Coming up with fresh school lunch ideas day after day is not an easy task – and even when you can think of neat new things to try, early morning is never a great time to bust out the fancy garnishes. This quick guide will help you build a practical lunch building kit so you can provide your child with fresh, healthy meals every single day.
Tools Of The Trade
Isn’t preparation a pain? The urge to opt for prepackaged snacks is easier to overcome by investing in convenience preparation tools. Vegetable steamers, rice cookers, waffle irons, slicers, dicers, and juicers make lunch prep fly right by. You’ll be able to whip up something good the night before and add the final additions in the morning – anything that will keep well in a lunchbox is bound to keep well in the fridge as well.
Most families do not need these single-purpose food processors but we think they’re perfect for smaller servings. If you do choose to expand your lunchtime prep set, make sure to choose devices that are easy to clean. Simplicity always has an advantage in this regard.
You don’t have to preplan every single meal, but having a few flexible staple ingredients on hand will ensure that you’re ready for anything. Whole grain wraps and tortillas are our favorite everyday ingredients – they can hold any common sandwich topping, and they make for great fruit wraps with the addition of a dollop of cream cheese. Curly, colorful pasta make a fun base for any leftover veggies or shredded meat.
We’re huge fans of using dinner leftovers for healthy school lunches but it’s important to add some variety. Farmer’s markets are a great place to meet people who grow organic fruits and vegetables, many of whom are willing to create a mixed box of in-season goods for those who request them. You may even be able to find a farmer or orchard owner willing to make deliveries directly to your home.
Sometimes coming up with new ideas each day is the hardest part. Nutrition magazines are a great way to find information about the healthiest meals and snacks, fancy cuisine websites will help you discover innovative recipes to try. Take some time to subscribe to a reputable pediatric health blog so you can learn more about the intricacies of diet and nutrition.
Don’t forget to ask your children about the cool foods they see at school. Even if their friends are bringing unhealthy fad snacks, you may be able to recreate the cool factor at home. Those little build-it-yourself pizzas are a good example – a few plain bagels and bowls of toppings make for a super fun lunch.
Childhood health and nutrition go hand in hand with good performance at school. Give your kids the best lunch break possible by making sure there’s always something delicious and nutritious in their brown bag. Kids always look forward to lunchtime – take steps to make sure that you’re looking forward to it, too.