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Apr 21, 2014 02:41 PM

Prepping to live through a kitchen renovation

I am about to start a full kitchen renovation / addition. We are a household of 3 adults and 2 toddlers, therefore, being able to eat home-cooked dinner at home at least a few times a week is crucial. I have a fridge and a full-size sink in our laundry room, as well a bbq, rice cooker, toaster, portable induction cooktop (one burner), and microwave. Pretty much everything except an oven and multi-burner stove. With all of that, I know that I can cook most of my regular meals.

For the nights that I come home from work and need to get dinner on the table quickly,I am trying to think of things that I can fully cook and freeze, that can then be defrosted and microwaved... vs. prepped, frozen, then baked. I think I can do lasagna, meatballs, soups. Am I missing any other great ideas?

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  1. I defrosted some fully-baked enchiladas for my husband last night, and I think they were better than the first time around! Most pasta sauces will defrost very well, and then all you have to do is cook up some fresh pasta. Braised meat dishes also freeze well.

    1. It took a fortnight for our renovation. We cooked nothing and lived on what we could microwave, takeaways and restaurant meals. And we washed up the crockery in the bath!

      1. When SIL and her family moved into current house (maybe 6-8 years ago), the first thing to go was the dated late 60's kitchen. They have lots of friends "in the trades" so weren't left at the mercy of contractors for lightling, plumbing, drywall/paint, etc. BUT she was without a kitchen for a few MONTHS. House has BIG family room so that's pretty much where they lived thru the process. Off the FR is a good sized laundry/utility room. She set up 2 LONG folding table with pretty much all the cooking things you mentioned. Were replacing fridge once project was done, so had NEW, full-sized fridge freezer parked in LR for duration. Pretty sure she bought of those single burner things and KNOW she bought an extra crockpot. She said the hardest partof using the make-shift kitchen was the HEIGHT of the tables. She's relatively tall and with table being significantly lower than a standard counter-top... achin' back from time to time.

        1. There are other thread about this on chowhound.

          As I have said before, during a renovation/remodel it's less about the cooking (sounds like you have that covered) and more about the ~cleaning~.

          You have a (full-sized? double?) sink, but no dishwasher. (?). So think about ways you can reduce your dish-output.

          One-dish meals and disposable serving pieces can be your friends.
          It's so worth it in the end! Good luck.

          1. How long is you're remodel gonna take?
            Might be worth it to buy 1-2 more portable induction burners.
            Also realizing that having 2 immersion circulators and a searzall is gonna be super nice when it's remodel time, hadn't thought about that as another benefit of that gear.

            Definitely make pasta sauces. I've found that oxtail ragu freezes very well. Some curry sauces would be easy then all you have to do is cook some meat and rice.

            1 Reply
            1. re: EatFoodGetMoney

              We will be out of the kitchen for 4-6 weeks. The curry idea is brilliant. Hadn't thought of non-pasta sauces! Thanks so much!