Recipe

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    Crock Pot Stuffed Peppers Recipe (5 ingredients!)
    iStock

    We adore this Crock-Pot stuffed peppers recipe because it's so incredibly easy. The recipe calls for ground turkey, but subbing ground chicken or beef would work, too. Definitely recommend brown rice for freezing purposes!

  • Slow Cooker Chicken Curry Recipe

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    Slow Cooker Chicken Curry Recipe
    iStock

    We love a good curry. Try this slow cooker chicken curry recipe for days when being stressed out about cooking is the last thing that we need. Make ahead and freeze rice to go with it, or make that part fresh in the rice cooker alongside!

  • Slow Cooker Vegan Sweet & Sour Tempeh

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    OK, hear us out: this recipe for slow cooker vegan sweet and sour tempeh may sound a little bit like hippie nonsense, but it's a lovely vegetarian meal that tastes just like everybody's favorite Chinese take-out order (and is about a million times healthier). 

  • Slow Cooker Pork Chops With Apples & Sweet Potatoes

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    Slow Cooker Pork Chops with Apples and Sweet Potatoes
    iStock

    This recipe for slow cooker pork chops with apples and sweet potatoes is so incredibly easy and produces a meal that feels like it took a lot more work than just ten minutes of prep. Works well with any apple, but the tart firmness of Granny Smiths are extra good!

  • Wild Rice Soup

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    Freezer Meal Wild Rice Soup
    iStock

    We love this cozy, healthy, flavorful chicken freezer meal wild rice soup -- and the fact that it can go directly from the freezer to the slow cooker definitely earns it points. Rarely is the step of moving a bag from the freezer to the fridge too much for us, but let's be real, it does totally happen.

  • Crock-Pot Beef & Mushrooms

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    Crockpot Beef and Mushrooms Freezer Meal Recipe
    iStock

    This Crock-Pot beef and mushrooms freezer meal recipe is fine on its own, but upgrade it substantially by substituting canned mushrooms for fresh, and canned mushroom soup for fresh mushroom soup -- basically, just saute an onion and some broken-up mushrooms in some butter until it smells great, add 1 tablespoon of flour and stir for a couple of minutes, then add in some chicken broth and milk and keep stirring, and voila!

  • Super Easy Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan Recipe

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    Super Easy Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan Recipe
    iStock

    This recipe for super easy slow cooker chicken Parmesan might literally be the absolutely easiest recipe for chicken Parm we've ever even heard of -- and it tastes absolutely great. We add garlic and a splash of red wine to ours, too.

  • Slow Cooker Beef Roast & Carrots

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    Slow Cooker Beef Roast and Carrots
    iStock

    This tender, juicy recipe for slow cooker beef roast and carrots is so delicious, especially served with mashed potatoes or over quinoa, rice, or brown rice. Especially tasty with some braised greens. 

  • Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

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    Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore
    iStock

    This recipe for slow cooker chicken Cacciatore takes just 10 minutes of active time and creates a super healthful, delicious slow cooker meal that takes basically no effort to prepare -- other than boiling pasta for serving.

  • Slow Cooker Smoky Turkey Chili 

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    Slow Cooker Smoky Turkey Chili
    iStock

    This is such an easy assembly recipe for slow cooker smoky turkey chili -- the only thing that has to be done before throwing it all in a freezer bag is brown the turkey. So good served with a little cornbread!

  • Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff

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    Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff
    iStock

    This recipe for Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff is incredibly easy. Just combine ingredients in a freezer bag and stuff in the freezer in a shape that fits in the slow cooker. Then when it's time to cook, add a cup of water and some mushrooms, and hit the play button.  

  • Slow Cooker Shredded Hawaiian Chicken Sandwiches

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    Slow Cooker Shredded Hawaiian Chicken Sandwiches
    iStock

    These slow cooker shredded Hawaiian chicken sandwiches work so well to bring to a barbecue or serve at home on a rainy day. Pair with a little side salad or cole slaw for some veggies!

  • Low-Carb Chili 

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    Low Carb Chili Recipe (No Beans)
    iStock

    For anyone doing a keto or Paleo diet, this low carb chili recipe hits the spot. Serve with cheese, sour cream, and cilantro, or replace the sour cream with 2% Greek yogurt for added protein and lower fat. 

  • Slow Cooker Creamy Ranch Chicken

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    Slow Cooker Creamy Ranch Chicken
    iStock

    This slow cooker creamy ranch chicken is so perfectly, juicily tender. We love it served with green beans lightly tossed with garlic powder and olive oil, baked on a cookie sheet in the oven at 425 F for about 10-15 minutes, or until they just start to shrivel.

  • Slow Cooker Chickpea Tortilla Soup 

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    Slow Cooker Chickpea Tortilla Soup
    iStock

    This recipe for slow cooker chickpea tortilla soup is similar to a chicken tortilla soup, but it's a great, healthy vegetarian meal -- and it freezes absolutely beautifully. Chickpeas really retain their shape and texture in the freezer. 

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