I CAN’T Cook So Let’s Celebrate Frozen Foods Month!

I am not a food blogger. This much could probably be gathered in about five minutes of reading posts; I do love food, eat pretty healthy, know quite a bit about sports nutrition, but play by the ‘run hard, eat hard’ game as well…if I want me my Pop-Tarts I’m going to eat them by the package-full and have my Ben & Jerry’s by the pints.
eating cotton candy
The catch…I can’t cook. When I say I can’t cook that in itself is an understatement, I was told by my Ugandan friend, Grace, that I’ll never, ever get married because of this. (Oh, the beauty of the cultural gender gap.)

That said, I’m the microwave queen. I will find a way to nuke anything to avoid having to rope in the oven or any other appliance. Because of this frozen foods are my friend, and wouldn’t you know that March is Frozen Food Month! This itty bit of fooddom is closer to my arena so I thought I’d toss up a few beauties from the frozen food aisle.

* Frozen veggies. Fresh fruits and veggies are getting insanely expensive and interestingly enough because of advanced flash-frozen methods the frozen veggies in fact retain more of their natural micronutrients better than the fresh or canned varieties. Through other cooking methods some of the vitamins and minerals can be lost, one way to reduce how much is lost is to not over-cook things. Anyways, with frozen veggies you can toss them in a micro-safe dish, add some water, and nuke away. Tips to help retain as much vitamins while microwaving: don’t use too much water, just enough to fill the bottom of the bowl and then only heat them up until they are warm and edible, not limp and soggy.

* Frozen fruits. Same thing as above, but getting in these healthy staples are sometimes tough for people so having them in the freezer limits the excuses for not eating them. Strawberries or peaches are awesome with cottage cheese and lots of people go the smoothie route too. With frozen fruits you don’t have all the added sugars from canned versions.
shrimp
* Shrimp the Bubba Gump Way. I LOVE shrimp…but dang, those babies are expensive!! Getting them in the frozen bags is a little more economical and shrimp are LOADED with protein. I could litearlly eat my weight in shrimp…bring them on, just watch out for their poop veins. ;)

* Boca me, Baby. I’m not a huge meat person (I like anything under the sea but as for land animals it’s really only chicken or turkey for this girl.) but the faux meats these days taste quite yummy. We should all thank the trending vegetarianism and vegan lifestyles for making companies hop on that one…hehe. Boca Burgers are my top pick because they taste great and have more protein than similar fake meat patties. Their sausage links are also making my belly happy…along with some frozen chocolate chip waffles!

* Frozen Entrees. Like I said I CAN’T cook. I do eat my fair share and then some of frozen entrees. I know it’s not the healthiest, but I do seek out the healthier versions…I’m not downing the Hungry Mans or such…honestly in the end it’s more about being an informed consumer. I’ll toss out some of my fav’s and tips here:

Szechuan Style Stir Fry with Shrimp from Lean Cuisine: I told you I’m a sea food girl and you’ll get 11 grams of protein per box. Of course one is way too dinky so go with two at a time and the Lean Cuisine brand has come a long way, they now include lots of veggies too, reduced the sodium levels, and have some with brown rice and whole grains.

Chicken Santa Fe from Smart Ones: Here is where I ‘stretch’ my cooking fortitude. This is basically spicified chicken with tomatoes, onions, and zucchinis…so I nuke this and use it for the base of my burritos or tacos. With 20 grams of protein you can then add black beans, the tortilla, rice…anything else, go wild.

Amy’s Kitchen: The whole Amy’s line is a great one for the organic shopper or for anyone with certain allergies. I don’t think you could go wrong, I particularly like the Tofu and Brown Rice Bowl and she’s got some frozen pockets as well as fruit stuffed toaster pastries.

Watch the sodium: With the frozen meals usually sodium can be an issue so do be aware of that. I’ll admit I’m not a big sodium watcher because I sweat a lot of it out but if you’ve got heart or other health issues you should be careful.

Double time: Like I said, the healthier frozen meals can be too low in calories and portion sizes for us exercise obsessed so either go for two (or more…hehe) at a time or add in other sides.
frozen yogurt eater
* Frozen treats. Shout out to Ben and Jerry again, my top picks are the Half Baked or Phish Food flavors. If I can’t find the Half Baked then your standard Cookie Dough will suffice in a pinch…but if you leave even a droplet of it in the pint you are a weenie and need to start training your ice cream eating abilities like you do your running. ;) Hehe.

The thing is, for athletes and people who ask their bodies to DO things for them, you do have to fuel yourself right. I certainly urge you to live/eat outside of the frozen foods aisle but also know that can be tough for people; that’s why having frozen vegetables, fruits, meats, and healthy foods on hand can help.

I hope you can glean a bit from all that and for those who CAN cook, feel free to laugh at me, my friends and family do it already…or, even better come over and cook for me. ;)

1) What are some of the things that stock your freezer? Do you buy may frozen foods?

2) Are you a big actual cooker person and know how to work outside the microwave? What are some of your go-to dishes or meals?

3) What are some of the things you do look for in the foods you make or eat? (ie: protein, salt, calories, vegan, etc.)

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13 Comments

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13 Responses to I CAN’T Cook So Let’s Celebrate Frozen Foods Month!

  1. nahhh you just need to find a man that’s a good cook! :-P bahaha. Frozen food is legit though, even though I happen to be blessed with culinary skills, I really depended on the frozen stuff in college. especially fruits and veggies, I hate spending $$ on the fresh stuff and then not eating them in time. And YES to fake meats, I lvoe the Boca Bruschetta Burgers, aaaand waffles too. chicken and chicken sausage were staples for me in college too, and I buy bagels in bulk and freeze them so they won’t get stale wooo!

  2. I lived in a hotel for three months while we were building our house and ONLY had the microwave to cook with. It was tough! I ate a lot of frozen meals with added microwave rice and veggies to the side to up the calories.

  3. For some reason your blog dropped off of my blogroll, I don’t know what the heck happened and when it happened…but it did. I think that I’ve missed quite a few of your awesome postings and drawings, sad :(

    My hubby is the king of “cooking” frozen prepared items. When I’m not around he doesn’t know what to eat and usually eats either a frozen pizza or pretzels for dinner. But I love to cook, and since I used to be a professional chef I find it easier then most people I think.

    • oh no!! i’m sorry for the techie mishap…i dunno wat happened. maybe try taking it off and re-adding my blog?? i heard some other people say that my posts weren’t updating in their Google Readers, i tried to fix that one…oh, i hate tech probs! lol.

      but i’m glad u stopped by and i sound exactly like ur poor hubby!! haha :P

  4. Julia @ pain, pride and perseverance

    oh hey there. just terrible friend me here. dang it. why can i suddenly not realize that you are updating ALL the time and I am missing out. i feel like i suck at blogging lately…and if a post does not show up on my sidebar blogroll…i just miss it completely. i am going to work on it. seriously. i am sure i have missed a ton over here on your blog which makes me sad because i always learn SO MUCH.

    loved this post. i am not necessarily a huge frozen foods girl. i spend WAY too much money on produce every month. but i can relate to the not so much of a meat person and I have been loving the boca burgers! so quick and easy :) i also love healthy choice meals, the bbq chicken lean cuisine meal and recently tried the Amy’s stuff!

    thanks for your comment today…it reminded me that I am missing out :) hope you are doing well!!!!!!!!

    • u are NOT a terrible friend….haha, oh u’re too cute! u have been CRAZY busy over there!! again, with this disappearing blogroll, i dunno wat the heck is up, i guess Blogger and Google hate me. :(

      glad u liked the post and even tho u can relate, i’m happier that u are NOT chained only to the micro and can cook…hehe. :)

  5. Amy

    I am not a huge frozen foods person – probably out of luck of circumstance though. There is always someone home and willing to cook in our house. That being said we do rely on frozen peas (sometimes eaten as a snack right out of the freezer…), frozen berries as the season is so short here, and we also store a lot of things in the freezer such as bread, some cheeses, and flour (keeps weevils away).
    Oh, and there’s always ice cream….
    My go to meal is always salad!!
    Not your boring old salads though – I love looking through the fridge and seeing what could possibly be tossed together and topped by some delicious dressing (or go nude, depending on what I find).
    Roasted vegetables with lightly sautéed chickpeas and feta is always another option or a massive stir fry.
    If I’m cooking for the omnivores in the house – spaghetti, meatballs, roasted meats and vegetables, fresh home made pizza with their choice of toppings – basically it’s anyone’s guess what will be put on the table.
    Then dessert comes around :)

    • oh i KNOW that u can cook and back like none other…u are always making me drool and i get doubly disappointed i could never re-create!! haha.

      hmmm, and now reading thru ur comment i am VERY hungry!!! :)

  6. You’re shrimp illustration made me laugh out loud!! I’m with you, I’m not a foodie but I love to eat. Frozen veggies, boca burgers and frozen fruit are my besties. I don’t buy frozen fruit I buy fresh fruit by the bags – grapes, bananas, pineapple, even apples. I cut them up, put in tupperware and freeze. I eat this all day long and usually before I go to bed too. It’s like a constant calorie supply. I stirfry when I can actually cook outside the microwave – it’s easy. I do frozen veggies and tofu or veggies and egg. It’s easy and soooo good. Or my favorite go to is to dump frozen veggies in a bowl and cover with cling wrap. I nuke em and then pour jarred marinara sauce into the bowl and if I have tofu already made that too, sprinkle nutritional yeast on top. Heat and eat. MY FAVE. Its so ghetto but I love it.

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