Whether you’re fixing breakfast and packing lunches or running errands and helping with homework, the back-to-school season can make your days super busy. If you’re looking for a way to save time in your hectic schedule, you can start in the kitchen by making the most of your leftovers. Here are 10 delicious back-to-school dinners that transform into tomorrow’s tasty school lunch.
Spicy black bean vegetarian chili
Chili is a food that is even more flavorful on the second day. Make this recipe for a hearty dinner and then pack a portion for a school lunch (remember to leave out the jalapeño if the kids don’t like spice). Add a whole grain tortilla wrap to the lunchbox, and you’ve transformed this leftover meal into a chili burrito. (Also a great option for meatless Monday dishes!)
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Rotisserie chicken tacos
This meal makes a quick and tasty dinner, and the leftovers also make a yummy lunch. Don’t forget to throw in a handful of tortilla chips and a side of salsa dip.
Spinach chicken Alfredo French bread pizza
Kids (adults too!) love eating pizza for breakfast, lunch and dinner, so they won’t turn their noses up at this dish for dinner or a school lunch. Even if your kids aren’t veggie lovers, they will enjoy this pizza because the veggies are hidden under the tastiness of the cheese. Serve with a side of fresh fruit for lunch.
Rotisserie pesto chicken salad sandwiches
Sandwiches are the way to go if you want a quick and easy meal. This sandwich recipe uses shredded rotisserie chicken, which automatically cuts your cooking time in half. The chicken and toppings make this a perfect meal for a light dinner, and it also makes a great, hearty lunch.
Classic mac and cheese
Classic mac and cheese in the slow cooker is a kid-friendly (and loved) recipe for dinner. Adding extra veggies to this dish will make it more nutritious. Kids will enjoy this favorite the following day for lunch.
Pretzel-crusted chicken strips
Forget drive-thru! Whip up your own fast food in the comfort of your home by making these pretzel-crusted chicken strips. Serve them with a salad for dinner and then pack them with cut up veggies and a dipping sauce for school lunch the next day.
Sloppy Joe grilled cheese sandwiches
Sloppy Joe sandwiches are the perfect meal option for busy weeknights. Spice up the leftovers by turning them into sloppy Joe grilled cheese sandwiches. The revamped tasty sandwich will be a school lunch treat.
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Chicken Caesar salad pizza
Turn your salad into a pizza for a yummy and creative meal. The diced chicken, Parmesan cheese and Caesar dressing on top of pizza crust make this dish a flavorful one. Cut up the pizza leftovers into bite-sized pieces and pack them with a dipping sauce and a side of veggies for a tasty school lunch.
This healthy dish is perfect for school nights — your family will be ready to eat in less than 30 minutes. Pasta is delicious when served hot or cold. Place the leftovers over a bed of spinach and sprinkle a little cheese on top for a tasty school lunch.
Chicken salad sandwiches
Savor the flavor and sweetness in these simple sandwiches. This recipe gives you three different ways to prepare your chicken salad. Eat the chicken salad on croissants for dinner and then pack the chicken salad leftovers with crackers for lunch.