Tag: kids & family

7 Lunchbox Accessories to Pack the Best Lunches Ever

by in Family, September 15th, 2014

7 Lunchbox Accessories to Pack the Best Lunches EverPacking a school lunch has a bad reputation, but it doesn’t have to be so hard — and the results can be very sweet. Here are a few of my favorite gadgets that easily make all the difference between a so-so lunch that comes home half-eaten and a special little treat kids can’t resist.

1. Bento Boxes: It’s simple to pack a balanced lunch when you have several compartments to fill with something different. Planet Box is the most-expensive line, but with a stainless-steel box that comes in a cushy (and customizable) case, it’s hard to beat. Our favorite plastic (and more affordable) version is EasyLunchboxes, which are BPA-free and also come with cooler bags in every shade of the rainbow.

2. Our Favorite Water Bottles: Oh, the leaky water bottles. If I could have a refund for all the sippy cups, water bottles and novelty glasses we’ve bought for our brood, college would be paid for already. Along the way I’ve figured it out. This is the only kind of water bottle we’ll buy going forward: The Bubba bottle is made of stainless steel, isn’t overpriced, is dishwasher-safe and hasn’t leaked a drop yet.

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7 Peanut Butter for Dinner Recipes

by in Recipes, September 10th, 2014

Peanut Butter for DinnerIt’s time to pack the kids up for school again, and that means making mounds of school lunches. But PB&J sandwiches can take you only so far. For a new twist on a classic ingredient that kids and adults love, look no further than the Peanut Butter series on FN Dish. For the next two weeks, we’ll be giving you inventive recipes that let you incorporate peanut butter into all your meals — from breakfast to dessert — for the entire family.

Here are some comforting dinner ideas for those cold fall nights. And don’t forget to look back at our breakfast and lunch recipes here.

1. Peanut butter serves as the perfect marinade in this Pork Chops with Pineapple Relish recipe (pictured above).

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Poll: What’s for Breakfast on School Days?

by in Recipes, September 6th, 2014

Mixed Berry and Yogurt ParfaitNow that school is back in session, the late-morning breakfasts of summer are surely a thing of a past, and they’ve likely been replaced with a frenzied half hour of packing lunches, gathering supplies to toss into backpacks and tying shoes at the door. But while there may be hardly any time to sit down to extravagant breakfasts on hectic weekday mornings, it’s nevertheless important for little ones to leave the house with full tummies so they can begin to make the grade. When time is tight at your house on school days, what dishes do you reach for to feed your kids? Are you a fan of assemble-and-eat picks like a Mixed Berry and Yogurt Parfait (pictured above), or do you rely on last night’s prep work to save the day, as it does with Alton’s Overnight Oatmeal? When it comes to eggs, do you opt for hard-boiled beauties, or do prefer them scrambled?

Cast your vote below to tell FN Dish what’s for breakfast at your house on school days.

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Load Up the Kids’ Lunchboxes for Back-to-School

by in Family, September 4th, 2014

Fruit Leather Roll-UpsEspecially if you have picky eaters on board, it can be hard to pin down kid-friendly recipes that translate from the kitchen to the lunchbox. Luckily, Food Network’s guide to Kid-Approved Lunches and Locker-Friendly Foods makes cafeteria glee an everyday affair. These recipes for stackable sandwiches, DIY meals and wholesome desserts are champs in a lunchbox, and they are just the fuel your kids need to get back in the swing of things.

With a recipe like Ellie Krieger’s Rainbows and Butterflies Pasta Salad for Food Network Magazine on hand, it’s a cinch for your kids to “eat the rainbow.” In between bites of whole-wheat bow tie pasta comes corn, edamame, red bell pepper and carrots.

Tyler Florence’s lunchtime comes with a dose of ingenuity: He packs a sandwich, among other things, inside an empty tennis ball canister. Tyler Florence’s Fresh Mozzarella BLT with Pesto on a baguette for FN Magazine easily one-ups the lunch pail.

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8 Creative School Lunch Ideas, No Edible Markers Needed

by in Family, September 4th, 2014

8 Creative School Lunch Ideas, No Edible Markers NeededI don’t know about you, but I think making a brilliant school lunch doesn’t have to be so hard. (Just open any parenting magazine and you’ll find glossy photos showcasing hula dancer sandwiches with cucumber skirts, rice pandas complete with sly little smiles and more.) These simple-but-special ideas will punch up your crew’s lunchboxes with nary a hand-carved cow sandwich in sight.

1. Rainbows and Butterflies Pasta Salad by Food Network Magazine: Did you know bow tie pasta is called farfalle in Italian and means “butterfly”? Ellie Krieger opts for this colorful cold pasta dish (pictured above) full of fresh carrots, corn, edamame, red peppers and, of course, a sprinkle of shredded Parmesan cheese.

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Back-to-School Meal Planning

by in Family, September 3rd, 2014

Back to School Meal PlanningLast week signaled back to school for families in some parts of the country, and it starts this week here in New York. Watching my friends post first-day-of-school photos reminds me of the 180-degree turn it’ll mean for our schedules. No more sleeping in and eating breakfast at noon. Instead of sitting down to dinner at 8pm, that’s when I’ll be tucking the kids into bed. One thing back to school doesn’t have to mean, though, is back to takeout. With some smart planning, we’ll be enjoying the same home cooking, just a little earlier than our lazy days of summer.

Prep School: Set yourself up for success on busy weeknights by having vegetables ready to use. You can chop or slice onions and leave them in sealed containers one to two days advance. When I have a recipe that calls for only half an onion, I immediately chop the other half and store it in the freezer in a zip-top bag. Then I can just toss it into the skillet when I’m ready to use it (no need to thaw it first). The same goes for garlic. Chop a whole head and spoon it into mini ice cube trays. Just pop out what you need when you’re ready to get cooking (no need to thaw it first).

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7 Peanut Butter for Lunch Recipes

by in Recipes, September 2nd, 2014

Peanut Butter for Lunch
It’s time to pack the kids up for school again, and that means making mounds of school lunches. But PB&J sandwiches can take you only so far. For a new twist on a classic ingredient that kids and adults love, look no further than the Peanut Butter series on FN Dish. For the next three weeks, we’ll be giving you inventive recipes that let you incorporate peanut butter into all your meals — from breakfast to dessert — for the entire family.

Here are ways you can sneak a little peanut butter into your midday meal: lunch. And don’t forget to check out last week’s breakfast post here.

1. Instead of a mayonnaise-based chicken salad, try it with a touch of peanut butter with Bobby Flay‘s Chinese Chicken Salad with Red Chile Peanut Butter recipe (pictured above).

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6 Peanut Butter for Breakfast Recipes

by in Recipes, August 28th, 2014

Peanut ButterIt’s almost time to pack the kids up for school again, and that means making mounds of school lunches. But PB&J sandwiches can take you only so far. For a new twist on a classic ingredient that kids and adults love, look no further than the Peanut Butter series on FN Dish. For the next four weeks, we’ll be giving you inventive recipes that let you incorporate peanut butter into all your meals — from breakfast to dessert — for the entire family. We’re starting with the most-important meal of the day: breakfast.

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5 All-New Recipes Kids Can (and Will Want to!) Make

by in Family, Recipes, August 27th, 2014

5 All-New Recipes Kids Can (and Will Want to!) MakeAre your kids inspired by the tiny chefs on Rachael vs. Guy: Kids Cook-Off and the impressive contenders from Chopped Teen Tournament? Then it’s time to let them get their hands dirty in the kitchen. Food Network Kitchen came up with these easy, satisfying and safe dishes to get them started. Everyone (including parents!) will enjoy eating the final products, like these fun Taco Cheeseburgers.

Little kids can help tear the cheese and measure the salsa, while big kids can help shape and season the beef patties and shred the lettuce. Everyone can assemble his or her own taco.

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6 Breakfast Picnic Ideas

by in Family, August 25th, 2014

6 Breakfast Picnic IdeasWhat better way to savor the last days of sunshine than packing up a breakfast picnic? There are two ways to do it: Go old school with a blanket in the yard, or head to the patio. Either way, just pack a thermos of coffee, another full of milk (doing double duty as a beverage for the kids, plus creamer for the java), then bring your breakfast out on a tray — it’s easier to handle than a basket. Now take your pick: We’ve got muffins, eggs and more, each of them to go.

1. Baked Scrambled Eggs (pictured above): You don’t need a bug-shaped pan to pull this off, but it’s sure fun. Beaten eggs plus milk and the toppings of your choice (cheese, ham, tomatoes and more) go into the oven for a sturdy egg dish that’s just as good at room (or outdoor) temperature as it is hot.

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