(Photo by Jess Sanchez)
How-To: Prep and Pack Quick Lunches for Kids
By Selma Komisky
Now that we are in the Back to School mode, moms are always trying to re-event quick, appetizing, healthier, lunches for their kid’s. Due to the demand of working moms and mothers with more than one child in the home, we need tips to help prepare lunches ahead of time and make life easier. Lunch approaches kids are hungry and thrilled with anticipation to open their lunch boxes to see what mom has prepared for them to eat. So why not put a surprise for them to look forward to?
Small zip lock bags are always good to pack food and are easy for young children to unzip. AND you won’t have to worry about using all your plastic containers or misplacing them. This way they can dispose of them when they are finished.
One tip is to always make your sandwiches day of to prevent bread from getting soggy (but do prepare what is inside the sandwich the night before [such as tuna, chicken, or egg salad]). When preparing sandwiches you grab your tupperware filled with the salad and scoop onto bread. You can also be sure to take inventory night before to see what kind of cold cuts you have or don’t have available so you can make a quick run to the grocery store for deli.
Often young children lose their ice packs from their lunch box, So another good idea is to freeze drinkable yogurt that you send as a part of their meal. It will defrost by lunchtime and helps preserve the food (a chilled water bottle works as well).
Here are some great quick and yummy lunch ideas your kids will love:
Hard Boil Eggs
Pre-peeled hard boil eggs make delicious deviled egg sandwiches or your kids can eat them as they are.
Crunchmaster Cheezy Crisps and Grammy Crisps
These snacks are gluten and peanut free and are 50% less fat. These cheese crackers-and graham crackers are the perfect anywhere snack for your kids.
These new packs of fruit are squeezable and your kids can eat em right out of the packs. They also come in apple pineapple & banana pineapple flavors.
Newtons Fruit Thins (Cherry Vanilla)
Crispy thin cookies made with whole grains and dried cherries have only about two grams of sugar per piece – A nice treat that you won’t have to worry about the sugar.
Yogurt on the Go
like Go-gurt, kids will love these squeezable tubes and they are a good way to get your kids to eat something healthy.
These little meals come in varieties of small lunch meat, cheese, and a snack. Note to moms: you can easily prepare your own lunchable and cut up your own pieces of choice lunch meat and cheese without the preservatives and save money!
Laughing Cow is creamy and easy to spread on some wheat or gluten free crackers. Cubes of cheese is also easy and accessible as well as light string cheese or mini Babybel.
These are convenient and kids like to eat them as they squeeze it out of pack.
Dannon Oikos Yogurt Dips
These mild flavored dips are perfect for dipping raw veggies or crackers. I suggest trying the Cucumber Dill.
Mom you can choose your own favorite recipe. Make it fun and invite your kids to help bake with you.
Organic Tortilla Wraps
For a healthy treat try using wheat tortillas and adding some turkey or rolled up pieces of ham, lettuce, tomato, and avocado. In the middle, spread semi-soft cheese and diced pieces of pineapple.
Veggie Chips or Rice Cakes
The awesome alternative to the potato chip.
Prep & rinse beforehand into bite size pieces for your kids using apples, cantaloupe, grapes, peaches, pears, bananas, or oranges peeled and sectioned.
Celery and carrot sticks, yellow and red peppers slices, as well as sliced cucumbers make a great snack. Make sure you pack ranch dressing for your child to dip or whatever dressing is their fav.
Mixed nuts with dried fruit is always good. Note: make sure your child’s school is not peanut-free or have any children with allergies.
Bake the night before and always have fun! Let kids help and keep it simple.
This is fun when making shapes or different colors.
Juice Boxes and Water
Chill the night before and make sure juices are natural without too much sugar.
Amy’s Bean & Cheese Snacks
Containing pinto beans, brown rice, cheese, and tomatoes stuffed into a small soft wrapper these burritos are made with organic flour.
Buy the small boxes ready-to-go or try golden raisins (some kids prefer these instead).
Olives to Go! by Pearls
These are a super snack with ten, black pitted olives that come in a portable cup with an easy-to-peel lid.
Mixed Green Salad
Put a packet of croutons and ranch dressing, bacon bits, olives, and you’re ready to go!
Save a slice from dinner the night before for lunch the next day.
Pepperidge Farm Swirl Bread
Containing cinnamon, raisins, and pumpkin spice, you can spread cream cheese, peanut butter, or Nutella, or let them enjoy it as is.
Ethnic Asian Snack
Seaweed jerky or crackers are fun and tasty mini California Rolls!
Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels
A tasty sweet and salty snack
Fill a wheat tortilla with the shredded cheese of your choice and melt it. Cut into triangles and keep warm in foil or a thermal bag.