Back To School! I think we’re all ready to get back into a routine. New clothes are hanging in the closet, school supplies are neat and tidy, and I’m super motivated to pack my kids healthy lunches that they will actually eat.
I’ve been scouring Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, magazines - any place I can think of - for inspiration. (100 Days of Real Food is one of my favorites.) I’m really trying to prepare this year so we don’t get into the lunchtime rut. Hopefully some of these ideas and products will inspire you too!
First off, I’m a huge fan of the bento style lunch boxes with designated spaces (no food touching!!!). They keep everything in their place without getting crushed. There’s no need for a zillion zip lock bags and I don’t need to use as many individual containers. I love the PlanetBox Rover, it's stainless steel so it doesn't "hold" any colors or flavors from previous meals. And it's dishwasher safe, hooray! There are five different compartments and two containers - perfect for a good assortment of food (even a small treat). The Rover is on the expensive side, for sure, but I believe it's worth it - especially since I will have children in school for the next 12+ years!
I use these silicone muffin cups for additional storage – they’re great as snack cups at home too! I like to use the small plastic containers as well. They are perfect for a little snack like a salad or cut fruit.
My kids tend to go for the basics…nothing too out of the ordinary, but I’ve found that if things are ‘fun,’ they’re more likely to eat them. For example, crackers and cheese, peanut butter and jelly wraps (cut like sushi rolls), dips (hummus or yogurt), made-ahead pita pizzas or even homemade trail mix. After reading the 100 Days of Real Food lunch post, I made this list of ideas.
Now that we have chickens and fresh eggs, I may try to introduce hard-boiled eggs. Cindy’s family eats a lot of roasted veggies for dinner and I’m sure the leftovers (maybe with some quinoa) would make a delicious lunch. Also, these EcoFoodFitness granola bowls would make a great lunch option - check our our previous blog post for the recipe.
I like to give the kids a small treat with lunch because sometimes school is hard! A few years back I found UnReal Candy. They make favorites candies like M&Ms and Reese's with less sugar and better ingredients - which means no gluten, corn, or soy. You can check out their products here.
If you search Pinterest, you can find suggestions for non-sandwich lunches, vegan lunches, and allergen-free options. It’s amazing how far we’ve come from a squished PB&J with white milk and an apple - still one of my favorites!
Always looking for more ideas and awesome products to make packing school lunches easier and we'd love to hear your comments.