Gigantic post warning! I’ve been sharing the pics of our healthy school lunch ideas on my Instagram (are you following me there yet? Well do it now so you can see these in real time!) and I have had so many people tell me that they love them, so I have decided to share on my blog, too! My daughter is in first grade this year, and for a mom with a peanut allergic little peanut, this was truly frightening! But we’ve been having a grand time coming up with lunch ideas, and I’m proud of how much of the thinking and work is actually coming right from my first grader! This first post is massive because I’ve been saving up since school started. The next one will be much smaller!
I get a lot of my ideas from the 100 Days of Real Food blog, and now I’m starting to get ideas from their book. If you haven’t bought a copy of this book yet, you should! The school lunch section alone is very worth it. When I don’t use one of their ideas, I also use leftovers from dinner, or ask her what she wants.
Also, for the lunches that are hot, we bought this nifty thermos and have been loving it! I have been warming up her soup (or whatever else she wants to take hot) in the morning and putting it in the thermos, and it’s still warm at lunch. I love that I can still send a warm lunch on cold days!
First up, taco soup (sorry, the recipe for this is in an old cookbook, I don’t have a link to give you), organic corn chips, mango, cucumber, and SunButter fudge. You’ll see that I don’t often do treats, but this day she got both the chips and the fudge, lucky girl!
Pasta salad (we like brown rice pasta best out of all the whole grain pastas) with cucumber, chickpeas, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt, pepper, and a touch of granulated garlic. Watermelon chunks on the side.
I have decided that Mondays are sandwich days, they are just so easy! This day I used leftover pork for the meat on a good whole grain bread. Because she is also allergic to eggs we can’t do mayo, so I just butter each side of the bread. She also had grape tomatoes and grapes, and the lucky duck also got to take a leftover cupcake from her sister’s birthday party.
Veggie corn chowder (recipe here, from the 100 Days of Real Food Cookbook), even more grape tomatoes, and leftover whole wheat quick bread. I have started taking the leftovers whenever we have soup and freezing it in portions that fit her thermos. The night before, I just move it to the fridge, and then by morning it’s thawed enough to warm up and pack up. It makes it super easy to take homemade soup, even on busy mornings!
French onion soup (I used Tyler Florence’s recipe, which is AMAZING! Yum), whole wheat French bread that I had melted cheese on to float in the soup, and salad.
Cold grilled cheese sandwich on a high quality, whole grain bread. Apple slices, carrots, and nectarine on the side. Yes, she likes her grilled cheese cold, this was a special request, and the little bit that didn’t get eaten at school turned into her after school snack. Crazy girl!
Pizza “lunchable.” I talk about how I do this one here. Apple slices on the side. Not a bit of this one came home!
This was leftover pasta with marinara sauce from the night before, salad on the side.
Phew! And that catches us up, at least through the end of last week! Do you have any questions for me on how we prepare our lunches? Or do you have any great suggestions to help make packing healthy school lunches easier?
Here are links to some of our favorite school lunch supplies so far:
This post has been linked to the In and Out of the Kitchen Link Party, check out the other great posted linked up right here.