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Stay-at-Home Cooking: Top 5 Healthy Freezer-Friendly Meals

Posted on April 6th, 2020
Stay at Home Cooking: Top 5 Easy Freezer-Friendly Meals

Many of us are isolated at home, which has caused some challenges and opportunities when it comes to cooking. You may be learning new recipes and techniques or getting creative with limited ingredients.

After day 10 of being at home, you may be asking yourself—what should I eat next? There are engaging ways to learn how to cook, even from home. If you are struggling—or interested in learning something new—you can always try online resources like Instructables or Tasty.

Having a balanced diet is important in maintaining overall health and improving eyesight. FYidoctors has compiled a list of five freezable eye-healthy meals, for you and your family to make at home.

1. Nutrient Rich Minestrone Soup

Serves 2

This comforting soup is packed with flavour and nutrients. The tomatoes are rich in vitamin A, while carrots include beta-carotene—a substance that itself converts into vitamin A which helps protect the surface of your eyes by strengthening barriers to bacteria and viruses. Kidney beans are a source of Zinc, which helps your body absorb vitamin A. All this is excellent for your vision, and it’s a one pot recipe that can be easily frozen to enjoy at a later time.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • ½ a yellow onion, diced
  • 2 ½ cups of diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups of chicken broth
  • 2 cups of kidney beans
  • ½ cup elbow pasta
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

In a large pot, brown the onion, carrots and celery. Add the kidney beans then add the diced tomatoes. Pour the chicken broth in and let everything come to a simmer. Add the elbow pasta and cook until noodles are al dente. Add oregano and salt and pepper to taste.

2. Lentil and Black Bean Burgers

Serves 4

Beans are powerful when it comes to eye health! Lentils and black beans are rich in Zinc, a mineral that helps produce Vitamin A in your body. Try this vegetarian take on a hamburger for a healthy alternative to a fun classic.

Ingredients

  • 14 oz can of red lentils
  • 14 oz can of black beans
  • ½ cup bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ diced white onion
  • ¼ cup minced parsley
  • 1 sliced tomato
  • 4 slices of American cheese
  • 4 hamburger buns

Instructions

Wash lentils and black beans in cold water, then dry on a pan with a paper towel. In a large bowl crush the dried lentils and black beans. Combine with breadcrumbs, egg, onion and parsley until the mixture is sticky and moldable. Form the mixture into 4 hamburger patties and set on a plate. Put the plate into the fridge for 20 minutes until the shape is firm and holds together. Heat a pan with olive oil. Fry each patty on both sides until browned. Assemble your burgers in their buns with cheese and tomato (and whatever fixing you enjoy)!

3. Savoury Tuna and Pea Casserole

Serves 4

This healthy entrée is comforting and easy to freeze for later. Tuna is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids which can help adults prevent age-related macular degeneration. Peas are also excellent for vision because they contain the carotenoid pigment lutein, which can reduce the risk of cataracts.

Ingredients

  • 4 (4 oz) cans of tuna, drained
  • 1 cup of frozen peas
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp chili flakes
  • 400g of macaroni pasta of choice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs

Instructions

Bring a large pot of water to boil and add the dried macaroni, let cook for 8-10 minutes or until al dente. Once noodles are cooked combine all the ingredients in a large bowl. Spread evenly in a 12in x 12in pan and sprinkle breadcrumbs on the surface. Bake in a 350°F for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown.

4. Healthy Green Pepper Breakfast Burrito

Serves 4

This is a simple dish that goes a long way! The green peppers are excellent for your vision because they contain both Vitamin A and lutein. Black beans are also a terrific source of zinc.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup of grated cheddar cheese
  • 4 large whole grain tortillas
  • ¼ of a red onion thinly sliced
  • ½ cup rinsed and dried black beans
  • ½ cup chopped green pepper

Instructions

Lay all the tortillas out on a clean surface. Portion all the remaining ingredients between the four tortillas in an even line horizontally across each.  Wrap the burrito by folding in the sides, then folding up the bottom end over the filling. Roll the cylinder up tightly. Package the burritos with aluminum foil to either freeze for later or to heat up in your oven!

5. Fresh Chocolate Banana Smoothie

Serves 2

Treat yourself to an eye-healthy smoothie for breakfast. The bananas are a rich source of Vitamin A, while the coconut milk will charge you with a mighty dose of antioxidants.

Ingredients

  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 tbsp almond butter (or nut butter of choice)
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • 1 tbsp hemp hearts (optional)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup water (or until you've reached desired thickness)
  • Optional: Add a dash of pure peppermint extract to make it a mint chocolate smoothie

Instructions

Add all ingredients to a blender. Start by pulsing on low and slowly increase the speed. If the mixture is too thick, add water to loosen. You can also freeze this mixture in an airtight container as a healthy substitute to ice cream!

Freezable meals are convenient, especially if you have to a make a large volume and may not have the chance to visit a grocery store regularly. When you freeze your meals, remember to use freezable containers or bags to keep your food tasting fresh. You can double any of these recipes to scale how much you want to make and save for later.

FYidoctors hopes these recipes will spark your imagination in the kitchen while you’re at home and potentially struggling for new ideas to cook for your family.

Feel free to get creative! These recipes are guidelines and we encourage you to swap out ingredients for what you have on hand.

For even more eye-healthy recipes check out our recipes page on our blog.

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