Purchase ground beef and chicken in bulk when it's on sale. Then cook the meat in bulk before freezing, suggests Mary Ann Kelley of Menus4Moms.com, a website offering weekly dinner menus and cooking resources.
"Getting dinner on the table is a lot faster when you don't have to prepare raw meat as part of the process, and with freezer space at a premium, cooked meat takes up less than half the space to store as opposed to raw meat," Kelley says. If you sautee peppers and onions alongside the meat, you'll cut out a step on a busy weeknight and clear out your fridge.
Leftover soups also freeze well as long as they're not cream-based or already have been cooked with pasta or rice. If so, they'll get mushy. However, tomato-based sauces freeze well. By making food preservation part of your routine, summer's (on-sale, in-season) fruit can be frozen in freezer bags and used for smoothies.