We are back from a wonderful trip to Cincinnati where we visited Grandma and Grandpa. The weather was perfect. Grandma and Grandpa’s house was super restful. They LOVED having the kids over. It was really a great way to wrap up all of the summer fun. Now it is time to start getting ready to send our first-born off to Kindergarten. Oh my! And although I am in complete denial, I know I have got to get my head in gear and do some planning.
I had grandiose plans to have a week this summer devoted to coming up with and trying out lunchbox ideas for Tabitha who will be starting Kindergarten in less than 2 weeks (that is all I am going to mention about Kindergarten for fear that I might turn into a sobbing mess). I have mentioned before that Tabitha would eat peanut butter sandwiches every day if I’d let her. She LOVES peanut butter. And this is a very easy thing to pack. Often this is exactly what I pack if we will be eating lunch away from home. But I am not going to pack her PB sandwiches every single day. The girl needs some variety.
Tabitha is a tricky one. She is very picky about what she considers lunch and she doesn’t like a lot of your typical lunch ideas. So we have been talking, even looking at Pinterest together, to come up with some ideas. I thought it would be fun to have a week this summer where we tried out some of those ideas and even packed them up in her lunchbox to see how she liked them.
Well summer got away from me, and my brilliant plan never came to be. I couldn’t find a week where we had enough time to plan ahead and enough money in the grocery budget to buy some things simply to play around with some ideas. Nonetheless, I have been able to try out some things here and there that she agrees would make good lunches.
I have been compiling a list all summer and this is some of the ideas we have come up with:
PBC Baked Oatmeal - I would probably omit the chocolate chips. Or another baked oatmeal recipe.
Mini chocolate almond flour pancakes - plain, with nut/seed butter, or with coconut butter and fruit sauce
Apple cider pancakes - plain
Chocolate chocolate muffins or another nutrient packed muffin
Pumpkin scones - I make them without the frosting and cranberries, sometimes I add a few chocolate chips or dried fruit on top
Carrot cake oatmeal cookies (will post recipe sometime)
Other Miscellaneous Ideas:
nuts, seeds, and dried fruit
mini chicken sausages (Fresh & Easy has some chicken apple sausages that are nitrate free)
almond flour, coconut flour or whole-grain baked goods such as muffins, scones, etc
Sweet Potato Cookies
coconut-lime chicken nuggets (these are the neatest homemade nuggets I have made and they are great cold) with this sugar-free bbq sauce
PB banana wraps
salads (I’d like to put some chicken in the salad but I am not sure she will go for that)
brown rice pasta with butter (earth balance, soy free) or olive oil, nutritional yeast and salt or other sauce
veggies such as bell peppers and carrots (she prefers them plain these days)
pita with roasted red pepper hummus, turkey, and spinach (she ate this once, but this is a stretch for her)
rolled turkey (she doesn’t like turkey sandwiches but sometimes she will eat it plain)
Tabitha’s Favorite Chicken
Italian Sausage and Spinach Soup
mashed sweet potato (will post our recipe next time I make it)
smoothies and shakes
yogurt (with granola, berries, or fruit sauce)
Other great Healthy Lunchbox Ideas and resources:
Tessa the Domestic Diva’s GF Lunchbox Series
100 Days of Real Food’s School Lunch Roundup
Cook It Allergy-Free’s 50+ Allergy-Friendly Lunchbox Ideas
$5 Dinners’ Back to School Lunch Week Recap
Healthy Child’s How to Make a Healthy School Lunch
And Love It Too’s Healthy Lunchbox Series
I realize a lot of these ideas are homemade goodies and my head is spinning trying to figure out how I am going to make it all happen. It will take some planning and prepping ahead, but it’s important to me so I will do my best. I am actually pretty excited about it.
Do you have any fun lunchbox ideas or tips?