Back-to-School Easy Meals for Busy Families

Backtoschool season is here and, for many of us, that also means back to more scheduled, structured family calendars.

When it comes to household organization, one of the best ways to stay on top of the craziness is to make a plan. Meal planning before Monday will save your money and your sanity, so you don’t have to scramble every night to figure out what’s for dinner. Good news here – food made fast doesn’t have to be unhealthy or tasteless. We dug through some of our favorite family recipes, hand-picked for busy parents who are looking for quick, delicious meals they can prepare for their busy brood. 

#1. Maple Roasted Sweet Potato and Sausage Hash

Breakfast for dinner is at the top of our list when it comes to meals that meet the mark bringing quick, healthy food to our families. We love the sweet and salty combo of Pure Vanilla Extract together with smoked paprika, crispy grilled sausages and fried eggs. This is a great mid-week meal if you want to use up any leftover veggies you have in the fridge. Roast the potatoes while you’re prepping the rest of the dish and top it all off with eggs made-to-order!  


#2. 5-Ingredient Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken Skewers 

Fall is fast approaching but there’s still plenty of sunshine left to fire up that grill a few more times and dine al fresco. These chicken skewers come together quickly (you could even make the marinade the night before) – and the double dose of citrus with the Pure Lemon Extract and Pure Orange Extract keeps the sweet and spicy notes in check. Add our Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread and fresh, sliced watermelon to this meal to round it out. 


#3. Hearty White Bean Chili 

Chili is the best mid-week meal because it doesn’t take much to pull together a delicious stew. If you don’t have all of the ingredients we’ve listed, you can sub in almost anything you have at home. Chop up yesterday’s chicken fajitas, sauté those veggies that you bought at the farmer’s market last week, and let it all simmer in the slow cooker while you’re out and about. Plus, if you want to try going meatless for a few meals each week, you can swap the chicken and chicken stock with extra beans and vegetable stock for a vegetarian version of this meal. (Shhhh, don’t tell anyone, but we snuck some Pure Chocolate Extract in our chili for a sweet surprise!).  


#4. Savory Pork Tenderloin   

Pork tenderloin is a great “make one-serve two” kind of meal. We’ve found the perfect balance of savory and sweet in our 5-minute marinade with Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract. Serve up the tenderloin with our Lemony Grilled Potato Salad one night and the next day, thinly slice up the leftover meat for pork tacos or a wholesome salad. If you don’t have time to grill, you can bake the tenderloin at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 minutes per pound, or until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep the meat tender by basting it occasionally while it cooks.  


Share your favorite easy family meals using the hashtag #NielsenMasseyInspires. We love hearing your ideas! 


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