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Where to score back-to-school food freebies and deals

Restaurant chains are celebrating the return to school with tons of food discounts and freebies.
/ Source: TODAY

This will be a back-to-school season like no other. After much of last year was spent in virtual classrooms, many students and teachers are excited to be return to in-person learning.

A return to school means reunions with friends and beloved teachers. But there’s also another reason to be excited — restaurant chains nationwide are celebrating the season with food deals and discounts.

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit

This Texas-style barbecue chain is giving $5 off of its family packs with the code 5OFFPACKS through August 29. Dickey’s Classic Family Pack includes one pound of brisket, one pound of pulled pork, medium sides of potato salad, coleslaw, baked beans, fresh dinner rolls and your choice of sauce, so there’ll be plenty of leftovers to pack for lunch the next day. Every Sunday, this chain also has a deal where kids eat free with an order of $10 or more using the code KEFOLO.

Eastern Standard Provisions

While this technically a Labor Day deal, it’s also perfectly timed for back-to-school season. This online pretzel retailer is offering buy-one-get-one One-Timer Soft Pretzel Bites. Just add the bites to your cart and increase the quantity from one to two. Make sure to use code LABORDAYBOGO at checkout. This deal is good through August 30.

Einstein Bros.

Start your day off right with a good breakfast. Every Monday through September 17, get 40% off of a fresh-baked baker's dozen — just $7. This deal is available both in the bakery or for curbside pickup.

Fry the Coop

For the entire month of September, this Illinois-based chain is offering 50% off for all teachers at all locations. The offer is valid for all teachers with current school ID (can be any school district).

Lazy Dog

This restaurant has a fun TV dinner-inspired menu option where guests can take frozen made-from-scratch meals from the restaurant home with them. In celebration of back to school, stop in and buy two regular TV dinners and two kids' TV dinners and get 20% off when ordering online. Use code FAMILYTV by September 30.

Macaroni Grill

Now through August 31, stop by this pasta chain to nominate a favorite teacher to win a year’s worth of delicious dinners at The chain is also offering a $10 Teacher’s Meal, which can be added to orders placed through Macaroni Grill’s website. These purchased meals will be applied to a planned catered meal at a local elementary school during the week of September 7.

Moe’s Southwest Grill

Getting back into the daily routine of school can be rough. Give yourselves a night off from cooking dinner, because Moe's is doing free meals for kids every Sunday. This deal is good for children under the age of 12 with the purchase of an adult entrée of $6 or more.

Noodles & Company

This beloved noodle-centric chain is doing all sorts of great deals right now. Through August 29, Noodles Rewards Members can buy any small entrée or kids' meal and get a reward for $4 off $15 or more to use on their next order. The deal gets even better for the week from August 30 through September 6, when Noodles Rewards Members can buy any regular entrée and get another regular entrée for free. In September, there are weekly rotating free offers with the purchase of a regular entrée.


This California-based diner chain launched a kids-eat-free program just in time for the back-to-school season. Every Monday through Thursday until September 30, any child aged 10 or younger will receive one free kids' entree with any adult entree purchase. The offer is valid from 2pm through 10pm for dine-in only.