school lunches beyond the sandwich
Children,  Food,  Nutrition,  Parenting Tips,  School

Beyond The Sandwich – Try Different Lunch Foods

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When you think about packed school lunches, PB&J or ham and cheese sandwiches come to mind. While sandwiches certainly make for a nice school lunch, they are not your only option. Mix it up by fixing something different for your kids this school year.

Make It A Wrap

A quick and easy alternative to a sandwich is a wrap. Grab some tortillas and fix your child’s favorite sandwich as a wrap. Wraps are also great for adding lots of lettuce and extra veggies. Hummus and cucumbers make a delicious vegetarian lunch option.

When you’re done adding your toppings, roll it up like a burrito and if desired, cut it in half. The wrap is good as is, or you can pack a small serving of salad dressing to dip. Ranch is always a favorite around here. Just make sure you pack it in a small, airtight container so your child doesn’t end up with ranch all over her lunch box (ask me how I know).

Who Doesn’t Love Snack Food And Lunchables?

I have yet to meet a child that doesn’t love Lunchables. But have you looked at the price of those found at the grocery store lately? Plus I’m not the biggest fan of the food options. Why not make your own version instead with fresh ingredients and food you know your child will eat. Start with some sandwich meat and cheese cut into bite-sized pieces. Add some fresh raw veggies like sliced cucumber, cherry tomatoes, and baby carrots. Throw in some fresh or dried fruit and you have a delicious, healthy, homemade version.

Of course, you can turn any of your child’s favorite snack foods including popcorn, trail mix, crackers, cheese, fruits and veggies, and the likes into lunch. Grab a container with lots of little dividers (bento boxes are perfect) and fill them up with kid-friendly favorites.

Healthy Salads For Lunch

Salads are another great lunch option, particularly for older children. Get a container with a tight-fitting lid and add all your child’s favorite salad ingredients minus the dressing in there.

Start with a bed of lettuce greens, add raw veggies, croutons, bacon bits, nuts and seeds, and the likes. Top it with a source of protein like cheese, hard-boiled egg, ham or turkey, or even some grilled chicken.

Pack dressing in a separate container along with a fork and napkin and lunch is done. You can assemble the salad the night before and store it in the fridge. The key is to make sure all your ingredients are very dry. If you’re washing your lettuce, use a salad spinner, or dry it on some paper towels before starting to pack it. Cutting everything into small bite-sized pieces will ensure that the lunchtime salad is easy to eat.

A Couple of Kid-Friendly Recipes

pizza muffins

Pizza Muffins

Perfect for an easy kids' lunch. You can also use your imagination to add some variety to the simple to make muffins.
5 from 1 vote
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Each Salt and Dried Basil
  • 1 Cup Cheddar Cheese cubed
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Cup Yogurt
  • 1/4 Cup Butter melted
  • 1/4 Cup Pizza Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Mozzarella shredded

Instructions
 

  • Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, and basil. Stir in cheddar cubes.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, yogurt and butter until smooth. Stir into flour mixture just until well combined and no dry spots remain. Add batter into muffin cups, dividing evenly. Spoon 1 tsp. pizza sauce on top of each muffin; sprinkle each with shredded mozzarella.
  • Bake at 400 F for 20 minutes or until golden and a toothpick inserted in center of one of middle muffins comes out clean. Let muffins cool in the pan for at least 5 minutes before removing, then let cool completely on a wire rack. (Freeze muffins in an airtight container for up to 1 month; defrost at room temperature.)

Notes

Sides:
Spinach salad with dressing
Fruit punch
Keyword muffins, pizza
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

mini calzone

Mini Calzones

A simple-to-make meal that can serve as a lunch or a snack. You can mix it up by adding your favorite ingredients to have different flavor combinations.
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Roll Your Favorite Biscuits
  • 1/2 Ricotta Cheese
  • 2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella
  • 2 tsps. Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • Dash Salt
  • Dash Garlic Powder

Instructions
 

  • Open the biscuits and roll each one out flat with a rolling pin. If the dough sticks to the rolling pin take a little bit of flour and sprinkle over the rolling pin.
  • For each biscuit add a 1/4 tsp. of Parmesan cheese onto one half of the flattened biscuit. Then add 3 Tbsps. of mozzarella and a tsp. of ricotta. Sprinkle with a little salt and garlic powder. Fold the biscuit over on itself. Crimp with a fork.
  • Cook at 350F for 14-17 minutes or until the biscuit is golden brown.

Notes

Sides:
Spaghetti sauce for dipping
Green salad with dressing
Iced tea
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Do you have any cool things that you make for your child’s lunches? Let us know in the comments!





Loving Life — The Reboot!

Dominique

This article provides general information and discussion about health and related subjects. The information and other content provided in this article, or in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. Consult your own physician for any medical issues that you may be having.

Beyond The Sandwich – Try Different Lunch Foods

4 Comments

  • Angie Vallejo

    When my boys were little and in public school, the hardest thing seemed to be packing lunches that they would eat! With my oldest, I had to be super creative, because a sandwich two days in a row would end up in the trash. The youngest would easily eat the same thing over and over, but not want any veggies. Come to think of it — they are still the same today! LOL

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