Capture all of the excitement and memories of a new school year with these First…
My Top 5 Tips for Stress-free, Easy, and Healthy Back to School Meal Planning
Back to School can be pretty stressful, but meal planning can help! I’m sharing my Top 5 Tips to help make meal-time as easy as possible with great kid-friendly ideas for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!
This year, back to school might seem a little more overwhelming than usual with things opening back up and after school activities back in full swing. We’ve been quiet at home for so long-it might feel overwhelming.
But don’t worry, I’ve got some easy meal planner tips and recipes to help you out.
My Top 5 Tips for Back To School Meal Planning
Tip #1: Plan out your meals
Remember that old saying…
Failing to plan is Planning to Fail.Alan Lakein
Try to plan out the week in advance.
Keep it simple by using THEMED days.
For example: Meatless Mondays, Taco Tuesday, Waffle Wednesday, etc. (Yes, it’s a thing! A friend of mine makes a fun hashbrown dish in her waffle iron and the kids pile on the toppings. They love it!)
Tip #2: Make casserole dishes ahead of time and freeze them.
Casserole dishes are great because you can usually get a few dinners out of them AND you can easily make them ahead of time. However, most of the time I just throw them together at the last minute.
Check out my family’s favorite Roasted Potato and Great Northern Bean Casserole.
Tip #3: Pre-cut your veggies and salads on Sunday
Prepping the time-consuming tasks like cutting veggies for various meals is much easier to do on Sunday when you’re not tired from work and rushing the kids to different activities. Plus, if the veggies are prepped, you’ll be a million more times more likely to use them.
Tip #4: Make muffins for the kiddos ahead of time
My kids never have time to sit and eat breakfast on a school day, so I started making them healthy muffins ahead of time. I pack them with protein so they’re not just empty calories.
Here are a few of their faves:
Low-fat Pumpkin Protein Muffins (This recipe includes chocolate chips, but you can leave them out)
Chocolate Peppermint Protein Muffins (Save this one for the holidays!)
Super Decadent (AND LOW-FAT) S’mores Muffins (OMG! These are Soo good!)
Or Try Breakfast Cookies–like these amazing Strawberry Almond Butter Breakfast Cookies.
Tip #5: Make Slow Cooker Meals
Slow cooker meals are so great because you can throw the ingredients in, then run your kids to all their activities and then when you get back—just assemble what you’re making and Voila! Easy dinner without worrying about it cooking in the stove.
The most common method is to cook your meat in the slow cooker and then assemble it when you get home. Some popular examples are: tacos, protein bowls, or sliders. (Depending on the cook times-you may need to start it earlier in the day.)
Now, you know I can’t just give you a normal traditional idea.
I have to kick it up a notch and get creative. So I present to you…Slow Cooker Pizza.
Unfortunately, I can’t take credit for this genius recipe, but I’m definitely excited to spread the word about it.
Making pizza is always pretty fast–but the beauty of this method is that it’s easy AND you can let it cook while you’re rushing the kids all over town to their activities. Then when you get home, you just pull it out of the slow cooker, and it’s ready!
Slow Cooker Pizza
This slow cooker pizza is perfect for busy school nights. Simply throw the ingredients into the slow cooker, take your kids to their activities and when you get home, it will be ready to eat!
- 1) 1can (11 oz) refrigerated Pillsbury™ Thin Crust Pizza Crust
- 2) 1/3cup pizza sauce
- 3) 1cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 oz)
- 4) 1 teaspoon oregano
- Optional Toppings:
- • ¼ lb cooked and crumbled sausage
- • ½ cup pepperoni
- • ¼ cup olives
- • ½ artichokes
- • ½ cup spinach
- • ½ cup diced bell peppers
- • 1 tomato, sliced
1. Spray your slow cooker with cooking spray.
2. Unroll pizza dough; fold in half crosswise. Place pizza dough in slow cooker. Press the bottom dough and 1 inch up the sides.
3. Spread pizza sauce evenly
over pizza dough
4. Next, add the cheese.
5. Finally, sprinkle the
oregano and any toppings you’d like to use.
6. Cover the slow cooker. Cook on Low heat setting 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until crust edges are deep golden brown and cheese is melted.
7. Remove from slow cooker to
cutting board. Cut and serve.
Have you tried any of these recipes or tips?
I’d love to hear how it went! Tag me on Instagram @OurSuttonPlace.
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HI! I’m a Shana, self-proclaimed Media Mixologist, wife, and mom to two little girls. I love to mix up cocktails of crafts, recipes, wellness, family and business with just the right amount of sparkle to help you shine everyday. So, grab a glass, and let’s celebrate the cocktail of life!
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