Elizabeth, here. I hope you had a chance to read Anna's recent post about the importance of eliminating diet talk from schools. And did you see our new resource to share with teachers and coaches? It makes it so easy to reach out and share your beliefs about food with anyone who works with your children.
Has everyone settled into the new school year? If you're anything like me, it's the time of year you get stuck in the lunch-making-ho-hums. I don’t love packing lunches and get tired of it pretty quickly! As a way to prevent the ho-hums and mix things up a bit, I thought I'd share a few more ideas for quick and easy lunches to add to the LUNCH LIST.
What's For Lunch?
Leftover Pizza, Clementines and Homemade Oatmeal Craisin Cookies
A teenager or older child would likely need at least two slices of pizza depending on the slice size. (These are actually quite small. I had to cut this piece of pizza in two to fit it in the container). Or add a Greek yogurt or some trail mix to lunch if there’s only one slice per older child. For younger children, make a hole in the top of the clementines to make it easy for littler hands to peel them, or just peel them before putting them in the lunchbox.
I love these Sistema lunch cubes as I mentioned here a few weeks ago. They have plenty of room for a full lunch. And the fact that the container closes between sections means less likelyhood the pizza or cookies will taste like clementines and vice versa.
My youngest loves leftover pizza for lunch! This makes me happy because it’s so easy and it really satisfies her.
Trader Joe’s Falafel, Tzatziki, Naan, Cucumbers, Grapes and yogurt
This is not a lunch my own children will eat--yet, at least. These Trader Joe’s Falafel are pretty darn good. Sometimes they can be a tiny bit dry for my taste, but this is where all the hummus and tzatziki come in! I either put them on mixed greens and cucumbers with tzatziki (cucumber yogurt dip), hummus and pita chips, or have them on pita (or the Trader Joe’s Naan works well, too) with cucumber and tzatziki. The amounts pictured here are for a teen or even an older child. For a younger child, I’d offer a smaller piece of pita (or Naan) and maybe 2 Falafel depending on the child’s appetite.
Add a Brown Cow whole milk yogurt for dessert and you're all set.
Leftover Soup, Apples with Dressing, Annie's Snack Mix and Cheese Slices
A small 10 oz Thermos is pictured here filled with leftover Sausage, White Bean and Kale Soup (though not much kale left here it appears!). This meal would be great for an elementary aged child. For an older child, I’d recommend using a 16 oz Thermos and add a salad and more crackers or some bread.
To heat the Thermos, fill it with hot water (I heat water in my electric water kettle, but hot tap water or water heated in the microwave in a microwave-safe container works, too), place the lid on and let it sit for 10 minutes or so while you’re putting lunch together (or drinking coffee!).
PB & J on Cinnamon Raisin Bread with Fruit and Potato Chips
Here’s a different take on PB and J (or Sunbutter and J). Try making the sandwich on cinnamon raisin bread, or just cinnamon bread if your child doesn’t like raisins. The slices of bread are on the small side, so for an older child you might consider adding a yogurt to the lunch or another half or whole sandwich.
I want to try this next time with apple butter and peanut butter. That combo sounds great to me for a cool fall day.
When I was the baker at a restaurant in Columbus, OH in the 90’s, we made lunch for a band who had a stopover in town (I want to say it was for Harry Connick Jr., but I can’t remember for sure). One of the sandwiches the band requested was cinnamon swirl bread with cashew butter and fresh raspberries. SO TASTY! I still remember how good that sandwich tasted. The bread pictured here is Pepperidge Farm. I clearly didn’t make the bread or the nut butter this time! Though that’s the kind of weekend activity I LOVE!
What are you doing this weekend? I might just make homemade cinnamon swirl bread!