Back to School Meal Prep IdeasBy: Bob's Red Mill | September 21 2019
When you’re looking to keep mealtime interesting, budget-friendly and nutritious, meal prepping is the way to go!
Meal prepping for school and work can save you time, money and works to keep your belly filled with wholesome ingredients.
If you’re looking for healthy meal prep ideas for the whole family, here are some of our favorite recipes. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch or dinner options you’re searching for, we have you covered!
One of the most important parts of back to school meal prep is breakfast. Mornings are early, busy and filled with getting kids ready for the day ahead, so having breakfast prepped and ready to go is a game changer. Luckily, there are tons of healthy meal prep ideas for breakfast. From oats to muffins, here are a few of our favorites.
Easy Overnight Steel Cut Oats with Almond Milk and Honey
If you find yourself reaching for something convenient in the morning, like a box of sugar-filled cereal, then overnight oats are for you! Just soak your oats the night before, throw them in the fridge and when you wake up in the morning, you’ll have a nutritious and delicious breakfast ready to go. This recipe for Easy Overnight Steel Cut Oats with Almond Milk and Honey from Chef Billy Parisi mixes Bob’s Red Mill Organic Steel Cut Oats with unsweetened almond milk for a simple yet wonderfully tasty breakfast. Our award-winning oats are milled from high-protein organic oats, so you can rest assured that you’re filling your kids’ bodies with something wholesome before school starts. Customize your oats with chia seeds, berries, shredded coconut, cinnamon, honey, maple syrup or anything else your heart desires.
Zucchini Orange Muffins
What’s not to love about a big batch of muffins in the morning? Whether we’re reaching for a muffin topped with almond butter for breakfast or having one in the late afternoon with a cup of tea, we love our muffins—especially when they’re packed with good ingredients. These Zucchini Orange Muffins are made with a unique base of Organic Quinoa Flour, which is stone ground from whole grain quinoa and used in baked goods for a tender, moist crumb. Combined with bright flavors of orange, warm spices like cinnamon and clove and a hefty amount of shredded zucchini, these muffins are a must-have when meal prepping for school. Make a big batch on Sunday afternoon and enjoy them throughout the week.
Healthy Breakfast Cookies with Oats and Peanut Butter
Most kids (and adults) will be delighted to hear that cookies are on the breakfast menu! As a back to school meal prep idea, they’re superb, as they’re easy to grab when you’re running out the door! Plus, it doesn’t take too much convincing to get your little ones to indulge in cookies as a main course for breakfast. These Healthy Breakfast Cookies with Oats and Peanut Butter are gluten free, vegan and packed with wholesome ingredients like oats, chia, flax and cooked sweet potato. Make these delicious morsels when you have some extra time during the weekend and store them in a container for up to five days to eat throughout the week.
Having healthy meal prep ideas on hand for lunchtime is just as important as breakfast! When you’re prepping for yourself and your little ones, there’s a fine balance between kid-friendly and not-so-friendly. Whether you’re venturing to work or kindergarten, here are some lunch meal prep ideas for the whole family to enjoy.
Vegetable Bounty Quinoa Salad with Asian Vinaigrette
When the days are still long and warm, making a hearty salad for dinner and having leftovers the following day is one of the best ways to meal prep. This Vegetable Bounty Quinoa Salad with Asian Vinaigrette is packed with fresh vegetables and creamy kidney beans. Combined with a sweet and citrusy dressing, this recipe is sure to please the whole family. It comes to Bob’s Red Mill courtesy of Naomi Pomeroy from Beast in Portland, Oregon and can easily be made vegan. Enjoy it for meatless Mondays or pair it with the protein of your choice, like grilled chicken or fish. Feel free to get creative with your ingredients and include your family’s favorite veggies as you please!
Tabbouleh (Bulgur, Parsley and Mint Salad)
When you’re meal prepping for school, tabbouleh is a simple, refreshing and easy-to-pack lunch. It’s an affordable option sure to save you time even on the busiest of days! The star of the lunch show in this recipe for Tabbouleh is Bulgur, a quick-cooking whole grain. Our bulgur is made from cracked wheat berries and can be added to a variety of dishes, from salads to muffins. Once combined with the flavors of parsley, mint and lemon juice, the crunch of cucumbers and the sweetness of ripe tomatoes, this dish instantly becomes a family favorite. Make a big salad to serve alongside grilled lemon chicken for dinner and in the morning, you’ll be all set with delicious leftovers.
Mediterranean Sorghum Grain Bowl
Grain bowls are a great option when it comes to healthy meal prep ideas for the week. They can be easily customized and quickly devoured for a boost of midday energy! This Mediterranean Sorghum Grain Bowl starts with a base of our Sorghum Grain and is then topped with fresh veggies, kalamata olives and garbanzo beans. The sorghum is gluten free and has a hearty texture and mild, nutty flavor. You’ll love it in everything from pilafs to salads. Feel free to get creative with your grain bowls and use up whatever leftover produce is in the fridge!
At the end of a long school day, there’s something invigorating about having your dinner fully prepped! A big part of back to school meal prep is knowing how you’re going to fuel your family’s bodies after a day on the go. Here are a few of our favorite ways to do so.
Slow Cooker White Chicken and Quinoa Chili
Two of the best healthy meal prep ideas are to use the slow cooker and to make chili, and this recipe for Slow Cooker White Chicken and Quinoa Chili incorporates them both! Kelly from Eat Yourself Skinny blends hearty and healthy with this divine recipe, perfect for a cool autumn or winter evening. We love that it takes just 20 minutes to prep and all you have to do is add the ingredients and place the slow cooker on high for 3–4 hours (or low for 6–8 hours). Prep this in the morning and in the evening, enjoy a relaxing meal with the family.
Cheesy Polenta Casserole with Gorgonzola
If you’re feeding a hungry crowd, look no further than this Cheesy Polenta Casserole with Gorgonzola. Our Corn Grits (also known as polenta) cook up quickly and make a rich and creamy porridge for breakfast, lunch or dinner. In this recipe, they’re mixed with sautéed onions, whisked eggs, Parmesan, gorgonzola and green onions and then poured into a greased baking dish. Prep and bake in the morning, then reheat in the evening! Pair this dish with a quick side of sautéed collard greens.
Sally's Turkey Pot Pie
Sally’s Turkey Pot Pie is the ultimate comfort food for back to school meal prep. You can prep these pies when you have some extra time on the weekend then heat them in the oven when you’re ready to serve. This particular pie recipe calls for our Gluten Free Pie Crust, which gives the crust a light and flaky texture. A mix of potatoes, carrots and green beans offer a hearty and well-rounded meal. This is the perfect recipe to make after Thanksgiving when you have endless amounts of leftover turkey!
Fine Herbs Quiche
Quiche covers all the bases when it comes to healthy meal prep ideas for the week. They can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a snack and are packed with protein and flavor. This Fine Herbs Quiche is simple, rich and filled with flavor. Pair it with a soup or salad for a full meal and a baguette, if you want to feel extra French! Quiche can be eaten warm or cold, which makes it the perfect leftover food to pack in a lunchbox for school or work.
Have any favorite ideas for back to school meal prep? Whether it’s a breakfast option, a delicious lunch meal or a fully prepped dinner, we’d love to hear how you keep your family happy and healthy!
Feel free to share all your best meal prep ideas with us in the comments below.
From all of us at Bob’s Red Mill, wishing you sunny days ahead as you embark on a new school year. Thank you for reading, and happy eating!