Summer is almost over and school will be in session again soon. And while I have mixed emotions about this – yay! for some alone time during the day – nay! for being alone all day! I’m happy to get back to a more schedule routine for the sake of my sanity, but I’ll miss the lazy days of summer for sure.
For me, the worst part about back to school besides having to buy all those annoying school supplies, is packing lunches every. single. damn. day. Ugh! I hate it. Especially since my daughter gets what I like to call “school lunch fatigue.” This is when I pack the same snack and or lunch more than 2 days in a row. It’s a pretty serious affliction. Symptoms include whining about what was in her lunch, complaining that her lunch was boring, stories of the glorious and delicious lunches her friends have and uneaten lunches being brought back home.
So I decided I needed to scour the internet for interesting, tasty, and easy to pack lunches so my daughter doesn’t, you know, like, totally die from the boring lunches I make her.
Oh and I promise I will only share realistic lunch ideas. I mean, seriously, how many kids do you know who are wanting caprese kabobs? Not my kiddo that’s for sure! Not only would she not eat that, I’m looking for easy lunch ideas. i.e. grab some stuff and throw it in the lunch box.
This post may contain some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.1.
1. Fruit and Cheese platter – Apple slices and cubes of cheese are yummy and delicious! Add some pita chips or bagel chips for some crunchy texture. Bonus tip: To keep the apple slices from turning brown, slice your apple (Be sure to keep the core) and then reassemble it and place a rubber band around it.
2. DIY Lunchables – These are so fun and you can put anything in them! Try some trailmix, wraps, cubes of cheese, or anything else you can come up with. And you can get some really inexpensive containers that have compartments in them so they are super easy and fast to pack. Like these ones from Amazon:
3. Salad in a Pocket – My daughter loves when I do this. They are so simple add your favorite lettuce and veggies and your done! I told you these would be easy ideas. You can find these in the bread isle and sometimes they are called pita pockets. Like these ones:
And if your child likes some salad dressing you can find these cute little salad dressing containers:
4. Cheese Quesadillas – Ok, I admit these take a little bit of planning ahead of time. But you can make a few up at a time and refrigerate them and then they are ready to go. I just take a flour tortilla, spray some pam in my skillet and warm the tortilla until it is browned. Add your favorite cheese – we like cheddar – and then fold in half and continue warming until cheese in melted. Remove and cut into triangles. Tada! Your done! And it doesn’t take much preparation time.
5. The Whatever Lunch – This is something my daughter created and while it isn’t a “traditional” lunch she really likes it because it provides the variety she craves. I take a bottle of water, her favorite fruit of the moment (last year it was kiwi), 1 pack of fruit snacks, a serving of pretzels, and a cheese stick. Sometimes I give her one of those Sargento Balanced Breaks instead of the cheese stick. She really likes those. You can mix and match items to suit your child’s taste but while it isn’t a ton of calories she feels like she’s getting a ton of food!
6. The Tried and True Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich – While this isn’t always the most exciting lunch it is good in a pinch. Plus you can make some ahead, pop them in the freezer and they will be ready to throw in the lunch box whenever you need them. They will thaw before your child eats! It’s genius! Of course, if you are like me and a bit on the lazy side when it comes to lunches you can always buy Smucker’s Uncrustables Frozen Peanut Butter and Jelly Sanwiches. Plus I don’t have to cut the crust of the bread!
7. Hard Boiled Eggs – Now this one doesn’t work for us because my daughter refuses to eat eggs! But, it can be a really super easy and healthy alternative for your lunches. Prepare the eggs at the beginning of the week. Peel them and put in a ziploc bag and they are ready to grab and go.
8. Cheese Stick Wraps – Oh my gosh you all! These are so easy. 1. get a cheese stick. 2. wrap your favorite lunch meat around it. 3. wrap that in a mini flour tortilla. That’s it. Super easy but yummy and fun!
9. Peanut Butter – Everything tastes better when it is dipped in peanut butter! So send your kiddo off with a small container of peanut butter and then put different items to dip into it. Pretzels, celery, pita chips, apples, bananas, tortilla chips, the list goes on! And again, a nod to the lazy lunch packers like myself, you can buy single serve on-the-go peanut butter packages from Jif. No messy spoons or knives to clean up. I’m tellin’ ya peeps it’s the simple things in life that make me happy.
10. Nutella – Ah lovely Nutella! It’s perfect for lunches and so versatile. My daughter loves it in a sandwich. But you can put it on tortillas, send it a container so they can dip stuff in it, or slap it on some bread. Not only is it yummy it’s healthy too! And just like the peanut butter to-go- packages above, Nutella comes in single serve containers as well.
Ok, I’m exhausted just thinking about making all those lunches in a few weeks. What are your favorite go to lunches? Comment below!
Until Next Time,