8 Frozen Groceries I’m Buying on Repeat This Spring
The frozen food section is my favorite area in the supermarket. While I enjoy making my meals from scratch, and it’s proven that cooking can improve your relationship and help boost your mood, sometimes I’m simply too exhausted from a long day to whip out my recipe book. And well, frankly, there are dishes that I’m just not skilled enough to make. That’s where these heat-and-eat meals, ready-made snacks, and more come in. There is something for every occasion — including fancy ones.
Whether I’m feeling nostalgic or looking to try something new, I love knowing that I can open up my freezer door and find something satisfying. Or, as of right now, eight somethings. These are the frozen finds I’ve been buying on repeat this spring.
1. Rao’s Homemade Meat Lasagna
Many have labeled Rao’s, the classic Italian eatery, New York’s most exclusive restaurant. It is so exclusive that the closest I’ve come to stepping foot in it is through the freezer section at my local supermarket. Although probably not quite as close to the made-to-order Rao’s, the company’s frozen meat lasagna is one of the tastiest and heartiest frozen meals I’ve had. I’ll even say that it is better than the pasta I’ve had at some other restaurants. The sauce is rich and what you’d expect from Rao’s if you’ve ever had their jarred sauces. The large serving is a hefty portion that two can split over a nice romantic dinner at home. And it’s much easier to find a box than it is to score a reservation at the restaurant.
Buy: Rao’s Homemade Meat Lasagna, $11.89 for 27 ounces at Target
2. Golden Krust Jamaican Style Spicy Beef Patties
I thought the Jamaican beef patty was an Italian delicacy when I was a kid. I could walk into any New York pizzeria, and there it was, with its glowing orange crust sitting next to a lasagna slice and a calzone. This frozen version has the same savory beef filling, seasoned with the right spice, and the crust is perfectly flaky and fluffy. As I grew older and ventured out of my neighborhood, I saw the pastry turnovers sold in bodegas, non-Italian restaurants, and Golden Krust, an NYC-based chain specializing in Caribbean cuisine. The company’s frozen version is just as good as the fresh version.
Buy: Golden Krust Jamaican Style Spicy Beef Patties, $6.89 for 10 ounces at Instacart
3. La Fe Tostones
Making tostones can be time-consuming — the flattening, the twice-frying, and don’t get me started on peeling plantains, which I still struggle with. Thankfully, these tasty plantain discs come prepared, so all you have to do is toss them in the oven. They make great side dishes, appetizers, or even quick snacks. Don’t let the “family pack” labeling fool you; I can plow through the bag before a speck of freezer burn has a chance to appear.
Buy: Lafe Family Pack Tostones, $6.99 for 2.5 pounds at Instacart
4. El Sembrador Pandebono
Pandebono is a traditional Colombian cheese bread made from cassava starch, cheese, eggs, and cornmeal. This frozen version, from El Sembrador, puffs up perfectly, and the soft inside reminds me of the bakery version. They are best consumed warm out of the oven —when they’re at their softest — and can be eaten as dinner rolls or by themselves as a snack. I also enjoy them for breakfast with a cup of black coffee on the weekends.
Buy: El Sembrador Pandebono, prices vary for 13.2 ounces at Instacart
5. Bagel Bites
You’re probably wondering, “How old is he, 5?” But hear me out: These baby bagels topped with bits of pepperoni, cheese, and barely a teaspoon of tomato sauce are one of life’s simplest pleasures. That simplicity is what makes them so great, and they’re as convenient as they are satisfying. Instead of the microwave, I pop these bite-sized bad boys in the air fryer to make the bread nice and toasty.
Buy: Bagel Bites Cheese & Pepperoni Pizza Snacks, $4.09 for 7 ounces at Walmart
6. Deep Indian Kitchen Garlic Naan
Deep Indian Kitchen’s Garlic Naan with coriander comes complete with burnt brown spots, like it came fresh out of a 700°F tandoor oven. I’m far from a naan expert, but I’m sure making the bread in a clay oven is more complicated than the two-minute heating instructions for this frozen version. The result is a buttery, chewy, elastic bread that doubles as a delicious vehicle for scooping up all kinds of sauces.
Buy: Deep Indian Kitchen Garlic Naan, $5.41 for 8 ounces at Instacart
7. Tattooed Chef Cauliflower Mac & Cheese
This plant-based company makes food for “people who give a crop.” Its Mac & Cheese Bowl is one of my go-to meatless Monday meals when I’m in the mood for something rich and decadent. At the same time, the veggie-laden dish (the main ingredient is cauliflower) doesn’t leave me feeling too full afterward. Although not included in the instructions, I encourage you to mix everything around after heating to get the cauliflower and breadcrumbs covered and combined with the cheese. Otherwise, the cheddar cheese tends to sit on top of the dish.
Buy: Tattooed Chef Cauliflower Mac & Cheese Bowl, $5.49 for 10 ounces at Target
8. My Mochi Green Tea Ice Cream
What’s a frozen food list without dessert? These refreshing balls of ice cream wrapped in mochi dough are just what spring calls for. The soft, doughy capsule is made from rice flour and wheat flour and is light on taste, while the velvety ice cream hiding inside has a hint of sweetness that nicely balances out the subtle green tea flavor. I love that I can simply pop one of these ice cream-filled treats whenever I’m in the mood for something cool and sweet.
Buy: My Mochi Green Tea Ice Cream, $6.39 for 9.1 ounces at Target
Do you have any frozen food favorites? Tell us in the comments below.