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Don't Panic - Dinner's in the Freezer: Great-Tasting Meals You Can Make Ahead Paperback – September 1, 2005

4.2 out of 5 stars 500 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

100,000 copies sold!


"I'm hungry. What's for dinner?"

How do you respond to this question after a long, busy day? Head for the nearest fast-food restaurant? Pop a commercially prepared meal into the oven?

Or you could have . . .

Apricot-Glazed Chicken Tenders and Cashew Fudge Tarts
Colorado White Chili and Chocolate-Orange Crumb Cake
Turkey Picante Pie and Tomato and Leek Bisque
Beef Chimichangas and Gooey Caramel Cinnamon Rolls

You're probably thinking, Yeah, right! But delicious recipes like these are just minutes away!

Don't Panic-Dinner's in the Freezer offers a simple and economical alternative to take-out and prepackaged foods, featuring dozens of quick and easy home-tested recipes designed to be prepared in quantity and frozen ahead. Whether you cook for one or for a large family, this unique method will simplify your life with healthy, money- and time-saving recipes. Once you try the Don't Panic method, you may never again go back to your old ways of cooking.


"How great it is to know that at the end of a busy day, I do not need to think about dinner-it's in the freezer! You too will become a convert to the Don't Panic approach."-Marita Littauer, author and president, CLASServices, Inc.

About the Author

Susie Martinez is a professional counselor with a private counseling practice in Colorado. She has been married to her husband, Joe, for twenty-two years and has two teenage children. Susie adores her family, her Kitchen Aid mixer, and her purple PT Cruis
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Revell; Original edition (September 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800730550
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800730550
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (500 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,651 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By kiwanissandy VINE VOICE on January 25, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What I like about this cookbook is the recipes have you freeze the dish before cooking it. For me, what I don't like about some of the other OAMC (once a month cooking) cookbooks is they have you cook it first, then freeze and when you unthaw it it's mush. This cookbook has you assemble all the ingredients first, freeze it and then day of serving you thaw and cook. Very much the same as dream dinners.com. (without the hefty price tag). Have loved the cranberry chicken, chicken cacciatore and the buttermilk herb chicken breasts. We eat mostly chicken but there are beef, pork and even desserts recipes. Serving suggestions are offered though not as many as I'd like. Very good cookbook, worthy investment and I don't give my praise lightly.
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The book is well laid out, the format easy to read and explained in great detail. However, the first recipe I tried called for sour cream to be added to the ingredients prior to freezing, didn't specify to thaw the recipe, and was designed for the crock-pot. Well, everything my mother taught me about, "Don't freeze sour cream because it will separate," and "Don't put sour cream in the crock-pot until the last 30 minutes or it will curdle," it turns out Mom was right! It began with the recipe not going into the crock-pot properly, because it wasn't thawed. Once it was finished thawing, it was separated and watery, and by the end of the cooking time in the crock-pot, what wasn't soupy was curdled. Smelled great, but I couldn't get the sauce to come back together. I'm not giving up on the book yet, but be warned - listen to your instincts! If something sounds wrong, try to see if there is a way for you to adapt it to work around the problem! Also, I would recommend what I am doing - I am making all of the recipes that sound good or interesting for the smallest amount first, so if we don't like it, I'm not stuck with several containers of it in the freezer! Good luck to everyone who buys the book!
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I'm a pre-clinical medical student, and often don't have time to mess around with dinner when I get home, especially during exam times. Using this book, I've been able to eat really well on the one night's worth of cooking I did at the beginning of the semester! I tried the spinach lasagna and beef stroganoff recipes this time around, and have been really happy with both of them. I find that I want to alter the recipes a little bit, but I think that has more to do with my needs and tastes than any problem with the recipes themselves.

The other nice thing is that this is one of the few cookbooks I have been able to adapt as far as portion size without any trouble at all. I am single and end up cooking for myself. With this cookbook, that's no problem. I froze the lasagnas into smaller pans (and then took them out, thank you for that technique!!) for a dinner and lunch leftovers helping, and portioned out the stroganoff into single-serving sizes as well. No wasted food and no headaches. Fantastic!

I also made this whole batch of food (which included a fair amount besides these two recipes) from one shopping excursion of about $100. I haven't had to go grocery shopping to any substantial degree in a month, other than for salad greens, cat food, noodles, or that last minute ice cream craving. This is VERY nice for both my financial budget and my time budget!

All in all, I credit this book for saving me some serious time, money, and stress. I'm going to end up taking what I learn in making these recipes up to freeze and applying them to my other favorite recipes, too, which just makes it doubly valuable as far as I'm concerned.
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This cookbook is the best freezer cookbook out there. The receipes are easy and kid friendly (a plus in my house)plus they are easy to adapt to your own tastes. I easily made 15 meat based dinners in less than 3 hours. A plus to this book over others is that many of the recipes are simply assembled and then cooked on serving day which I prefer to cooking and then thawing/reheating which can degrade the texture of many foods. I would recommend this cookbook to anyone looking to start freezer cooking or those looking for new and good recipes
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Say goodbye to boring recipes. This book as an amazing variety of entres, and many have a gourmet taste and appearance without bizarre, hard-to-find ingredients.

The best things about this book:

1) A very practical freezer method using bags instead of baking dishes or plastic containers. By using the freezer bags and "flash freezing" the food into various, stackable shapes, you can maximize your freezer space and make cooking or reheating the food easier later.

2)The majority of the dishes aren't cooked at all until after you defrost them. This makes them taste incredibly fresh on the day you serve them. You simply assemble them before hand, then freeze them in order to cook them later.

3) This method of cooking definitely saves time. By preparing multiple meals at once, you dramatically reduce your overall preparation time. Furthermore, you've got the convenience of getting a meal out of your freezer the night before, letting it defrost in your fridge, and then simply letting the oven do the cooking or reheating while you tend to your children, chores, or work.

4) Buying "loss leaders" on sale at the grocery store and cooking them in bulk really does save money!

5) The variety of recipes.

6) The flexibility. The author encourages you to change up the recipes according to your family's tastes and package them according to your family's size.

The worst things about this book:

1) It should be spiral bound so it can lie flat.

2) I'm a lover of free-range, grass-fed, antibiotic-free, hormone-free meats. Finding my type of meat on sale is rare, and buying it already cut (i.e. chicken breasts) is usually never cheap. Most of the chicken recipes call for breasts. A few can be adapted to use shredded chicken (what I've got if I buy the chicken whole from farmers), but most cannot. Perhaps I should just learn how to properly butcher a chicken.
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