Healthy Back to School Lunch Ideas and Tips

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Healthy Back to School Lunch Tips

Packing lunches can start to feel monotonous really quickly if you don’t have a lot of variety. This year I’ve been challenged to really thinking outside of the lunch box when it comes to packing healthy foods for my kids.

And since it’s the first official year I’ll be packing my son’s lunch for Kindergarten (and not just a day out like last year) I’m kind of excited to find new ideas to keep things fresh and exciting for him. Since we also have to send along a snack, I’ve included some snacks in here as well.

And, of course, I’ll be sending along some cute lunch box notes for my son to read as well when he’s munching on his goodies.

If your brain is really stuck on what to pack this year then check out some of these tips:

Healthy Back to School Lunch Tips

Keeping Things Bright

To mix things up this year, I really wanted to do something colorful and healthy. That’s where I got the idea of parfaits for their school lunches. Have the kids help make their school lunch parfaits the night before if that gets them excited.

You can use easy to open containers to help keep things from getting too messy at lunch time. I like to use whatever organic fruit I have on hand, which can get really colorful.

Healthy Back to School Lunch Tips - parfaits

From Left to Right Clockwise: Broccoli, Grapes, multi-grain crackers, Honest Kids Tropical Tango Punch, vanilla yogurt parfait with granola and strawberries, almonds, Applegate ham, Organic Valley sharp cheddar

DIY Lunchables

I’ve always loved the idea of how easy store bought lunchables are, but sadly they’re not very healthy. I’ve recruited my whole family into loving the idea behind DIY lunchables.

All you really need to complete this fun and healthy lunch idea is to have a container with trays or at least separate containers to give the lunch that ‘lunchable’ feel.We LOVE our Laptop Lunches bento box to make things easy at lunchtime. I pack organic juice, crackers, lunch meat, fruit, and then a “bakery” treat. My kids really love the variety that a DIY lunchable brings to the table.

Healthy Back to School Lunch Tips - pizza lunchable

From Left to Right Clockwise: Honest Kids Tropical Tango Punch, Cucumbers, Annie’s Bunny Grahams, Applegate Farms Turkey Pepperoni, Marinara Sauce, organic string cheese, french bread slices, peach

Mix It Up

If you are really having a hard time finding things to pack for your child, consider trail mix. My kids really love the idea behind trail mix because it’s yummy and I love it because it’s easy. And only includes 3 simple ingredients: granola, almonds, and raisins!

Even if your children can’t have nuts, there are a variety of items you can mix together to create the ultimate trail mix for your little one. Think of other dried fruits, maybe some mini chocolate chips if they are looking for a small treat? The possibilities are endless.

Healthy Back to School Lunch Tips - trail mix

From Left to Right Clockwise: fruit salad, carrots, Honest Kids Tropical Tango Punch, trail mix, bagel with cream cheese

Dip it Good

One thing we’re discovering this year is yummy and healthy dips to pack in lunches. Let’s face it, packing veggies and fruits can seem bland, we are mixing it up with various dips. Hummus is one dip your children might love trying.

You can also create yummy fruit dips out of organic greek yogurt and chia seeds. With this base, you can add a variety of items to your fruit dip, like chocolate chips and peanut butter. This really brings variety and fun to any school lunch (plus it keeps it healthy).

Healthy Back to School Lunch Tips - dips

From Left to Right Clockwise: cantalope, ants on a log (with almond butter), Honest Kids Tropical Tango Punch, french baguette, pasta with marinara sauce

Multiple Fruits & Veggies

I’ve noticed that when I pack my kids a variety of fruits and veggies it gets gobbled up. My kids love opening up their lunch to find a garden full of fruits and veggies. Of course, I like to arrange it so it’s more fun to eat. I might make the container represent a forest with broccoli as trees and little grapes as the bottom part of the forest.

If I want to make things bright, like a rainbow, I’ll pack cut up a green and red apple, peel an orange, and add red and green grapes. Eating with color is always more fun, especially when it’s arranged to look cool.

How do you spice up school lunches while keeping them healthy?.

Lunch Box by Thirty One | Bento Box by Laptop Lunches | Container by U·Konserve

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Comments

  1. I love these ideas! My son is super picky. He has been taking school lunch because we get reduced lunch but he ends up getting a peanut butter sandwich every day with a milk and he isn’t eating anything else! I think I could modify some of your ideas above and he would love them! Thanks for the ideas! I’m actually excited about packing his lunch instead of dreading it!
    Leila recently posted…Rallying in Support of a Mini But Mighty Hero ChildMy Profile

  2. I try to add in special dips or just something different. Great ideas Danielle.
    Tiffany (Fabulous Mom Blog) recently posted…It’s Friday – looking back over the last 7 daysMy Profile

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