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Chiller thriller: Quick and affordable recipes using frozen favourites

From ice to ‘nice’, Lisa Faulkner whips up three quick-prep midweek meals, making use of some nifty freezer favourites

Wednesday 22 February 2023 08:55 GMT
A favourite freezer-raid recipe
A favourite freezer-raid recipe (Hannah Hughes)

As the cost-of-living crisis continues to wreak havoc, MasterChef winner and Weekend Kitchen presenter Lisa Faulkner has rounded up her top “chiller thriller” freezer hacks to make use of some nifty frozen favourites.

She’s also partnered with Ocado to whip up three quick-to-prep and affordable midweek dinner recipes, including a hearty high-protein feta, garlic crouton and vegetable salad, a super-speedy Thai prawn, butternut and spinach curry and a crispy chicken traybake using Rice Krispies.

Chiller thriller hacks

Frozen spinach

I always have a bag as I can add it to soups or even a pack of supernoodles to get some healthy veg into a lot of dishes. Stir through mash potato, add to chickpeas for dhal, serve with a frozen fishcake for a quick freezer dinner… the list goes on.

Veg nearing its sell-by date

I empty my fridge drawers and find all the oldish bits of veg that are left – carrots, leeks, broccoli – I chop these up and put them in a freezer bag. I’ll make fridge raid soup or add it to stews. It means I always have veg of some sort in my freezer.

Fruit that’s seen better days

I do exactly the same with berries, apples and grapes and use these to make smoothies.


I break up any brown bananas that the family have vetoed because they are too old. I freeze them and make cheat’s ice cream with a splash of yoghurt or banana cake.


I know it seems like a faff but if a recipe calls for breadcrumbs, its great to have some in a bag in the freezer. I take bread crusts and last bits of baguette and whizz them in food processor. They don’t need to be defrosted and add crunch to a pasta bake or mac and cheese or they can be used for breaded chicken or fish.

Cookie dough

I like to make a double batch of cookie dough, one to cook straight away and one to roll into a sausage shape and place in the freezer in clingfilm or greaseproof paper. Slice off a few rounds and cook it for a quick sweet treat fix when someone is having a bad day!

Herbs and ginger

I freeze most fresh herbs, some freeze better than others but they keep their taste even if they don’t look good! Parsley, chives, coriander all freeze .


The crunch bunch: crispy chicken traybake

This is one of my favourite freezer-raid recipes. The puffed rice cereal gives a lovely crunchy coating to the chicken, and you can use whatever veg you have lurking in your freezer.

Serves: 4

Hands-on time: 10 mins | Total time: 45 mins


100g puffed rice cereal (we used Rice Krispies)

500g mini chicken breast fillets

4 tbsp mayonnaise

300g baby potatoes, halved or quartered

170g Ocado Own Range Frozen Supersweet Sweetcorn

400g Ocado Own Range Frozen Broccoli Florets

300g Picard Frozen Sliced Leeks

100ml chicken stock

150g full-fat crème fraîche

1 tbsp dijon mustard

Handful of flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked and roughly chopped


1. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. In a large bowl, lightly crush the puffed rice using your hands.

2. Put the chicken and mayo in a shallow dish and toss to coat, then season well.

3. Working in batches, tip the chicken into the puffed rice bowl and turn to coat. Set aside.

4. Put the potatoes and the frozen sweetcorn, broccoli and leeks in a large baking dish. Bake in the oven for 10 mins, or until the veg begins to soften.

5. Meanwhile, make a sauce by whisking the stock, crème fraîche and mustard in a jug; season.

6. Remove the veg from the oven, tip the dish to drain any excess water, then pour over the sauce. Top with the chicken and return to the oven for 25 mins, or until the chicken is golden and crisp.

7. To serve, divide the veg and chicken between plates and spoon over the sauce from the bottom of the baking dish. Scatter overthe parsley and dig in!

Cook’s tip: It’s important to use full-fat crème fraîche in this recipe, as lower-fat varieties can split when heated.

Terrific toppings: chargrilled vegetable salad with feta and garlic croutons

Reinvented frozen flatbread is just the thing for perking up a warm salad
Reinvented frozen flatbread is just the thing for perking up a warm salad (Hannah Hughes)

Reinvent frozen flatbread by turning it into delicious garlic croutons – just the thing for perking up a warm salad using frozen mixed Mediterranean veg, salty feta, peppery watercress and sweet balsamic.

Serves: 4

Hands-on time: 10 minutes | Total time: 25 minutes


200g cherry tomatoes

500g M&S Frozen Chargrilled Mediterranean Vegetables

100g feta

1 M&S Frozen Garlic Butter & Cheese Flatbread

70g rocket

80g watercress

2tsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp balsamic vinegar


1. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Arrange the cherry tomatoes and frozen vegetables in a baking tin and roast for 10 mins.

2. Crumble the feta over the veg and return to the oven, along with the flatbread on the shelf below. Cook for 10 mins, or until the feta is soft and the flatbread is golden.

3. Meanwhile, combine the rocket and watercress in a serving bowl.

4. Cut the garlic flatbread into bite-sized pieces – these are your croutons – and scatter over the greens along with the feta and veg. Drizzle over the oil and vinegar and toss gently to combine. Serve the salad while warm with a few good grinds of black pepper, if you like. Best eaten immediately while the croutons are crisp, although any leftovers will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 days.

Switch it up: Instead of feta, try cubed halloumi or a handful of mozzarella pearls.

Creamy and comforting: Thai prawn, butternut and spinach curry

This quick and easy curry makes use of veg straight from the freezer
This quick and easy curry makes use of veg straight from the freezer (Hannah Hughes)

This quick and easy red curry makes use of veg that can be cooked straight from frozen, as well as juicy frozen prawns – a fast way to add some protein that feels a little special too.

Serves: 4

Total time: 30-35 minutes


1 tbsp vegetable oil

35g Thai red curry paste

300ml coconut milk

1 tbsp light soft brown sugar

1 tbsp fish sauce

300g M&S Frozen Butternut Squash

200g Ocado Own Range Frozen Leaf Spinach

200g frozen raw king prawns

720g M&S Frozen Long Grain Rice (4 x 180g sachets)

200g Ocado Own Range Frozen Edamame Beans

Handful of coriander leaves, roughly chopped, to serve


1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the curry paste and fry for 2 mins, or until fragrant. Stir in 100ml of the coconut milk to loosen, then add the sugar and fish sauce and stir to combine.

2. Add the remaining coconut milk and the frozen butternut squash. Simmer, uncovered, over a low heat for 5 mins.

3. Add the frozen spinach and stir to combine. Simmer for 5 mins, or until the squash is tender and the spinach has softened. Stir in the frozen prawns, then cover and simmer for 10 mins, or until pink and cooked through.

4. Meanwhile, cook the rice sachets according to the pack instructions. Place the frozen edamame in a microwave-safe bowl with 1 tbsp water, then cover and microwave on high for 3-5 mins, until cooked. Drain, add to the cooked rice, and fluff the two together with a fork.

5. Serve the prawn curry with the edamame rice and the coriander scattered over the top. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days.

Switch it up: For a vegan version, swap the prawns for extra frozen veg and use vegan curry paste and fish sauce.

Ocado is launching a Fill your Freezer campaign from 22 Feb until 14 March, where there will be a “5 for £10” offer on a range of frozen products, including pizza, vegetables and ice cream, to help everyone make the most out of their freezer this spring and beyond. Find out more at

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