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Back to school meal prep and grocery shopping tips

grocery shopping woman

Back to School Month was established in the 1960’s to help families transition from their summer activities to beginning their shopping for school supplies and school clothes. As I write this, a decision hasn’t been made regarding grades K-12 kids returning to the classroom or if they will be homeschooled again. Consequently, the uncertainty can lead to increased anxiety for children and their parents. Along with this uncertainty, comes the added responsibility of shopping for more groceries and cleaning supplies, and cooking/preparing more meals/snacks for the family.

The struggles of COVID-19 quarantine are still fresh in our memories, yet 60% of Kansans reported the lockdown inspired them to make healthier choices. A study conducted by says the average American tried four new recipes during the quarantine and 20% decreased their alcohol consumption. So regardless of whether your children or grandchildren return to their schools or are homeschooled, follow these tips to keep up the healthier meals and snacks: 

  • Check what you have in your pantry, refrigerator and freezer first.
  • Make a shopping list, to be more efficient and make fewer trips to the store.
  • Keep nutritious foods (lean meats/poultry/fish) on hand that can be used in different ways.
  • Canned goods (black/kidney beans, tomatoes/vegetables without added salt, and fruit packed in fruit juice or water) are more of these nutritious foods.
  • Frozen foods can include breads or muffins or tortillas, as well as the usual pizza, meats and ice cream products.
  • Practice the “Cook once, eat twice” strategy of making a double batch of a recipe and then freeze one portion to save you time on another day.
About Teresa Sanborn RDN LD

Teresa Sanborn is a licensed dietitian with Touchpoint, which provides nutrition services to Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Manhattan.