Clean Eating For Teachers

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With the kids back in school, not only are moms asking me what to pack their kids for lunch, but even teachers are asking how they can fit clean eating into their hectic schedules!

Clean Eating For Teachers

The truth is, there is no single “right way” to do it. You have to do what works for you and your family. That being said, there are some things anyone can do to save time in a busy schedule. Particularly, teachers.

  1. If you don’t have one already, invest in a slow cooker. They aren’t terribly expensive (prices range greatly), and they cook you dinner while you do other pesky little things like working. You can assemble your meal the night before, place the pot in the fridge overnight, and then just drop it into the warmer and turn it one before you leave. Dinner is ready when you get home!
  2. Prep time on the weekends (or whenever you have some spare time) is critical. It only takes about 2 hours and it will help you tremendously. Boil eggs, clean and chop fruits and veggies, marinate meats, assemble casseroles for the freezer and even mix some spice blends and flavored waters or teas. Anything you can do ahead of time will get you through your week a lot easier and with fewer headaches.
  3. Stock your freezer with individual ingredients, ready-to-cook casseroles and other dishes ahead of time. Your freezer can really be your best friend when you don’t have a lot of time. It’s so much easier to just pop a clean, ready-made casserole in the oven and have dinner 30-40 minutes later (not even a whole tv show!) than it is to prep the entire thing when you get home.

If you are new to clean eating, any way you look at it, it will take a bit of effort at first and you WILL make mistakes. Maybe you’ll marinate some chicken in a dressing you THOUGHT was clean, only to find out it wasn’t. Don’t sweat it! Eat that chicken for dinner so you don’t waste it, but resolve not to buy that dressing again. Just jump in and do it, learning as you go. The only way to figure it out is to give it a try for a few months. Once you get into the swing of it, you’ll wonder how you ever did things any different!

And with all of that in mind, I have some 10 hour slow cooker recipes coming your way this week. I figure you teachers take such good care of our kids, the least I can do is try to return the favor in some way. I hope you’ll enjoy them!

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  1. Jorja Powers says:

    I was so excited when I saw the title of this article. I thought it was going to help with good ways to talk to the kids’ teachers about clean eating and getting them on board without overwhelming them. 🙂 Maybe that would be a great future article. I spoke to one of my daughter’s teachers (special ed) quite extensively and she got in the car with blue cupcake frosting on her mouth on Friday! That is one kid out of 7. 🙁

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Jorja – Interesting idea. I’ll have to think that one over. Thanks!

  2. Thanks for these tips!

    I also want to say that I was so touched with your comment about how teachers take good care of kids! I teach 7th graders! I love it and couldn’t imagine doing anything else! However, it seems like the media and popular culture hasn’t always shown the levels that teachers go to to care and educate. Sometimes this same attitude is expressed by the parents of students we teach!

    Again, thanks for the great post and the kind words!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Beth – My pleasure! I have great admiration for teachers. My grandmother was one, and I’m not sure I would have it in me to do that job. I think it takes a very special person to do a job like that with love and care.

  3. Thank you for focusing on us teachers! I appreciate your care for us and all working moms. I am excited to go back to school and have some delicious clean eating food in my slow cooker. I am off to the store to purchase my food for the week!!! Thank you!!! You are an inspiration!!!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Tammy – My pleasure! I hope you enjoy them! 🙂

  4. Your website is great and I love the ideas! In the future I would love info from you or others with ideas for “adult” lunches. I am trying to pack lunches for my husband without needing a microwave. We both don’t do huge portions, but he probably needs more than a child. 🙂 Any help with creativity would be sooooo appreciated!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Mary – You could always double up on the portions here. But I’m sure others will have some input for you too. 🙂

  5. Angela Mathers says:

    Great post- thanks for sharing! I especially loved the tip where you said, “Stock your freezer with individual ingredients, ready-to-cook casseroles and other dishes ahead of time.” It’s hard to consistently make healthy, homemade meals, but I’m doing my best to not fall back on take out or going out to eat!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Angela – Trust me, I know that’s a hard habit to break. But if you have food at home, it makes it much, much easier.

  6. I’m very excited for your recipes! As a teacher, I know that I have to stay organized and healthy so I can be at my best for my students. My school day begins at 7:45, and I don’t get home until after 7 because of my extracurricular schedule. I plan my meals during the week, do my grocery shopping on Saturday, and then cook all Sunday morning. I bring a stocked cooler with me every day and unpack and reload it each evening. My goal is to avoid cooking during the week, so my freezer has become my best friend. Everything I eat isn’t necessarily “clean”, but just the organization has helped me lose 5 pounds since the beginning of the school year. Thank you so much for considering teachers!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      JK – That’s awesome!! Great job! 😀

  7. M Rudolph says:

    Nothing is harder than trying to eat on schedule and to top it off clean when you are a Police Officer in a cruiser. Thank you for posting this. Even though it applies to Teachers. I pack a cooler with all my meals and have my protein shakes with me also “just incase” I get stuck at a call of service and time does not allow me to run to our station to heat up a meal. In fact I think you just gave me an idea on writing an article targeted towards professionals in Public Service mainly to women like myself that find it hard to balance the demands of our job and our health.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      M Rudolph – Fantastic! Happy I could help! 🙂 I think I read somewhere that they actually have little refrigerators now you can plug into the lighter. Probably not something allowed in a police car though. I’d love to read the article when it’s done!

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