In my house, there has to be something quick and easy in the freezer at all times that can be microwaved for lunch or a snack. If there’s not, spur-of-the-moment hunger pangs at unusual times of the day can lead to unhealthy and expensive trips through the drive-thru. I used to keep a stash of chicken patties, hot pockets or frozen burritos on hand, but I’ve been trying to eliminate all convenience food from our diets, so for a while I was at a loss at what to do. Then I devised these hot pocket knock-offs. They’ve been a godsend–they are the perfect vehicle to use up little bits of leftover meat, veggies or sauce, they freeze beautifully, and they heat up in 60-90 seconds!
Using homemade dough, leftover meat and sale-priced cheese, I can make a batch (about 14) of these for around $3.50. That’s less than 30 cents per pocket! And trust me, these are super easy to bake up.
You can either use a bread machine to mix this or knead it out by hand. Either way, let the dough rest for around 10 minutes when you’re through mixing/kneading.
4 cups flour
3 TBS oil
1 TBS sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup of room temperature water
scant 1/4 cup of milk
2 teaspoons yeast
- Lightly mix flour, sugar and salt and mound on a floured countertop (I sometimes do my initial mixing in a large bowl). Add water, milk, oil and yeast in the center.
- Gently mix till a dough starts to form.
- Knead for around 7 minutes until dough ball is smooth and easily workable.
- Let rest for 10 minutes.
- Divide dough into 14 balls for 14 hot pockets
- Roll out into a rectangle and fill with cheese and meat of your choice
- Fold long sides over, then tops. Gently press or pinch to seal.
- Place onto a lightly greased baking sheet seam-side down and sprinkle with Italian seasoning and parmesan cheese.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes (tops should be slightly golden brown)
- You can eat them immediately, or freeze for later. To reheat, microwave for 60-90 seconds.
I fill these with leftover meatballs, sauce and cheese (after we’ve had a spaghetti dinner), leftover sliced or cubed ham with some cheddar cheese, or leftover shredded chicken with a bit of buffalo sauce and mozzarella. These would also be great with scrambled eggs, cheese and bulk sausage for quick breakfasts! To freeze, I put 1 or 2 into zippered freezer bags so they can be taken to work for lunch quickly.
Anybody else have any homemade frozen convenience food ideas that keep them away from fast food joints? Please share in the comment section!