Back to School Make Ahead Meals

School starts again on Monday, and that means I need to start using my Saturday mornings to make meals for the week again. These meals save me so much time during the week. I get home from work at 4:30 and have dinner on the table at 5, so we can go to all the kids’ activities. Here are this week’s back to school make ahead meals.

These back to school make ahead meals will save you time and stress during the busy start to the new school year.

Back to School Make Ahead Meals

I’m not exactly sure how it’s time to go back to school again. It feels like summer just started. It went by so quickly! I enjoyed spending extra time with Tony and the kids and exploring Hershey.

I spent last week getting my classroom ready. That way, I was able to relax this weekend. I went grocery shopping, made my back to school make ahead meals, and enjoyed my last few days of break.

Here are the meals we’ll be enjoying this week.

Monday – French Onion Chicken and Rice Bake

French Onion Chicken and Rice Bake, a back to school make ahead meal

Monday night, J has soccer practice. That means we have to be out the door again by 5:30 to make it to the soccer field by 6. I decided to make the French Onion Chicken and Rice Bake from Steph at Plain Chicken.

You may know that onions are the one food I refuse to eat. However, I don’t mind the flavor of onion. It’s the crunchy texture and raw taste I hate in my foods. The french onion dip and fried onions in this recipe don’t bother me.

This recipe was really easy to put together. I just cooked the rice and stirred in the other ingredients. Now I just need to bake it for 20 minutes when I get home Monday night, and we’ll have about 30 minutes to eat before soccer practice.

Tuesday – Taco Ring

Taco Ring, a back to school make ahead meal

Tacos are a favorite at my house. We had them about once a week all summer long. J discovered that he loves quesadillas, so we put his taco toppings in those. When I saw the recipe for the Taco Ring from Christin at Spicy Southern Kitchen, I knew he would love it. It’s a cross between a taco and a quesadilla.

I also love the presentation of this taco ring. I can put the toppings in the middle of it after it’s cooked. This would be a really fun party food! My kids love lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream and salsa on their tacos. I took a few minutes to wash and cut the lettuce and tomatoes, so I won’t need to do that Tuesday night.

Wednesday – Creamy Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Gnocchi

Creamy Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Gnocchi, a back to school make ahead meal

I was watching the Food Network last week, and a chef make his own gnocchi. Everyone in the restaurant raved about how wonderful it was. I realized that I’ve never tried gnocchi, so I looked for a recipe that used it.

Making gnocchi looked like a pretty intense process, so I took the easy way out and bought premade gnocchi. I started looking for it in the freezer section of the grocery store with the ravioli and tortellini. There was no gnocchi. I almost gave up, but I decided to look in the pasta aisle. All the way at the end, I found a little package of gnocchi.

Now that I had my star ingredient, I made the recipe I found. It’s the Creamy Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Gnocchi from Jo at Jo Cooks. I love sun dried tomatoes, and this recipe looked delicious! It’s also another dish that I can heat really quickly, since Wednesday is another soccer night.

By the way, I sampled a few gnocchi as I was assembling this dish, and it was very yummy. I can’t wait for the rest of my family to try them!

Thursday – Baked Mahi Mahi with Tomatoes and Olives

Mahi Mahi with Tomatoes and Olives, a back to school make ahead mealMahi mahi was on sale at the fish counter this week. This isn’t a fish I usually buy, but I thought it would be nice to try something different. I searched on Pinterest for a recipe and found the Baked Mahi Mahi with Tomatoes and Olives from Anna at Garnish with Lemon.

My whole family loves Mediterranean flavors, so I’m hoping this will be a hit with the tomatoes and olives. The kids eat most types of fish. Hopefully we can add mahi mahi to that list.

Friday – Barbecue Chicken Pizza

barbecue chicken pizza, a back to school make ahead meal

You may recall that Friday night is pizza night at my house. This week, I thought we’d try a new type of pizza. Pillsbury products were buy two, get one free at the grocery store. I was already buying 2 cans of crescent rolls for the taco ring, so I picked up a can of pizza dough for the Barbecue Chicken Pizza from Jamie at Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom.

Barbecue chicken and pizza sound like a perfect combination. Can’t wait to try this new creation Friday night.

Dessert – M&M’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

I’m not going to make it through the first week of school without a yummy dessert. The M&M’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars from Averie at Averie Cooks are just what I need. I can’t wait to pack these in my lunchbox for dessert. I guess I can put a little one in J’s lunchbox, too. He’s going to have to make it through the first week of 2nd grade.

Happy Back to School!

If you’re going back to school or you have kids going back to school, I hope you have a fabulous first week! I know I will, since I don’t have to worry about what I’m feeding my family when I get home. My back to school make ahead meals help reduce the stress of the new school year and allow me to spend quality time with the kids while dinner is cooking.

What are you having for dinner this week? Let me know in the comments below.



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2 thoughts on “Back to School Make Ahead Meals

  1. Tara, you always inspire me with the amount of things you accomplish. Amazing. All of these look fabulous, I’m sure that the kids will love them and it’s so cool that you’re able to get all this done and serve homemade meals. First I want to try the french onion with chicken and rice, it’s right up my alley!

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