Back To School Buffet

It’s Back To School time! And with the great return of homework assignments and after school activities comes a hustle and bustle that makes it all to easy to get off-track with having healthy, family-centered meals.

That’s why I’ve put together this quick collection of Back-To-School breakfasts, snacks and dinners that’ll put a smile on even the pickiest eater’s face. Enjoy!


Morning Glory Muffins

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

3/4 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut

1/4 cup ground flax seed

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 large Granny Smith apple, shredded

3/4 pound carrots, shredded

1 cup crushed pineapple, drained

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup applesauce

1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 12 large muffin cups.
  2. Mix brown sugar, all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, cranberries, coconut, flax seed, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt together in a bowl. Add grated apple and carrots; stir to combine. Add pineapple, vegetable oil, applesauce, pecans, eggs, and vanilla extract; stir until just combined. Pour batter into prepared muffin cups.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean, about 35 minutes.


Apple Ladybug Treats

  1. Slice apples in half from top to bottom and scoop out the cores using a knife or melon baller. If you have an apple corer, core them first, then slice. Place each apple half flat side down on a small plate.
  2. Dab peanut butter on to the back of the ‘lady bug’, then stick raisins onto the dabs for spots. Use this method to make eyes too. Stick one end of each pretzel stick into a raisin, then press the other end into the apples to make antennae.

Granola Bars

2 cups rolled oats

1/2 cup shredded coconut

1/2 cup honey

2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon salt

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease a 9-inch square baking dish.
  2. Spread the oats and coconut evenly across a baking sheet.
  3. Toast oats and coconut in preheated oven until browned, about 10 minutes; transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  4. Mix honey, peanut butter, vanilla extract, and salt in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook and stir until smooth. Pour the honey mixture over the oats and coconut; stir to coat. Spread the mixture evenly into the prepared baking dish.
  5. Bake in preheated oven until beginning to dry, about 15 minutes for crunchy granola bars, less if you like them chewy. Cool completely before cutting.


Oven-Baked Chicken Nuggets

3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

1 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 tablespoon dried basil

1/2 cup butter, melted

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  2. Cut chicken breasts into 1 1/2-inch sized pieces. In a medium bowl, mix together the bread crumbs, cheese, salt, thyme and basil. Mix well. Put melted butter in a bowl or dish for dipping.
  3. Dip chicken pieces into the melted butter first, then coat with the breadcrumb mixture. Place the well-coated chicken pieces on a lightly greased cookie sheet in a single layer, and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.

Honey-Mustard Grilled Chicken

1/3 cup Dijon mustard

1/4 cup honey

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1 teaspoon steak sauce

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

  1. Preheat the grill for medium heat.
  2. In a shallow bowl, mix the mustard, honey, mayonnaise, and steak sauce. Set aside a small amount of the honey mustard sauce for basting, and dip the chicken into the remaining sauce to coat.
  3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill chicken over indirect heat for 18 to 20 minutes, turning occasionally, or until juices run clear. Baste occasionally with the reserved sauce during the last 10 minutes. Watch carefully to prevent burning!

Recipes courtesy of