Towards the end of 2017, I’ve been getting into a bit of a rut with school lunches for my kindergartener. This was declared when I found his lunch container returning full one too many times. I’m not gonna lie, it was certainly disappointing. But before giving up altogether, I decided to fight the good fight.
I realized I needed get back in the ring to beat the rut by rotating in some new ideas and maybe consider some new lunch gear. Kids love novelty and flashy new containers of all kinds and I’m wiling to try anything. I’ve been resistant to getting special lunch gear for a while – not sure if it’s the minimalist or frugal side of me, but I was essentially using a bunch of smaller containers we already had and mixing and matching depending on what was packed.
So I decided to invest in a planet box rover – if you haven’t heard of this bento-style lunch box, you might balk at the price like I did when I first heard about it. But after positive reviews from my friend I decided to give it a try. The container is all stainless steel and has several compartments – think TV dinner style – which forces you to pack a variety of foods. It seems to make lunch more enjoyable to have more variety at a time and in one container – much like the way school lunch is presented. I also started adding a little treat in the center of the container – which have been chocolate chip pieces.!
Since using this new system at the beginning of this month, I’ve noticed more enthusiasm for packed lunches and it returning home close to empty – woohoo! Win for mom (for now)!
To keep the momentum going I’ve been looking for other easy, nutritious lunch ideas and here are some I want to try.
- Kale Pesto on Caprese Salad – the kiddo likes all the components of this salad and it seems simple to assemble in the morning with pre-made kale pesto.
- Ginger Soy Chicken meatballs – I’ve made these before for a quick dinner and they get gobbled up. Next time I’ll
doubletriple batch and freeze for lunches!
- Korean veggie omelettes – Can’t believe I didn’t think of this before. The kids love this stuff already as a dinner side dish, so I think it would translate nicely for lunch. I would serve it with some rice and a roasted seaweed pack. Side note: do you know how to spell omelette?? I just learned how.
- Bacon and Egg Tortellini – Yes! This would fall under a Trader Joes hack. I usually pick up a pack of spinach tortellini from TJs but I love the idea of adding some more protein with a hard boiled egg and sprinkling so bacon on it. Perfect for days daddy decides to make bacon for breakfast.
- Greek Chicken and Veggies (make-ahead bowl) – This one involves some prep ahead of time, but seems worth it to make one for myself too!
This whole exercise inspired me to research what kids around the world are eating for lunch. I’m sure you’ve heard about how differently the French and Japanese approach kids lunch? If not, take a look!
What about you? If you pack your kids lunch, what are your go-tos and favorites?