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32 Recipes for the Latch-Key Kid in All of Us!

Coming home from school (or work) and foraging for food doesn't have to be knotty. These recipes will satisfy that need to nosh before dinner.

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Ham and Cheese Pockets

These unique sandwich pockets are filled with ingredients most kids enjoy. —Callie Myers, Rockport, Texas
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BLT Tortillas

I first sampled these BLT wraps at a bridal luncheon years ago. Now I frequently make them for our weekly neighborhood dinners. —Darla Wester, Meriden, Iowa
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Strawberry Watermelon Slush

We like to relax on the back porch with glasses of my slush after a long, hot day. Strawberries and watermelon blend up with lemon juice and sugar for an instant refresher. —Patty Howse, Great Falls, Montana
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Snackin' Granola

Granola's a popular treat with children, and this one couldn't be easier to prepare. I flavor it with lots of tasty good-for-you ingredients. It's perfect to send in bag lunches or to serve after school. I've also used it as an "in-the-car" treat when we take family vacations. —Marlene Mohr, Cincinnati, Ohio
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Fiesta Pinwheels

Whenever I serve this make-ahead, easy pinwheel recipe, they disappear fast. When a friend at the office shared them with me, I knew in one bite I'd be taking her Mexican pinwheels home for the holidays. —Diane Martin, Brown Deer, Wisconsin
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Flying Saucers

These handy pita pocket sandwiches can be filled and served ready to eat... or you can set up a make-your-own buffet with ingredients that the kids can choose to suit themselves.
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Dogs in a Sweater

For a new twist on an old favorite, try these skewered hot dogs wrapped with breadstick dough and baked. They're fun to dip in ketchup, mustard or ranch dressing. The dressed-up dog recipe comes kid-tested from the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Turkey Ranch Wraps

Here's a cool idea that's ready to gobble up in no time. It's a terrific use for deli turkey. Just add lettuce, tomato, green pepper, shredded cheese and ranch dressing for a flavorful blend. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Lunch Box Pizzas

When you have these fun-to-make mini pizzas, it's no challenge finding lunch fare that the kids enjoy. Plus they pack nicely in sandwich bags and travel well, so there's no mess. —Rhonda Cliett, Belton, Texas
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Lunch Box Special

Dates, orange juice and apples bring zest and crunch to the plain old peanut butter sandwich. —Bernice Morris, Marshfield, Missouri
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Easy Taco Pizza

Convenient prebaked crust makes this tasty taco pizza as easy as can be. It's a great recipe, especially if you have teenagers. I keep the ingredients on hand so that we can whip up this filling meal anytime. —Mary Cass, Baltimore, Maryland
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Rocky Road Fudge Pops

These sweet frozen treats are simple to prepare and guaranteed to bring out the kid in anyone. The creamy pops feature a special chocolate and peanut topping.—Karen Grant, Tulare, California
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Apple Pie Sandwiches

I created this apple sandwich one autumn when we had an abundant apple crop. We enjoy these sandwiches for breakfast and dessert all year long. —Gloria Jarrett, Loveland, Ohio
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Fruit and Cheese Kabobs

We came up with this fresh and fruity summer snack idea. It's easy to make ahead and carry to the ballpark, beach or playground, and the cinnamon-spiced yogurt dip adds a fun touch kids love. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Ranch Snack Mix

This is a wonderful fast-to-fix munchie. The recipe makes tons and doesn't involve any cooking. It's a cinch to package in individual snack bags, it keeps its crunch and it's a savory alternative to the cakes and pies usually offered at bake sales. —Linda Murphy, Pulaski, Wisconsin
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Apple Cartwheels

Stuff apples with a yummy filling, and then slice the fruit into rings to make eye-appealing after-school snacks. The filling is an irresistible combination of creamy peanut butter, sweet honey, miniature chocolate chips and raisins. —Miriam Miller, Thorp, Wisconsin
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Fruity Peanut Butter Pitas

My kids ask for these pita sandwiches all the time. They haven’t noticed that as good as they taste, they’re also good for them. —Kim Holmes, Emerald Park, Saskatchewan
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Chili-Lime Snack Mix

Why buy a pricey bagged snack mix when you can easily make a better-tasting one at home? Create a Southwestern sensation with chili powder, cayenne pepper and a twist of lime. —Julie Beckwith, Crete, Illinois
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Pepperoni Roll-Ups

Here is a fast appetizer recipe that goes over well at my house. Each bite has gooey melted cheese and real pizza flavor. Try serving them with pizza sauce for dipping. —Debra Purcell, Safford, Arizona
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Peanut Butter Cereal Treats

Kids will love these colorful, crunchy bars. They’re a fun twist on the traditional marshmallow crispy treats…and because they’re so easy, older kids could whip up a batch on their own! —Christie Porter, Shipshewana, Indiana
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Turkey Lunch-Box Wraps

These wraps taste wonderful cold or warmed in the microwave. They make a great brown-bag treat. —Denise Marshall, Jacksonville, Florida
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Healthy House

“When my daughter Jessica was in the 3rd grade, she had an extra-credit assignment dealing with nutrition,” says Mary Wollensak of Brookfield, Wisconsin. “While I was combing through cookbooks, Jessica came up with this! Everyone at school loved it, and since then, she's been eager to help in the kitchen and experiment with new recipes.”
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Mini Pizza Cups

Served hot or cold, these little pizzas are wonderful. Their small size makes them ideal for an after-school snack or a kid-friendly party. Plus, they’re so easy to make that little ones can help you in the kitchen! —Jane Jones, Cedar, Minnesota
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Hearty Beef Ravioli

In this fun family-friendly supper, we add our favorite taco toppings to beef ravioli. It's easy for kids to customize their own fixings for a no-fuss meal. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Crispy Pretzel Bars

I often make a big batch of these peanut butter-flavored cereal bars on days that I don't want to heat up the kitchen. Kids especially love them, so they're great for picnics, potlucks and school bake sales. —Jane Thompson, Eureka, Illinois
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White Chocolate Party Mix

You won't be able to stop eating this irresistible white chocolate party mix. The light, sweet coating is great over cereal, peanuts, pretzels and M&M's. —Norene Wright, Manilla, Indiana
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Granola-To-Go Bars

This grab & go goodie makes a hearty snack for a long day out. Chewy and sweet, these fruity bars that will have you craving more! —Sally Haen, Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
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Mini Pizza Muffin Cups

I just baked these mini pizzas and the kids are already demanding more. The no-cook pizza sauce and refrigerated dough make this meal a snap. —Melissa Haines, Valparaiso, Indiana
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Fruit Kabobs with Cream Cheese Dip

These fruity kabobs are so refreshing on a warm day. They're also a quick and easy meal for get-togethers. —Kathleen Hedger, Godfrey, Illinois
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Nacho Popcorn

My husband and I like to munch on this while watching TV. The nacho flavoring is a zesty alternative to butter and salt. —Linda Boehme, Fairmont, Minnesota
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Mini Mac & Cheese Bites

Young relatives were coming for a Christmas party, so I wanted something fun for them to eat. Instead, the adults devoured my mini mac and cheese. —Kate Mainiero, Elizaville, New York
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Garlic Bread Pizza Sandwiches

Garlic Bread Pizza Sandwiches

I love inventing new ways to make grilled cheese sandwiches for my kids. This version tastes like pizza. Using frozen garlic bread is a timesaver. —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas

Sue Stetzel
Sue has been working with Taste of Home since 2011. When she isn’t writing, she’s answering your burning cooking questions and working with our team of Community Cooks. She spends her free time cooking, crafting, and volunteering for various organizations in her home town.
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