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Episode 104: Make-Ahead Lunches for Back-to-School

Filed Under:

Podcast, school lunch, School Lunch

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Listen on iTunes | Stitcher | GooglePlay | Spotify | Overcast | Pocketcast | Android


This week’s episode is brought to you by Cabot Creamery, KiwiCo and Bada Bean Bada Boom

This year, more than ever, having a lunch strategy that includes make-ahead lunches will save us. For Meghan, it’s about making sure that her partner has quick lunch solutions for the kids who will be at home in remote school while she’s at the office. For Stacie, it’s about prepping lunches that her older boys can grab, heat and eat on their own. And for both of them, it’s about making sure that they also have a nourishing lunch to keep them going — because it’s going to be a long school year.


This post contains affiliate links, we may make a small percentage on products we recommend.


Here's How To Make Makahead Lunches for Virtual Schooling and More .jpg

The Gift of Make-Ahead Lunches

Busy home cooks tend to fall into two camps: those who make ahead and those who don’t. But we think that everyone can set themselves up for quick, easy cooking with the right make-ahead strategies. The strategies you choose will depend on your desire and ability to plan ahead and also your schedule (duh). But no matter how these factors combine, we have ways that you make or prep lunch so that you’re not spending all day in the kitchen.

Here are the links mentioned in our conversation:



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Get Social With Us

Be sure to join our private Listener’s Group on Facebook (our favorite cocktail is WHISKEY — you’ll understand when you try to join). This week, we’re going to mind hive lunch prep strategies. Because with so many kids either in remote or hybrid school, so many of us parents are thinking about how to make lunches work.

And of course, don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter to make sure you don’t miss a thing.

You can also find us at @didntijustfeed you on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. And if you happen to love us as much as we love you (because y’all are very real), you can find Meghan as @meghan_splawn and Stacie as @staciebillis on Instagram.


Oh, hi: Leave us a Voicemail

Did you know that you can call us? From your device? Like, RIGHT NOW!

It’s true. Click here, hit start recording, and tell us what’s on your mind. We think you can imagine what our inbox looks like (right?): voicemail is the way to go to share your thoughts, ideas, and even just your happy hellos.



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Other DIJFY Episodes You’ll Love

If you loved this episode, we think you’ll also love these past episode. Binge listen, activate!

 

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Some Make Ahead Lunch Love from Our Friends at Cabot.jpg

Cabot Creamery

Whether you’re packing lunch to go, prepping lunch for an easy remote or home school break, or both, Cabot has convenient and totally delicious options, from shredded, to blocks, to pre-cut. Cabot makes it easy to get award-winning taste however you need it at conventional market prices.

Our favorites include:

PEPPERJACK! This comes in a block and also in cracker cuts, which both of our families are obsessed with. It’s perfect for snack time, lunchboxes, and the best dinner quesadillas ever.

TUSCAN CHEDDAR! The easiest and most affordable “fancy” cheese ever, this is perfect for a socially distanced hang with friends or snack board dinner.

MAC AND CHEESE SHREDDED CHEESE! A combo of Cabot’s Alpine and Sharp Cheddar, this is the perfect shortcut to a gourmet-tasting mac and cheese night.

SERIOUSLY SHARP CHEDDAR! You can never go wrong with this widely available classic. Cabot’s Seriously Sharp Cheddar packs an award-winning flavor punch without requiring you to shell out gourmet cheese prices. It’s seriously delicious and seriously all-purpose too.

KiwiCo

This school year, we’re looking for innovate ways to keep the kids happy and engaged at home — especially with sports and after school activities up in the air or cancelled! Which is why we’re thrilled to keep at it with our KiwiCo crates.

KiwiCo creates super cool, hands-on art and science projects that kids from preschool to teens can do from home on their own. Each KiwiCo box is delivered monthly and comes with ALL the supplies needed for that month’s project.

If you’re also looking for ways to make STEAM activities fun for home (and, shhhh, get some time for yourself while the kids keep busy doing something educational), go to kiwico.com/didntijustfeedyou.

You’ll get your first month free on select crates!


BadaBeanBadaBoom + Didnt I just Feed You - a high protein snack we love .jpg

Bada Bean Bada Boom

Bada Bean Bada Boom are DELICIOUS high-protein snacks made of roasted broad beans, though you’d never know it. The 13 flavors are far from tasting like nutritious beans and, instead, serve up 7 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber in tasty flavors like Zesty Ranch, Everything Bagel, Nacho Cheese, Sweet Cinnamon and more.

We promise our kids are as obsessed as we are! If you’re curious to know whether you and yours will love these super crunchy snacks as much as we do, give them a try and get $10 off any order $50 or more at BadaBeanSnacks.com/didntijustfeedyou.



Cabot Tomato and Cheddar Cheese Tart from Didnt I Just Feed You.jpg

Southern Inspired Tomato and Cheddar Cheese Tart

This is the kind of tart that you can eat warm or room temperature, which makes it ideal for make ahead lunches. Don’t skip draining the tomatoes on paper towels or you’ll have a soggy bottomed tart! We love the combination of Cabot’s sharp cheddar and Colby cheese — but any partnering of a sharp and slightly mild cheese is delicious!

Serves 4 to 6

2 to 3 ripe tomatoes
1 sheet frozen puff pastry
3 tablespoons Duke’s mayonnaise
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 ounces shredded Cabot Sharp cheddar cheese, about 1/2 cup
2 ounces shredded Cabot Colby cheese, about 1/2 cup
2 tablespoons finely chopped basil
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to taste

Directions

Drain the tomatoes: Slice the tomatoes into 1/8 inch slices. Lay out the tomato slices on a double of paper towels. Cover with more paper towels and “drain” for approximately 30 minutes — this helps keep the puff pastry crust crisp in baking. Remove the sheet of puff pastry from the freezer and thaw at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Make the tart: Preheat oven to 400°F. Unfold the puff pastry onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Use a sharp knife to score a 1-inch thick border on the edge of the puff pastry. Prick the dough all over with a fork inside the border (this prevents the center from puffing up too much during baking).

Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise over the entire puff pastry. Arrange the tomato slices over the mayo. Season generously with kosher salt and pepper. Sprinkle evenly with shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheeses.

Bake for 30 minutes, until the pastry is golden-brown and the cheese is melted. Remove the pastry from the baking sheet and let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Grate a sprinkling amount of Parmesan cheese on top and garnish with freshly chopped basil. Cut into 9 squares and serve immediately.

 

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