Back to school

Martha Stewart's back-to-school recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner

Aug. 27, 2014 at 7:15 AM ET

For many parents, back to school means back to a regular schedule of making breakfast, lunch and dinner for the family.

But it doesn't have to mean back to the grind, says Martha Stewart, who shared tips for healthy and delicious meals that are also quick and easy to make.

Video: TODAY kicks off a three-day series, “Back to School with Martha,” as the diva of domesticity demonstrates some delicious meals that are quick and easy to make, including cranberry-oat bars and chicken cutlets.

BREAKFAST

Most of us know that frenzied hurry that is the morning routine, so here are two breakfast recipes— yogurt-on-a-stick and breakfast burrito — that you can grab on your way out the door. 

Martha Stewart's yogurt on a stick
Lance Booth / TODAY

Yogurt-on-a-stick

A container of yogurt transformed into an ice pop isn't just a yummy treat for kids — its lid can catch messy drips. 

  • 6 ounce container of fruit yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons fresh berries/granola

1. Open a 6-ounce container of fruit and yogurt; drain excess liquid, and stir. Add a couple of teaspoons of berries and granola on top, pressing into yogurt a bit. 

2. Cut a slit in the lid, just large enough to insert a large craft stick. Put lid back on; insert stick halfway into yogurt. Freeze at least 5 hours. To unmold, dip cup into bowl of warm water.

Martha Stewart's breakfast burrito
Lance Booth/TODAY

Breakfast burrito

  • 6 large flour tortillas
  • 2 small smoked chorizo sausages (or linguica or other cured pork sausages), chopped
  • 10 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, grated
  • 1/3 cup prepared salsa (such as Muir Glen black bean and corn salsa)
  • Hot sauce (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Lay the tortillas on a baking sheet. Place in the oven for 1 minute.

2. Fry the chorizo in a hot pan for 1 minute, then add the eggs and scramble. Meanwhile, sprinkle cheese over each tortilla. Return the tortillas to the oven and allow the cheese to melt, about 1 minute. Remove from the oven.

3. Divide the eggs and sausage evenly among the tortillas, piling the eggs and sausage in the center. Top each one with a tablespoon of salsa and drizzle with hot sauce, if using.

4. One at a time, fold the bottom edge of each tortilla up and over the eggs and sausage, fold in each side edge to form an open pocket, then fold down that edge. If not eating immediately, wrap tightly in foil.

Martha Stewart's lunch box
Lance Booth / TODAY

LUNCH

When it comes to packing brown bag lunches, it’s east to get in a rut. Martha offers two fun twists on the boring sandwich — mini kebobs and sushi surprise — which are also a blast for kids to help make and can come in whatever variation your family prefers. 

Pack with a piece of fruit, a snack (such as cranberry oat bars) and a reusable water bottle. Remember to also add personal a note, says Martha.

Martha Stewart's mini kebobs
Lance Booth / TODAY

Mini kebobs

Instead of a deli meat sandwich, serve sliced ham, turkey, cheese and tomato on toothpicks.

Martha Stewart's sushi surprise
Lance Booth / TODAY

"Sushi" surprise

  • 2 sandwich bread slices, flattened
  • 4 cucumber and 4 carrot matchsticks, (each 6 inches long)
  • Cream cheese spread, (3 tablespoons cream cheese mixed with 1 1/2 tablespoons sour cream)

1. Flatten bread slices with a rolling pin. Spread cream-cheese mixture over slices. 

2. Lay 2 carrot and 2 cucumber matchsticks at the bottom of each slice — let ends hand over edges. Roll up bread, pressing gently to seal, then cut each roll into 4 equal pieces.

Martha Stewart's cranberry oat bars
Lance Booth / TODAY

Cranberry-oat bars

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup rolled old-fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseeds
  • 1/2 cup pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds)
  • 3/4 cup large unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup dried cherries or cranberries, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat oil and brown sugar in a bowl on medium speed until well combined, about 3 minutes. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Add flour, baking soda, and salt; beat until combined. Stir in remaining ingredients until well combined. Refrigerate dough until firm, about 1 hour.

2. Drop heaping tablespoons of dough, 2 inches apart, onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake until golden, rotating sheets halfway through, 13 to 14 minutes. Let cookies cool completely on a wire rack before removing from sheets. Cookies can be stored at room temperature up to 2 days.

DINNER

For dinner, it’s all about saving time. With breaded chicken cutlets, you can make them ahead of time, freeze them and then use when needed. They go from frozen to a prepared dinner in only fifteen minutes. 

And the options for meals are endless, from chicken parmesan to chicken tacos to chicken club sandwiches.

Breaded chicken cutlets

  • 4 cups plain panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • Coarse salt and pepper
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 pounds chicken cutlets (about 10)
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1. Prepare cutlets: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss panko, olive oil, and 1 teaspoon salt on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake, stirring twice, until deep golden brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely. (Crush a few handfuls, to help crumbs adhere.) Whisk eggs in a bowl. Pat dry chicken cutlets; season with salt and pepper. 

2. Dredge in flour, tapping off excess. Dip in eggs; coat with panko, patting to adhere. Lay cutlets in layers on a baking sheet, with parchment in between each. Freeze 2 hours, then up to 1 month in resealable plastic bags.

3. Bake cutlets: Arrange on a wire rack set on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake at 450 degrees, flipping once, until cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes. (If cutlets are not frozen, bake 8 to 10 minutes.)

Martha Stewart's chicken parmesean
Lance Booth / TODAY

Chicken Parmesan

  • 6 baked breaded chicken cutlets
  • 12 fresh basil leaves, plus more for serving (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups homemade or store-bought tomato sauce
  • 1 1/4 cups grated mozzarella
  • Finely grated Parmesan, for serving

1. Preheat broiler with rack 4 inches from heat source. Top each cutlet with basil leaves, sauce, and mozzarella, dividing evenly. Broil until cheese is melted, 2 minutes. Top with Parmesan and more basil; serve.

Martha Stewart's chicken tacos
Lance Booth / TODAY

Chicken tacos

Slice cutlets into strips and layer onto toasted tortillas with mashed avocado, pico de gallo, and cilantro leaves.

Martha Stewart's chicken club sandwich
Lance Booth / TODAY

Chicken club sandwich

Top a cutlet with a slice of american or cheddar cheese and melt. Spread mayonnaise on a roll. Top with cutlet, 2 slices of cooked bacon, lettuce and tomato.

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