Spending an entire day in the kitchen to make freezer meals can definitely seem like a daunting task, especially if you're hesitant to start your own once a month cooking. There are a some tricks of the trade that you can do to help make your OAMC (once a month cooking) day a lot less overwhelming.
One of those tricks is to gather all your non-perishable ingredients the night before and set them out on the counter or your working space. For me, this has proven to be a huge time-saver.
I gather all my recipes together for my planned menu, and I flip through the ingredients list, taking out as many non-perishables as I can and setting them on the counter where I'll be doing most of the work like cutting up veggies or mixing ingredients. I pull out things like pasta, seasoning packets, tomato sauce, mushrooms, spaghetti sauce, and so forth. Nearly everything that is in the recipe which doesn't need to stay refrigerated gets set out on the counter.
I find that I use similar ingredients across several recipes, like mushrooms, taco seasoning, pasta, etc. So to pull out one can of mushrooms several times throughout my O.A.M.C. day doesn't make a whole lot of sense. What does make sense is having my ingredients right at my fingertips as I'm preparing my meals.
This time-saving method helps me be more efficient, which in turns increases my productivity, which in turn means less time in the kitchen!