Sack Lunch Ideas For Happy & Healthy Kids

Creative Foods & Ideas for Kids Lunches

Make lunches healthy by including: one serving of fruit (grapes, bananas, applesauce) one serving of vegies (carrot sticks – they have mini packs at Trader Joes, tomatoes, snap peas), one serving protein (peanut butter, deli meats, hard boiled egg, string cheese, yogurt). Use wheat bread for sandwiches. Encourage kids to drink water instead of a lot of juice. Keep sweets to a minimum.

–Submitted by K. Avery: Give your child a ‘hot’ lunch by putting heated chicken nuggets, waffle sticks, fish sticks etc.. into a thermos. They will stay warm till lunch and are a nice change of pace from the traditional sandwich.

–Submitted by S. Buranen: I have found that if I keep my daughter’s lunch simple, she is more likely to eat it. Rather than put every food group in her lunch box, I give her a sandwich (crust cut off and in fourths) and one fruit or vegetable item.

–Submitted by B. Wright: I have burned out 2 of my kids on Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, so now I have to try hard to be more creative. My kids like trail mix that I make using a variety of cereals, raisins or crasins, and pistachios.

–Submitted by J. Wagner: My 3-year-old son enjoys “”dipping”” things: bananas in yogurt, pita in hummus, vegetables in peanut butter, and whole wheat pita in pureed sweet potatoes or tomato soup.

–Submitted by J. Butler: Kids love dips and smoothies! For the smoothie, I send a yogurt & straw. At lunch, he shakes the yogurt up, removes the plastic top and puts the straw through the foil top. By that time of day, the yogurt is nice and soft and can easily be sipped through a straw-a fruit smoothie! I also send cut up fruits, vegies, meats and cheeses in a handy tupperware that has a couple of dividers. In one of the dividers, I serve a dip to add appeal! For one of our favorites, we combine plain yogurt, cream cheese, peanut butter, and a tiny bit of real maple syrup. Yum! Yum! Finally, our problem isn’t so much lunch as it is getting a breakfast in before school. (My son loves to sleep in!) So on Sunday evening, I make up a bunch of waffles and freeze them. When we are in a mad rush to get out of the door in time for school, we can take a waffle out of the freezer, pop it in the toaster and he usually ends up eating it on the way to school folded over with a bit of peanut butter or sliced bananas. I make them more nutrituous than the store bought frozen ones so I can feel good about him getting a good start to the day!

–Submitted by P. Appel: Mix chocolate soy milk and regular milk for a special treat – it will taste like chocolate milk but not have as much chocolate. The regular milk also masks the taste of soy if they don’t like the soy flavor.

–Submitted by C. Peterson: Make a week’s worth over the weekend with all the non-parishables (raisins, crackers, juice box, whatever else) and then just toss in a fresh sandwich, gogurt and/or cheese stick in the am. Utilize more whole foods which are easier to pack, cheaper and healthier: nuts, apples, homemade granola bars, dried fruits, bread, etc. Only pack two or three things…more likely to get eaten. Don’t pack desserts, save those for a treat after school.

–Submitted by M. Dusette: My kids don’t eat much at school because they are soo busy (distracted). Therefore, what I do put in their lunch really has to count. I’ve had great success with 1/2 sandwiches that the kids help me make – (turkey/cheese, or PBJs). String cheese or cheese sticks are always popular, cashews are a high protein snack. Baby carrots are accepted, BUT, if I buy the Trader Joes prepackaged carrots and dip… well, then, I’m just super mom. My kids also enjoy Clif Bars which do have adequate protein to include in a lunch. Grapes travel well as do applesauces. I also include a small water in their lunch box. We steer clear of Gogurts – too messy, and avoid chips, cookies and other snack type items. They can have a treat for an after school snack IF they did a good job on their lunch.

–Submitted by L. Mathews
A good, healthy kids lunch is hummus and whole wheat pita bread cut into triangles. I also like to make “”ants on a log,”” which is celery with almond/cashew butter spread on it, and raisins on top.

–Submitted by Jennifer
My daughter loves to have the basics in her lunch – cheese sticks, go-gurts, hot dogs, and for her veggie she loves edaname beans! They are fun to unwrap and easy to pack!

Catered Lunches

Ralphs Grocery has great kids meals that come in a fun box with a sandwich, fruit, chips, animal crackers, juice and a toy. $1.99 and up

Healthy Alternatives to Brown Bagging It

–sumbitted by Leah Diamond, Healthy Cooking With Kids
Before we know it, it’ll be time to go back to school. Many parents ask themselves each day, “What can I make for my child’s lunch?” Hopefully something that’s tasty, nourishing, and will keep him or her from being hungry until after school. As parents, it’s sometimes hard to keep the variety changing. Packing a nutritious lunch can be a creative fun experience that may be shared with your child or children. One hint to help fussy eaters is to let them help prepare meals and snacks. By including your children in the process of making school lunches, and the decisions about what they will take, you make them feel important, and they’ll be more likely to eat the lunch you have planned together. Planning a week’s menu with your child ahead of time (perhaps every Sunday) will help you get through the “brown bag reality”. Here are some new ideas for lunches:  Instead of the old standby of peanut butter and jam, try another nut butter such as almond or cashew butter. Mix cream cheese with unsweetened crush pineapple as a sandwich spread. Make a mixture of equal parts nut butter and trail mix, then spread on a toasted bagel or English muffin. Mix nut butter with grated carrots and a handful of chopped nuts and/or raisins, then spread on wheat bread or put into a pita. Spread nut butter on leftover pancakes or waffles. Make a tuna, chicken, or egg salad and put it in a fresh tortilla with extra veggies to make a wrap. Use dinner leftovers to create the next day’s lunch, for example pasta dishes, pizza, casseroles, etc. Most of us remember our favorite childhood foods such as pizza, peanut butter and jam sandwiches, or macaroni and cheese. The taste we develop for certain foods as a child, stays with us into adulthood and influences our dietary choices. That’s why it makes sense to start children out with tasty and healthful food and let them help in the planning and preparation as much as possible.

Leave a Comment

Powered by WordPress | Deadline Theme : An AWESEM design