Winter warmers that are perfect for batch cooking

We all lead busy lives and when it comes to food, the temptation can be to turn to ready-made or processed foods, but you don’t need to. With a little planning, a slow cooker and a freezer, you can batch cook delicious, healthy meals that can be frozen and simply defrosted and warmed up when needed.

Recipe ideas

A tagine originates from North Africa and is basically a stew made of meat, vegetables and spices. Traditionally, lamb is used, but you could easily opt for a vegetarian version using chickpeas and butternut squash. Packing in other vegetables such as onions and courgettes, along with tinned tomatoes, can make this meal count as a whopping four of your five a day.

Chilli is simple to batch cook and it can be served in loads of different ways to add a bit of variety. Try it on a jacket potato, with rice or in a wrap. If you or one of your family isn’t keen on kidney beans, try substituting them with baked beans.

Pizza is always a firm favourite, but the fat and calorie count can be quite high to have it regularly, so why not try a cauliflower base? You will not only cut the calories, but it will count as one of your five a day.

Curries are another great option, you can spice it up or keep it cool and creamy to suit your own taste.

Recipe ideas

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Equipment you will need

According to the Huffington Post, the most magical piece of equipment any kitchen can have is a freezer, and it will certainly make batch cooking more cost effective to have one.

Many families, in particular, opt for a large chest freezer, such as the commercial refrigeration supplied by, but if you’re on your own or have limited space, a small box freezer will suffice.

A slow cooker is also really handy as it allows you prepare the basics in advance, then simply throw it all in the pot and cook overnight or while you’re at work.

Go on, ditch the ready meals and try batch cooking a few tasty winter warmers to fill up your freezer, then kick back and enjoy some me time, safe in the knowledge that your meals for the next week or so are sorted.

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