lunchbox_ideas

5 fun and nutritious lunchbox ideas

Think outside the lunchbox! Be more creative with your kids packed lunches and they’re sure to go down a treat.


Why not plan the week in advance so you’re not frazzled in the morning and ask the kids to pack their own lunchbox? You can stretch your child’s tastes at home but in their lunchbox choose things you know they love.

Getting started

  • Remember that mixing lots of different finger foods, from blueberries to little tomatoes, makes eating more of a treat for kids.
  • Combine a rainbow of colours to make lunch even more appealing – asparagus, red peppers and carrots, and fruit cocktail dessert with cherries, melon balls and tangerine sections.
  • Make sure there’s plenty of fruits and vegetables included for necessary vitamin-rich high-fibre.
  • Fruit and veg are also great sources of ‘good’ carbohydrates – ideal for growth generally, and to fuel your child’s brain power for afternoon school work.
  • Try to avoid ‘bad’ carbs like white bread as the sugar and starch will cause energy dips after lunch.
  • Cheese cut into sticks is calcium-rich and a useful protein alternative to bread and packaged meat.

5 great packed lunch ideas

1. Tacos
Try beans with lettuce, corn, tomatoes and grated cheese or chicken strips with avocado and shredded cabbage.

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2. Wraps
Try wholewheat pitta with hummous, cucumber and tabbouleh, lettuce-leaf pockets with tuna, tomato and olives inside, or roll-ups with shredded turkey, spinach and shredded Brussels sprouts.

3. Salads
Try mixed-vegetable crudités in endive boats with different dips or edamame salad with quinoa or rice, sweetcorn and sunflower seeds.

4. Brunch
Hard-boiled egg, baked sweet potato slices and green peas, cold frittata filled with broccoli florets and mixed veggies, or savoury wholewheat muffins with ham, cheese and courgette.

5. Kebabs
Try a mixture of cheese cubes with celery, olives, apples and grapes or mushrooms, cherry tomatoes and pineapple. You could replace the cheese with bite-sized cuts of roast chicken.

Savvy tip
Use cookie cutters to make star- and heart-shaped cucumber and courgette slices, carve radish roses and make faces with cherry-tomato eyes and carrot-strip smiles. Or tuck in a little message – a cute drawing, a message that you love them, or even a daily silly joke they can tell at the school lunch table.

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Yes I totally agree that lunch boxes can appear boring to children but if you use your imagination and use as many colourful foods as possible it will liven up the kids lunch boxes my two are always excited to open theirs as I try to vary the contents so they get a surprise everyday which they love. Shape cutters are a great idea to make food fun for kids.

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I was at my wits end when it came to my kids school dinners. They just did not enjoy them. Luckily they are great eaters so I recently purchased two bento boxes and did some research. They are now happy with rice shaped pandas with a selection of veg sticks. You should try it. Sushi rice is so ready available these days.

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NDKL007

NDKL007

Reported

I always involved my girls when making their lunches. They used to enjoy their lunches more when they felt THEY had made their lunches! :-D

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Joparr17

Reported

I have a very fussy eater in my daughter. She was ill when she was 3, suffered a temporary dairy intolerance and it has been a struggle to get her to try anything new ever since. She's 7 now. When she was in Playgroup I used to cut her sandwiches into different shapes everyday. Teddy's, stars, hearts. You name it we cut it. She loved the variety and it got her eating different things. Make kids lunch exciting and they will enjoy it more.

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