We often turn to our freezer for family-friendly dinner ideas when we don’t have time to cook (frozen pizza or mac and cheese to the rescue), or when we want to finish a meal with a quick side dish, like microwaving a bag of frozen peas or rice.
But what if you thought about your freezer stash a little differently, as a jumping off point for a more exciting meal? With everything from frozen potatoes in just about every form to a rainbow of frozen greens and vegetables, the freezer gives you a head start to any recipe. Add in your favorite Hidden Valley ranch products — and a few other pantry staples — to get you a delicious freezer casserole.
Make-ahead freezer meals might be as simple as sprinkling some ranch seasoning on frozen vegetables and roasting them in the oven; or digging a little deeper in the kitchen to make a full meal.
Here is a recipe for one of the best ways to use tater tots — a crispy, cheesy chicken and potato casserole — plus links to a few other frozen vegetable recipes that use up what’s already in your icebox, and save in the freezer for future meals.
Ranch Chicken Tater Tot Casserole
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes
1 can (10.5 oz.) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
½ cup milk
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 package (1 oz.) Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Salad Dressing & Seasoning mix
3 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 32-ounce bag frozen tater tots
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 13x9-inch baking dish.
In a mixing bowl, stir the condensed soup, sour cream, milk, 1 cup of the cheese, dressing mix and chicken together.
Place half of the frozen potatoes in a single layer on the bottom of the baking dish. Spread the chicken mixture over the potatoes, and top with remaining tater tots.
Bake for 35–40 minutes. Remove casserole and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake another 15 minutes or so until cheese is melted and potatoes are golden brown. Serve warm.