Culinary instructor Marcia Smart shares easy back-to-school recipes

Say goodbye to the same old lonely sandwich! There are simple ways to upgrade your kids’ lunch boxes in the new school year! Culinary instructor and owner of Smart In The Kitchen School, Marcia Smart, shared three of her tasty and healthy recipes.

HOUSTON – Say goodbye to the same old lonely sandwich!

There are simple ways to upgrade your kids’ lunch boxes in the new school year!

Culinary instructor and owner of Smart In The Kitchen School, Marcia Smart, shared three of her tasty and healthy recipes.

Check out all her tips and instructions in the video above.

Veggies and Homemade Ranch

Ingredients:

• 1 cup mayonnaise

• 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk or more for a thinner consistency

• 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

• 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

• 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

• 1/2 lemon, juiced or more to taste

• 1 tablespoon minced chives

• 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions:

In the bowl of your food processor, add all the ingredients. Pulse. Lift up a spoonful of dressing and pour it back into the bowl. It should run freely; if not, thin it out with additional buttermilk. Taste for salt and lemon juice; adjust seasoning if necessary.

Refrigerate for up to one week.

Notes:

Serve this tangy homemade ranch with a variety of raw vegetables, including English cucumbers, colorful peppers, radishes, cherry tomatoes, carrots, and celery.

For more details, click here.

Homemade trail mix

- Popcorn

- Pretzels

- Cashews

- Peanuts

- Dried Cherries

- M&M’s

- Cheeze-Its

- Raisins

- Chocolate Chips

- Animal Crackers

Gluten-Free Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Ingredients:

• 1 cup gluten-free baking flour

• 2 tablespoons ground flax seed

• 1 teaspoon baking powder

• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

• ½ teaspoon salt

• ⅔ cup packed light brown sugar

• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

• 1/2 cup apple sauce

• 1 large egg

• 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

• 1 cup gluten-free old-fashioned oats

• 3/4 cup raisins

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, flax seed, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Whisk to combine and aerate the flour.

In a large bowl, add the brown sugar, butter, apple sauce, egg, and vanilla. Add flour mixture, oats, and raisins and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined.

Drop level tablespoons of batter onto the prepared baking sheet.

Bake until golden brown on the bottom, about 11-12 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining batter.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Substitutions:

Regular all-purpose flour works too. Or white whole wheat flour for extra fiber.

If you don’t have apple sauce, 1/2 cup of a mashed banana will also work.

Instead of raisins, try this with dried cranberries or dried cherries.

Smart also recommends downloading her free “Meal Plan Like a Pro” guide.

“It’s such a great way to get organized for the new school year,” she said.

You can access the guide, here.

And if you’d like to sign up for Marcia’s blog newsletter, which includes recipes and a free weekly meal plan, click here.


About the Author:

Beatriz is a producer for Houston life. She’s a dog mom who enjoys traveling and eating her way through new cities and cultures.