5 simple kid-friendly school lunch ideas

What's the point of packing a lunch if your kids won't eat it, right? If you've run into a rut and your children are coming home from school hungry, here are five quick and easy ways to make healthy, kid-friendly lunches they'll love.

5 simple kid-friendly school lunch ideas

1. Think outside the (sandwich) box

Although sandwiches are a lunchtime staple, they can also get very boring day after day. To add variety, consider trying some delicious alternatives to the everyday peanut butter and jam. Some delicious combinations you should try include:

  • Pesto
  • Goat cheese and fig jam
  • Peanut butter and banana
  • Mozzarella, basil and tomato sauce

2. Try a fun new snack

Edamame is fun to eat, convenient and a nutritional powerhouse that contains protein, folate, and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids.

  • They're great to eat right out of the pod by lightly sliding the edamame out of the shell.

If this treat is new to your child, pack lightly salted pre-shelled edamame for them to eat as finger food.

3. Prepare "ants on a log"

This is an old favourite, which you may know by another name. You can switch it up on different days to include a ton of healthy options.

The “log”can be anything that’s straight and sturdy, including:

  • Pretzels
  • Celery
  • Carrot sticks

The “ants” can be anything tiny and yummy, such as:

  • Raisins
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Chocolate chips
  • Mini marshmallows
  • Nuts
  • Sprinkles

Sticking "ants" on the "log"
So how do the “ants” stick firmly to the “log”? The binding material is the final element in this fun snack!

  • Peanut butter, honey, chocolate spread or hummus are obvious ideas, but use your imagination to create fun twists.

4. Create some "all-season snowmen"

Regardless of the time of year, it's easy to embrace Frosty’s image by creating fun-to-make and fun-to-eat edible snowmen.

How to do it

  • Use toothpicks to hold the elements of your snowman together.
  • Attach marshmallows, grapes, cherry tomatoes or any other round item to make a three-part snowman on the toothpick.
  • For eyes, use flax or sunflower seeds.
  • For a nose, use a carrot shaving.
  • For the mouth, use a pomegranate seed.
  • Use a dab of vanilla frosting to bind eyes, mouth and nose to the base.
  • Mix sweet and savoury to create a treat even the most finicky eater won’t be able to resist.

5. Drink the rainbow

Every lunch needs a beverage. When milk gets a bit boring and you want your children to avoid sugary drinks, there is a happy medium. What does this mean?

  • Pack a bottle of water and an envelope of flavoured-water additive.
  • Look for one that contains the full daily recommended value of Vitamin C.
  • Kids love dispensing the powder into their water, shaking it and creating a thirst-quenching concoction.
  • Some water-flavouring additives are also available in concentrate form. With a drop or two into a glass of cold water, you can change the whole experience. Popular flavours include lemonade and iced tea. Because these containers provide multiple servings, you may need to supervise how much your children add to water.

When looking for these additives, check for the presence of sugar as a sweetener.  Too much in a glass can be almost as bad as drinking a whole can of soda.

Packing a school lunch doesn't have to mean the same old boring sandwich week after week. By getting a little creative, you can fill your child's lunchbox with a different exciting treat for them to discover every day.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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