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Recipes for healthy back-to-school lunches

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(PIX11) -- Chef and author Brooke Parkhurst shares her recipes for healthy back-to-school lunches:

Italian White Bean “Hummus”
A great snack-time dip with pretzels & crackers or a perfect spread for lunch sandwiches.

  •         2 15 oz cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (*reserve 2 TBSPs liquid from the can)
  •         1 small clove garlic, chopped
  •         3 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese
  •         1/3 cup Pompeian extra virgin olive oil
  •         ½ teaspoon kosher salt + more to taste
  •         Freshly ground black pepper

Into the bowl of a food processor, pour the drained and rinsed cannellini beans. Add the 2 tablespoons reserved liquid, garlic, parmesan cheese salt and pepper. Process until almost smooth. While the food processor is on, slowly stream in the olive oil. Taste and re-season if necessary. Serve room temp or cool. Will keep in the refrigerator up to one week

Roasted Vegetable ‘Sushi’ Sandwich Wraps
The shape of these sandwiches is as fun for the parents as it is for the kids. Remember, kids “eat” with their eyes first, just like we do! For best results—and for more organized early school mornings—make these sandwiches the night before and tightly wrap in plastic wrap. This will help them keep their shape.

Makes 4 wraps

  •         1 recipe Italian “Hummus”
  •         4 whole wheat sandwich wraps
  •         1 medium zucchini, cut into ½ inch strips
  •         1 medium yellow squash, cut into ½ inch strips
  •         1 red pepper
  •         1 orange or yellow pepper
  •         3 cloves garlic, chopped
  •         3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  •         Kosher salt to taste
  •         *optional- fresh arugula

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a large bowl, combine zucchini, yellow squash, peppers, garlic and olive oil. Toss to coat with oil and then sprinkle with salt. Lay out vegetables on 2 large baking sheets and place in the pre-heated oven. Roast veggies for approximately 20-25 minutes, or until the edges are golden (for the zucchini & squash) and the peppers have softened. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Core and seed the peppers and cut into long strips

To assemble:

Cut wrap into a large rectangle shape, trimming off the rounded sides. Spread 1-2 tablespoons of white bean hummus on base of wrap. Layer strips of zucchini, squash and red peppers on one end of the wrap. Top with arugula. Tightly roll the wrap, as you would a roll of wrapping paper. Once you have a cylinder shape, tightly secure with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight. The next morning, cut wrap into 4-5 ‘sushi-like’ pieces.

Black Forest Ham, Avocado & Swiss ‘Sushi’ Sandwich Wrap
This wrap will please the pickiest eaters- and will make mom feel good. The avocado spread is filled with Omega-3 fatty acids and the Hillshire Farm Naturals Black Forest Ham contains no preservatives, no artificial ingredients, no colors and no nitrates. Make 4 of these Sunday night and serve throughout the school week.

Makes 4 wraps

  •         4 whole wheat wraps
  •         1 package Hillshire Farm Naturals Black Forest Ham
  •         1 avocado, halved, pit removed
  •         ½ lemon, juiced
  •         1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  •         Kosher salt
  •         4 slices Swiss cheese
  •         Fresh greens like arugula or mixed baby greens

To assemble:

In a medium-sized bowl, combine scooped-out avocado, lemon juice, salt and olive oil. Mash with a fork until you have a good chunky consistency. Set aside.

Cut wrap into a large rectangle shape, trimming off the rounded sides. Spread 1-2 tablespoons of avocado mash on base of wrap. Layer three slices of ham, 1 slice of cheese and fresh greens. Tightly roll the wrap, as you would a roll of wrapping paper. Once you have a cylinder shape, tightly secure with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight. The next morning, cut wrap into 4-5 ‘sushi-like’ pieces.