Back to School Lunch Ideas

School is finally back in session! You can breathe a sigh of relief Mom, you get a break from entertaining your kiddos the entire summer. Of course you love your kids, we all do -- but every mom and dad deserves some me-time. Now that summer is over, leaving meals up to chance just won't cut it. And buying lunch on a daily basis just isn't an option. 

Now that kids are back in class, I'm starting to get tons of questions from clients on what to pack for lunch. Sometimes what seems like the most daunting task really needs to be simplified. And just taking some time to ask your kids what they want to eat can be a huge help! Especially if they're not eating much of what you pack to begin with.

Don't fret -- here are some quick-and-easy kids lunch ideas your littles will be excited about:

  • PB & Banana Sushi Bites + Yogurt + fresh veggie sticks - Your school peanut free? Opt for sunflower butter, almond butter, or even whipped cream cheese instead. Stick with yogurts that contain less than 10 grams of sugar per serving. And try keeping the yogurts in the freezer; by the time your child gets to lunch, the yogurt should be ready-to-eat! How to make PB & Banana Sushi Bites: 1 low-cal whole grain tortilla topped with 2 tablespoons buttery spread of choice and 1 medium banana (or your child's fave fruit); roll it up and cut into little sushi-bites!
  • Pizza Bagel: 1 mini whole wheat bagel (or bagel thin) + 1-2 tablespoons tomato sauce + 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese; pack each ingredient in their own separate baggie so they don't get soggy. Provide a plastic spoon so your kiddo can build their own pizza bagel! Feel free to include 4-5 turkey pepperonis to go on top. Don't forget to pack fresh veggie sticks and some fresh fruit on the side.
  • Turkey Roll-Ups with Hummus and Carrots: grab 2-3 slices of fresh deli turkey meat and roll them up with 1 slice swiss, provolone or muenster cheese. On the side serve 1/4 cup hummus with a baggie of baby carrots (and other sliced veggies) to dip in the hummus. Pack some fresh fruit for a sweet treat.
  • Ham and Cheese on Wheat plus a Treat: 2 slices light whole grain bread topped with 2-3 slices ham and 1 slice cheese of choice. Pack along your child's favorite snack-time treat in a ready-to-eat 100-calorie pack - think Oreos, Goldfish, or even Doritos. Don't forget some fresh fruit and veggies to fill their bellies!
  • Burrito Bowl: 1/4 cup brown rice + 1/4 cup black beans (drained) + 1/2 cup chopped grilled chicken + 1/4 cup guacamole + 1/4 cup reduced fat shredded mexican style cheese + 1-2 tablespoons salsa; top with diced tomato, corn kernels and chopped lettuce.
  • 2 hardboiled eggs + 2 slices cooked turkey bacon + 2 whole grain (frozen) waffles (Kodiak Cakes or Ezekiel brands) + 1 cup fresh mixed fruit