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Summer’s here!  Well, it’s almost here.  Depending on what part of the country you live in, your kids are probably getting out of school sometime this next month – possibly next.  Either way, those of us that suddenly have kids at home might have a little moment of panic about “What do I feed them?”

When it comes to breakfast when school’s in session, “quick and portable” might be the priorities.  But when school’s not in session?  Well, maybe there’s more time for a slightly more involved breakfast.

And when it comes to lunch, the rules are different.  Maybe you are used to pack a lunch every day, but packing a lunch is different than making lunch at home.  Some of our kids might eat hot lunch every day, making lunch a new concern.

And snacks are also something to think about.  When kids are home all day, possibly running around, it seems like they’re always asking for a snack.

So, to help take the panic out of summer eating, here are some of my favorite tips for summer eatin’!

kids-in-summer

Breakfast

  • Breakfast Quesadillas – Bacon, eggs, and cheese all wrapped up in a tortilla?  Ole!
  • Egg Cups – Think of these as mini crustless quiches.  Fill them whatever veggies you like.
  • Sausage Bagel Breakfast Sandwiches – Just 4 ingredients and everyone can assemble their own sandwich as they wake up.
  • Cottage Cheese Pancakes – 4 ingredients with lots of protein.  Keep your family full and satisfied throughout their whole day.
  • Freezer Ready French Toast Sticks – Speaking of fun, this is the most fun!  Kids love them.  I love how easy they are to make and serve.
  • Baked Oatmeal Cups – Put in whatever toppings your family enjoys and everyone will be happy and fulfilled!
  • Oatmeal – My kids do well with oatmeal.  I’ll make a batch and they all like it.  Usually, they want it topped with brown sugar.  Sometimes, we drizzle in a little bit of peanut butter.  You could also use fruit like strawberries, blueberries or raspberries.
  • Overnight Monkey Bread – Keep it easy while also keeping it fun. Imagine your child(ren) waking up to monkey bread without it being a special occasion.
  • Eggs – No need to be too complicated! Hard boil them.  Fry them. Scramble them.  I particularly like eggs with buttered toast!
  • Bagel bar – Set out bagels, english muffins or toast and some toppings such as peanut butter, almond butter, jelly, butter, honey, and cream cheese.

Lunch

Lunch is where I panicked when I became a stay-at-home mom.  But never fear!  It doesn’t have to be too complicate.

  • Leftovers – Yup, we often have leftovers for lunch.  Especially when there isn’t enough leftover to make a complete meal. Example: Some of us can have leftovers from Monday’s dinner while the rest of have it from Tuesday’s dinner.  Great way to use up a little bit of leftover food.
  • Bean & Cheese Burritos – Very easy and you can customize them.  You can add chicken or beef.  Add salsa.  Make a bunch and keep them in the freezer for a super quick lunch.
  • Quesadillas – Keeping with the Mexican theme, quesadillas are a hit.  Just tortillas and cheese melted to yummy goodness.  A hit!
  • Chicken Nuggets – Make your own or buy some – the choice is yours!  My boys liked them dipped in barbecue sauce, but try ranch dressing too.
  • Cobb Salad – This might be more for mom than kids, but some kids would like it.  My boys do well with salads – IF I let them make the salad themselves.  I just get out the raw veggies, start chopping and they start circling around, asking for some.
  • Easy Skillet Nachos – Not gonna lie: we have these almost once a week.  But I usually make them on a cookie sheet.  Since I always have browned hamburger in the freezer, this takes just about 5 minutes to assemble and just slightly longer to bake.
  • Sandwiches – There are lots of choices besides Peanut Butter & Jelly.  There’s grilled cheese, grilled ham & cheese, egg salad, tuna melts,
  • Appetizers – It might take more time to prepare a few different things, but it’d be really fun – especially if they have friends over.  I’m thinking potato skins, cheesy bean dip, or tortilla roll ups!
  • Macaroni & Cheese – You can make it from a box or you can make it from scratch.  The choice is yours, but I haven’t met a kid yet that doesn’t like good ol’ mac & cheese!
  • Mini Pizzas – Make them on a bagel.  Make them on a tortilla.  Make them on English muffins.  Make them on hamburger or hot dog buns.  Everyone can have what they want and clean up is easy!
  • Soup – Yeah, I’m one of those weird people that eat soup year round.  If that’s you, try one of these: Baked Potato Soup, Broccoli Cheese Soup, Cheesy Veggie Chowder, Chicken Noodle Soup, Chicken Tortilla Soup, Ham & Bean Soup, Slow Cooker Chili, Slow Cooker Ham & Bean SoupSlow Cooker Ham & Potato SoupTaco Soup, or Vegetable Soup!

Snacks

Try one of these to wow your kids!

  • Chocolate Covered Banana Slices –  2 ingredients.  Freezer-ready.  Perfect mix of “fruity” and “chocolatey”!
  • Create a Snack Center – Help your kids help themselves.  Create a snack center so that they can be independent of you in the kitchen!  Independence is always a good thing.
  • Ranch Snack Crackers – We have these at most family get togethers. As almost every kid can tell you, everything is better with ranch.
  • Popcorn – I pop a big batch of popcorn at least 2-3 times a week.  We’ll eat it while watching a movie at night or while sitting at swim lessons.
  • Chips & Dip – Try salsa, bean dip, cheese dip or guacamole.
  • Cream Cheese Dip – Wonderful with apples and only has 3 ingredients!
  • Raw veggies – A little prep goes a long way when it comes to serving vegetables.  It takes a little time to prep them, but it pays big dividends!
  • Frozen Fruit Cups – Healthy.  Frozen.  Fun.  A great way to cool off in summer!

Jayme is a wife to 1 and a mother to four little boys. She coupons, price matches and meal plans. While she likes to cook, she’s in the stage of life where simple is usually better – she never knows how many hands she’ll have free at dinner time! You can find her at No Regrets Living.

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