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back to school recipes

Pack A Safe Back To School Lunch

For some, school has already started. For others, this next week will mark the end of summer and the beginning of a new school year. If you’re like many parents, that means back to packing daily lunches to keep your kids healthy. So why not chat about some delicious nutrition for back to school! I cannot imagine sending kids to school where all the nasty processed food is served. Has to make a parent proud to know they are sending a meal that is good for their health and environmentally responsible.  The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has these suggestions on how to pack a safe back to school lunch.


Stockpile healthy recipes that work. Before you can think about what to put in the lunchbox, why not consult the experts? Collect a bunch of healthy, kid-popular ideas that you can rely on for those busy weekday mornings. When healthy ideas and ingredients are on hand, they’re far more likely to land in the lunchbox! We often turn to these resources:


Lunch Lessons: Changing the Way We Feed Our Children, by Ann Cooper (aka The Renegade Lunch Lady) and Lisa M. Holmes. This gem includes great recipes as well as solid information on kids’ nutritional needs and suggestions (from personal experience) for improving school lunch programs.

The Best Homemade Kids’ Lunches on the Planet: Full of recipes to suit every age and stage, Laura Fuentes shows you how simple and easy it is to prepare food that’ll be the envy of the lunch table. The 200+ adorable and inspiring recipes in this book are just as much a joy to make as they are to eat! There are even entire lunchbox meals that are gluten-, soy-, and/or nut-free.
Reduce lunchtime waste. School lunches can generate lots of garbage, like any out-of-the-home meal. Go easier on the local landfill by sending lunch and snacks in reusable packaging and skip single-serve items. Some simple steps to limit your waste:


  • Find non-toxic, reusable containers, like stainless steel lunch boxes. If you choose plastic containers, pick them carefully (plastics marked with a #1, 2, 4 or 5 don’t contain BPA and may be better options. Check out the EWG’s plastics tips) and wash them by hand — the dishwasher’s extreme heat can cause chemicals to leach. Try to avoid soft-sided plastic lunchboxes.
  • Send tableware from home.
  • Skip the straws — or go reusable if you must.
  • Just say no to juice boxes.
  • Get inspired and learn more at Waste Free


Here are a couple waste reducing suggestions to get you back to school or work:


Posted in Food | August 28 th , 2015 | 0 Comments

Caramelized Onion, Spinach, Quinoa Quiche Bites

These caramelized onion, spinach, quinoa quiche bites are easy and loaded with healthy goodness. I am always looking for breakfast choices that are good for everyone, and these pass the test and more. Quinoa is dubbed a superfood and with good cause. Look at the health benefits in one cup of quinoa…and then you have eggs, spinach and onion on top of that…heavenly!


  • Protein: 8 grams.
  • Fiber: 5 grams.
  • Manganese: 58% of the RDA.
  • Magnesium: 30% of the RDA.
  • Phosphorus: 28% of the RDA.
  • Folate: 19% of the RDA.
  • Copper: 18% of the RDA.
  • Iron: 15% of the RDA.
  • Zinc: 13% of the RDA.
  • Potassium: 9% of the RDA.
  • Over 10% of the RDA for Vitamins B1, B2 and B6.
  • Small amounts of Calcium, B3 (Niacin) and Vitamin E.

and then you have eggs, spinach and onion on top of the nutritional punch from the quinoa!


Caramelized Onion, Spinach, Quinoa Quiche Bites




  • olive oil spray
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/4 C milk
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 C cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 C shredded swiss cheese
  • 1/2 C frozen spinach, thawed and liquids squeezed out
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper




Coat a 24 cup mini muffin pan generously with olive oil


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees


Cook quinoa according to package directions, let cool


Heat olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion, and season with salt, then toss to coat in oil. Arrange the onion into an even layer in the pan, and cook, stirring occasionally, but retaining an even layer. Cook until the onions caramelize, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.


In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper, until mixed.


Add the quinoa, mix evenly.


Add spinach, cheese, and onions, mixing until evenly combined.


Pour mixture into the mini muffin pans, careful to not overfill. The mix shouldn’t expand too much, but to be safe and avoid a mess, do not overfill.


Bake for about 20 minutes or until the eggs are set.


Let cool for a few minutes, serve immediately.



Posted in Food | August 11 th , 2015 | 0 Comments

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