Food

Lunch ideas for kids

I’m stumped. You got any?

I have made lunches for my kids for four years total now. I hate it. I hate it so much. When The Artist went to preschool and started eating at school, IT WAS AMAZING. I suddenly didn’t have to meal prep! It was so lovely. Of course, then I was nursing and packing baby food and bottles for The Engineer, so…wasn’t quite the break I was expecting.

The Artist started kindergarten this fall, and I was pumped that her lunch is F-R-E-E. Celebrate!!!! Not only do I not have to pack a lunch for her, but I also don’t have to pay for it either. Woo hoo!! Go, public school! Can I get an amen? Apparently some very loving moms pack their kids lunch, though, because the other day she asked me if I would pack her a lunch. Haha, NO. Girl, you eating that cafeteria food just like I did.

The Engineer, though, still has to have a packed lunch, and, guys, I just don’t know. I’m running out of ideas. I love feeding the kids PBJs because both my dainty girls can down two of them at a sitting (seriously), and it fills them up with protein and carbs. However, I can’t send any peanut products to school due to allergies. So that option is out.

But, in case you’re wondering what does go into The Engineer’s lunch box, here are some ideas, and PLEASE SHARE SOME WITH ME!!!

1) Hummus and (whatever your kid eats): My kid loves dip. Anything she can dip, she loves. It’s actually a problem when we visit Chick-fil-a because she won’t eat the chicken – just the dips. She’s eaten tartar sauce, ketchup, and ranch dressing all on its own. She just loves the idea of dipping. And turns out – she can dip with hummus. I generally pack some pita chips or carrots with it, though, to be honest, the chips or carrots are just used as a pseudo-fork. But that’s okay – the hummus was the main star anyway!

2) Pseudo-yogurt parfait: I actually haven’t tried this yet, but I plan to. The Artist and I love yogurt parfaits (yogurt + honey + fruit + granola), but The Engineer is a bit suspicious of the granola. So I substitute Cheerios for hers, and she thinks it’s the best thing ever. So I’m planning to pack some yogurt, fruit, and Cheerios in her lunch and see how she likes that.

3) Cheese quesadilla. She has no problem eating this cold, and, if she’s lucky, I’ll throw in some salsa, too.

Y’all, that’s about it. I’ve also had parents tell me they’ve put chicken nuggets in a thermos or put pasta salad in the lunch box, but I’ve tried both and The Engineer didn’t eat it last year. Maybe I’ll try them again this year, though.

However, if there was just a way she could eat spinach popsicles at school (and in under 30 min – she savors them, ha!!), she’d think lunch was just about perfect.

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