My Monkey was very excited about taking her lunches, wanting sandwiches everyday. I told her and told her that she would get sick of them, but what do I know! Last year, she got sick of sandwiches pretty quickly. Although I give her kudos for waiting so long to admit it! We seem to have an issue with being wrong! It could be due to the fact that she is a teenager!
In order to avoid hearing her whining and complaining, I decided to be pro-active and get creative this year! Hear are some of the ideas I’ve found and come up with! More often than not, I don’t have what I need to actually follow the recipes, so I adjust and make them up as I go! Here are the ones I have tried or am planning to try! I do my best to throw in as much nutrition as possible!
- Shredded chicken, black beans, fresh spinach, and Picante sauce
- Refried beans, ground meat, rice, and salsa
- Lunch meat, cheese, mayo
- Seasoned whole chicken, spinache, and cheese
Lunch Meat Pinwheels (I forgot to take the picture, but they turned out great!)
- lay out 1 piece of bread and roll flat with a rolling pin or glass
- smear on light layer of choice sauce (mayo, mustard, BBQ, ketchup, etc)
- layer choice of lunch meat
- top with cheese
- roll up into a ‘wheel’
- use toothpicks to make it stay
- refridgerate over night
- the next morning, simply take out the toothpicks and cut into bite size pieces, place in baggie!
PBJ Pinwheels- lightly layer peanut butter and jelly, then follow the previous directions to finish!
Salads: Mix tomatoes, dressing, boiled eggs together in a seperate container then the lettuce will stay fresh! Be sure to use a container big enough that they can mix it together!
Additional toppings (and nutrients!):
Kidney or black beans Corn Nuts Sunflower Seeds
Cold Soups (i.e. cucumber or melon soup)
Pickles Pretzels Marshmallows
Muffins Cookies Pudding
Fruit Cups Jello Flavored Crackers
Tips & Suggestions for Lunch Boxes:
- if serving something that could get sticky, moisten a wash rag and put it in a seperate baggie
- To keep mini muffins or mini cupcakes soft, freeze them in the baggie the night before. By the time lunchtime comes around, they will be thawed AND they’ll keep the other food cool!
- Pickles go great in boxes, just place in baggie and remember #1!!!
- Don’t use ‘moist’ condiments, such as tomatoes or pickles on the sandwiches or wraps, as they will make everything soggy. Just put them in a seperate bag if desired!
- You can easily prepare the lunch box the night before, then stick it in the fridge, it will stay cold (duh!) and the bag will stay colder til at least lunch!
- If your Monkey likes mayo, you can easily add spices to it to it to add a little flare. My Monkey loves Cajun spices added, you can use taco spices, or whatever you like!
- Sneak in nutrients by using fresh spinache (most kids won’t associate the ‘icky’ spinache with the fresh as they look so differently!) or adding minced carrots and celery. More often than not, they either won’t notice or taste the difference!
- Add in a piece of gum or mint if sending something with onions or tuna. That way you won’t hear the ‘bad breathe’ complaints from the older Monkeys!
If you have any tips or easy school lunch ideas, I’d love to hear them!!! Can only re-cycle these recipes so many times before the Monkey is tired of them!!! We’ve also got some great freeze ahead breakfasts you can check out! Enjoy!
Originally posted 2011-08-21 17:50:00.