Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Tuesday's Tips for Busy Families

My kids' daycare does not provide lunch for my kids, so I have to pack it for them.  Although it takes some planning, this is actually a good thing.  When I see what is available to my third-grade students when they buy lunch, I cringe.  (Seriously, sometimes mozzarella sticks are the main lunch!)

My kids' daycare is also a peanut-free zone, so I can't fall back on the standard PB & J, which is a favorite in our house.  That means I've had to get a bit creative with their lunches.  I always pack sides like fruit, yogurt or applesauce, and something crunchy (like carrots, Pirate's Booty, veggie chips, or pretzel sticks).  Here are some of my go-to entrees.

Most days, my kids are happy with organic Z-bars.  These are the kid-version of Clif bars.  Honey Graham is their favorite flavor.  I get mine at Trader Joe's.
They also like:

Ham/turkey and cheese in a whole wheat pita

Hummus and sliced cucumber on whole wheat bread

Cheese slices and crackers

Egg salad and crackers

A mini bagel with cream cheese

Mini muffins (you can make these ahead of time and freeze them)

cheese quesadillas (again, these can be made the night before and refrigerate them)

Of course, I'm always looking for good ideas.  What's your favorite go-to entree for a packed lunch?


  1. Oh, my....they offer lunch at my son's preschool, but of course he does not like any of it. Maybe he will like the Z bars! I also cannot believe what they offer for lunch at my school, but it is better than it used to be...

    One thing we do: frozen big pretzels. Charlie loves them. You can pack them frozen and they will be defrosted by lunchtime.

  2. My kids are all pretty good eaters. My school-aged kids usually take a sandwich, or a yogurt, or cottage cheese with fruit mixed in.
    I make home-made lunchables for the kids too~lunchmeat, cheese stick and crackers. They love it!


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