While the end of the school year is almost in sight, there are still almost two months left of lunches to pack for the kiddos. Who knew filling a blue and red superhero or pink flowered lunchbox could be such a pressure-filled task?! It’s so easy to fall into a rut of packing the same things every day, especially when it’s a picky eater who will be opening that lunchbox.
Truth be told, packing lunch for my kids is actually something I look forward to because it just feels good knowing my kids are getting the nutrition they need and the foods they love. I’m a big believer in planning ahead–I always recommend packing lunches in the evenings so that you can be more thoughtful and methodical about your menus. The mornings are a total scramble for all of us and when you are so rushed, you’ll find yourself throwing things into their lunch bags that they really shouldn’t be eating. But don’t get stressed–school lunches can be simple and healthy.
I use this formula for starters: veggie, fruit, protein plus an extra, and build from there. Sometimes I add on and other times not. If you can just be sure you are offering one food from each of those categories, you can’t go wrong.
Here’s what a typical week looks like!
Monday: Hummus, Crunchmasters gluten free sea salt crackers, red peppers, apple slices, cut up grilled chicken sausage.
Tuesday: Whole wheat turkey wrap, popcorn, cucumbers, pear and homemade chocolate chip cookie.
Wednesday: Brown rice with edamame, strawberries, carrots, Matt’s Munchies, Siggi’s squeezable yogurt.
Thursday: Ezekiel bread with natural peanut butter and sliced bananas with cinnamon, pomegranate seeds, roasted cauliflower.
Friday: Turkey meatballs with sauce, carrots with Wholly Guacamole, apple, small piece of chocolate .
And as much as I’m about the food, I’m also a big fan of including a sweet note with a positive and motivating message. I’ll take any chance I can get to let my kids know how much I love them and what rock stars they are.