If you’re like me, you may find yourself in a school lunch packing rut each year after only a few weeks of school. My daughter can only eat so many peanut butter and jelly sandwiches! And, as every parent knows, you never want so see any of this stuff make the return trip home!
So, to help prevent this I decided to come up with some new ideas for healthy, fun and easy school lunches. Here are some tips I plan on incorporating:
- Make ahead: foods such as healthy muffins are easy to whip up ahead of time and keep a batch frozen until ready to use. There’s a plethora of great recipes available online, these apple oatmeal muffins and these egg veggie muffins look great.
- Divide and conquer: a plastic tray with divided compartments makes it easier to pack leftovers and other potentially messy foods and rids you of a surplus of plastic baggies.
- Dinner for lunch: whole wheat pocket pitas and wraps are another great way to serve leftovers and create a new meal.
- A helping hand: studies have shown that kids are more likely to eat food that they help prepare, the egg veggie muffin recipe above looks perfect for this.
- Time saver: consider pre-portioning items for the week ahead of time and keeping them in a small bin in your refrigerator. A separate bin for non-refrigerated food works as well and making and freezing a weeks worth of sandwiches or any other food all at once is also a great time saver.
- Dip it: my daughter, like most kids, loves to dip stuff. So I’m planing on packing a low fat dip or hummus with veggies and fresh fruit on the side.
These kabobs are such cute idea. Sure, they would take a little extra time but I’m betting kids are much more likely to eat this, instead of if these items were separate based on presentation alone! To save time you could make a few days worth of these at once.
A few additional food ideas: sliced kiwi, sliced cucumbers smeared w/ laughing cow spreadable cheese (coupon deal below), fresh veggies w/ hummus or dip, cherry tomatoes, boiled egg.
Providing these healthy school lunches can get expensive. Below are some great deals on school snack and lunch foods you can currently find at Price Chopper. Most of these deals are valid thru 9/20 so you have plenty of time to get in on these deals:
Applegate Natural & Organic Roasted Turkey Breast 7 oz. – $3.99
= $2.49 (reg $4.99)
Peanut Butter & Co. Natural Peanut Butter – $2.99 thru 9/20
$1/1 manu ecoupon
$1 off any 16oz Jar of Peanut Butter and Co Brand Peanut Butter
= $1.99 (regularly $4.49!)
Nutella 14 oz. – $2.99 thru 9/20
$1/1 from 8/17 SS
$1/1 manu ecoupon
Smucker’s Natural Fruit Spread 19 oz. – $3.29 (reg price)
$0.75 off any Smucker’s Natural Fruit Spread
Welch’s Squeeze Grape Jelly 22 oz. – $2 thru 9/20
$1/2 from 7/27 RP #2
= $1.50 each
2 GoGo Squeeze Applesauce 4 packs at $2 thru 11/1
Mott’s Applesauce 6 pack or Jar – $2 thru 9/20
$1.00 off TWO (2) Mott’s 6-pk Applesauce cups
= $1.50 each
Laughing Cow Cheese Wedges 6 ct. – $2.99
= $1.99 (reg $3.49)
(school lunch idea: serve on cucumbers)
Babybel Cheese 6 ct. – $4.29 thru 9/20
$1.00 off any ONE (1) Mini Babybel Cheese product
Frigo Cheesehead 12 ct. Cheese Sticks – $3.99 thru 9/20
$0.55 off any one Frigo Cheese Heads snack cheese
= only $2.89
Kashi Granola Bars – $3.49
$0.75/1 from 9/7 RP #2
Clif Z Kids Organic Bars 6 ct. – $3 thru 9/20
$1/2 Target competitor coupon
= $2.50 each (reg $3.99)
Annies Snacks 7.5 oz. – $3.29 thru 9/27
Apple & Eve Juice Boxes 8 ct. – $2.50 thru 9/20
$1.50/2 from 8/17 SS or 7/27 SS
= as low as $1.75 each
Wise Chips Grab & Snack Variety Pack 24 ct. – $5.99 thru 9/20
$1 off any One Size Variety pack of Wise Snacks
= $4.99 (reg $7.99)
Bic Cristal Round Stic Pens 10 pack – $1
$1 off ANY BIC Stationary Product (sign up)
What are some out of the “lunchbox” items you pack for your kid’s school lunch? Tell us by logging in and commenting below.