It’s that time of year again; I love back-to-school time. The excitement it creates, starting everything new. A new classroom and teacher. A fresh start. It is so exciting to get your supply list and shop for your brand-new school supplies. I can remember as a kid feeling so giddy, day dreaming about what the new school year would bring.

As a mom, my excitement is just as great. I am so excited for my kids for so many reasons, and they are just as excited. Where we live, we start the school year off in August, which is a month without any big holidays, so we need an excuse to celebrate and have a special family dinner. At my house, we like to celebrate going back to school just like a holiday and have a short list of traditions that we do every year.

Once you have read about our back-to-school dinner tradition, keep scrolling, and I will share some school dinner recipes with you. Those school nights can get hectic. Meal planning and getting to the grocery store before you are hit with all of those busy nights with extracurricular activities is key! You will love these school recipes, I have some delicious dinner ideas.

back to school treats and table setting

What to make for back to school celebrations

I personally like to home make a special dinner for my kids the night before the first day of school. This gives us a chance to gather as a family and talk about the excitement of the next day. I have seen other families do the same and even add yearly themes or goals for their family, which I would love to incorporate, but haven’t yet. Be sure to share some of the things you all do. I love hearing new ideas.

For dinner, I pick something my kids especially love. The last thing I want to do when celebrating their last night of summer is fight them to eat dinner. Grabbing everyone’s favorite take out dinner is also a great choice! For me, it is all about the family gathering, and delicious food makes that even better. Picking a meal that everyone loves isn’t always easy, but you’ve got this! If you are stressed getting school supplies gathered for the big day, make a couple easy recipes or maybe even something to go with a store bough rotisserie chicken.

Why create another thing for you to do?

I know, life is crazy! You are just wrapping up summer and soon you will have busy weeknights again with the school season- homework, sports, school activities and lessons. Why create another task for you to handle? It might sound crazy, but I love to get the whole family together for any reason. Starting a new school year can be very anxiety ridden for these little kids, new teacher, new classmates, new schedules, sometimes new entire buildings. I have found that is helpful to gather the entire family and chat about the next day. Sometimes just saying your worries out loud and talking through them helps the anxiety become more manageable.

back to school treats and table setting

Themed treats for back to school

Every single holiday, party or celebration is another amazing excuse to make a themed dessert. As a mom, I love having that creative outlet. Not only do I get to play with my food, but I get to be artistic, creative and my end result gets enjoyed by my family and friends. Here are some fun themed treat ideas:

Caramel Apples

These are so fun and easy to customize. Once you have dipped your apple in this homemade caramel, dip it in some chocolate and go to town. You can make them look like apples (I know, ironic) but it goes so well with the back to school theme! Dip the caramel apple in red chocolate, then roll it in some sugar for a pretty sparkle effect. Then you can pour some green chocolate in a leaf mold and place a cute green leaf on top. After you make a few themed caramel apples, make sure to make a few with all of your favorite toppings.

Sugar Cookie

This is the most customizable dessert out there! Oh, and it tastes amazing! Dye your frosting, grab some sprinkles and get creative! You can even match your red apple caramel apples and make your cookies look like red apples. Use these piping tips to achieve this look:

Setting the table for back to school

There are so many cute options for back-to-school table settings out on the market today. My favorite place to find them is My Mind’s Eye. With little effort, you can make your dinner table look very festive!

back to school treats and table setting

Is this just for little kids?

Nope! It is for kids of all ages! Really, my oldest son graduates this year, and we are putting on our back-to-school dinner, him included. It is nice to get him to sit with us for dinner with his busy schedule now that he is pretty much a full-grown adult. I wouldn’t have skipped out on it for the world, it is our very last year to include him before he moves out. I know he will look back and cherish these memories.

School Dinner Ideas

Okay, after the back-to-school dinner is over and the kids’ first day of school is over, what? I won’t leave you high and dry; let me give you some ideas for school dinners. Here are some easy meals and my family’s favorite meals. If providing comfort food around the dinner table for family dinner time on those busy school nights warms your heart, this is for you.

  • Fire Oven Pizza is one of those easy dinners. You prep the dough in the morning and then bake it at dinner time. It’s one of our family favorites.
  • Egg Breakfast Sandwiches are one of those quick dinners. You buy some croissants, throw in some scrambled eggs, cheese, and bacon, and you’re done! A very easy dinner recipe.
  • Turkey Pot Pie is a home-cooked meal that everyone looks forward to! You can make this with leftover turkey or pop a turkey breast in the oven. You can also sub the turkey for chicken if that is your protein of choice.
  • Savory French Toast Casserole is a delicious meal you prep in the morning or the night before. Then, at dinner time, pop it in the oven! You can even opt to make this for breakfast and get everyone a good start to their day.
Back to school set up

After-School Snacks

Here are some ideas for after-school snacks. If your kids are like mine, they come home from school and act like they have been starved all day long!