Don’t let those fresh veggies go to waste – freeze them for crockpot soups instead! Here are some of my favorite vegetables to freeze and how I package them into little “soup starter packs.”
A few weeks ago, I realized my favorite crockpot soups are all a variation of the same recipe. They all contain:
- One pound meat (meatballs or ground beef, turkey, or sausage)
- 1-2 pounds of fresh vegetables
- 1 can beans (optional)
- 24-28oz of tomato sauce (I use a 24oz jar of pasta sauce OR a 28oz can of tomato sauce plus 1 tbsp EVOO, 2 minced garlic cloves, 1 tbsp Italian seasonings, and 1/4 tsp pepper)
- 4 cups broth
Easy, right? I can tell you that it’s absolutely delicious too!
So, when a couple of my leftover fresh vegetables were sitting in my refrigerator for over a week, I decided to go ahead and prep and freeze them as “crockpot soup starter packs.”
The more I think about it, the more I’m in love with this idea. Not only is freezing fresh vegetables for crockpot soups an easy way to keep fresh vegetables from going to waste, but you can take advantage of sales at the grocery store and stock up on veggies for soup then too!
Here are some of our favorite crockpot soup veggies:
- Yellow Squash
- Green Beans
(If you use potatoes, just make sure to freeze them right after cutting. If they’re exposed to air for too long, they’ll turn black.)
And, here’s how you can create some “crockpot soup starter packs” of your own…
How to Freeze Fresh Veggies as “Crockpot Soup Starter Packs”
Yields: One soup starter pack (I use this to make 4-6 servings of soup)
- 1-2 pounds of your favorite vegetables, washed and diced
- Combine vegetables in a quart-sized plastic freezer bag, remove as much air as possible, and store flat in your freezer for up to three months. (I use these printable freezer labels.)
- When you’re ready to use, add frozen vegetables to your crockpot with the rest of your favorite soup ingredients and cook on “low” for 8 hours or until meat is cooked through and vegetables are soft.
Oh, and here are some of my favorite crockpot soup recipes that will work great with these packs…
- Garden Veggie Soup with Ground Beef Soup
- Tomato Turkey and Vegetable Soup
- Turkey White Bean and Kale Soup
- Meatball Veggie Soup
The Spicy Sausage and Veggie Soup in my No Cook Freezer Meals cookbook is also one of our all-time favorite recipes.
Thoughts or questions? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you.