Back-to-School Ideas and Late-Summer Dinners from Food Network Magazine

Find the perfect recipes for celebrating the last days of summer.

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waffle chicken fingers


Photo by: Ryan Dausch

Ryan Dausch

August may be over, but summertime’s bountiful produce is still here — for now. Find the perfect recipes for celebrating the last days of summer in the September edition of Food Network Magazine. Before fall officially arrives and the bounty of stone fruit at the farmers market is replaced with buckets of apples, bake a pastry filled with nectarines or plums. What should also be on your to-do list: eating tomatoes of every shape and size and cooking with (a lot) of basil.

Complete with 50 easy bar cookie recipes and a special kids’ edition, this issue is also a great resource for back-to-school season. And Food Network Magazine staffers can vouch that even the kid-friendly recipes (think grilled cheese and chicken fingers) are just as tempting for adults. Read on for their favorite new recipes from the magazine and start cooking!

“I know the chicken tenders — Hawaiian, ramen, waffle (pictured above) and pizza — in our kids’ insert are geared toward a  slightly younger audience, but I want to try them all. Warning to all parents: You may love them as much as your kiddos.

“My must-try-at-home recipe this month is the roast basil chicken. Roast chicken is one of my favorite dinners to make (so impressive, yet so easy!), but I’ve never tried it spatchcocked or with basil. I’m excited to switch up my usual lemon-and-garlic approach.

“Our deputy art director, Stephen, and I decided that the calories wouldn’t count if we split a slice of the Grape Galette with Almond Cream once we finished shooting it on set. But then we couldn’t resist trying them all ( nectarine-rosemary [pictured below], apricot-plum and apple-blackberry) … maybe those calories counted after all, but it was totally worth it!”

— Ariana Phillips, Senior Associate Editor
nectarine galette


Photo by: Con Poulos

Con Poulos

“Galettes! I have always been a fan of galettes, so freeform and easy. While developing this story, we really thought about the fruits that were available at the farmers market. It’s definitely a great take on farm-to-table! (You can find all of the galette recipes in the Desserts and Drinks section of the recipe index.)

“Our Weeknight Dinners deserves a shout-out too! It’s such a great diverse, seasonal collection of a goodbye to summer. My favorite was Buffalo-Style Skirt Steak!”

—Vivian Chan, Recipe Tester
beef tenderloin


Photo by: Con Poulos

Con Poulos

“By far one of my favorite stories was Tomato Time! And I especially enjoyed the Buratta-Stuffed Tomato in particular. I love the simplicity of a good caprese salad with a juicy tomato and fresh basil, and that recipe just kicked it up a notch with the creamy Buratta. The heirloom tomato salad with pine nuts, pomegranate seeds, feta and mint is also great. The fresh flavors come together beautifully.

“Another seasonal feature I adore was the Big on Basil story. I channeled my Latin roots for the Beef Tenderloin with Basil Crema with Watermelon-Basil Salad and Grilled Plantains recipe. I love all of these components, and they complemented each other so well here. Although this dish seems a little more upscale because of the tenderloin, it is actually a great dish for easy summer entertaining.”

—Claudia Sidoti, Test Kitchen Director
brie grilled cheese


Photo by: Levi Brown

Levi Brown

“I am planning to cook my way through every grilled cheese recipe in an embarrassingly short amount of time. I’m most excited to try the brie and apricot brioche version, but let’s be honest — they all look amazing.”

—Erica Cohen, Associate Editor
strawberry crunch cake


Photo by: Andrew Purcell

Andrew Purcell

“I liked it so much I already made it! The Strawberry Crunch Cake from the Piece of Cake page! I surprised my daughter with it when she came home from day camp, and she gazed at it lovingly for about 10 minutes (I kind of cheated and made it without the ice cream in the middle — because my tiny freezer was too full to accommodate the cake!) before she had to sit down to dinner. And even then, she kept pointing out to me that she was staring at it and couldn’t wait for dessert. It was worth the wait — totally delicious! I should add: She also asked if I would make it again for her birthday.”

—Rory Evans, Executive Editor

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