It’s Back-to-School season!
The Back-to-School season is officially upon us! Maybe you’re feeling that twinge of stress starting to rise at the thought of having to make lunches for your kids to take to school.
“What am I going to make?”
“How am I going to cope making so many lunches???”
I got you!
Here are a few tips to help make your Back-to-School lunches easier!
Back-to-School Lunch Tips
- Make One More
This is the easiest way to both meal prep and be super efficient with your time. Imagine you’ve walked into the kitchen to make your kid a sandwich for lunch. You’ve taken out all the ingredients; the bread, mayo, cheese, turkey etc. You make a sandwich. Since all the ingredients are still out, why not make one more sandwich?
This Make One More strategy can save you time and you can feel at ease because you don’t have to make another lunch tomorrow.
This strategy can even be applied to dinner recipes. Instead of making one batch of a recipe, you could make two. And if you make more than you think you’ll be able to eat in 3-4 days, you could always freeze it for a meal in a few weeks.
Here’s some recipes that you could use to implement the Make One More strategy:
DIY Pizza Lunchables: Make a couple of these homemade pizza lunchables and keep in the fridge for grab-and-go school lunches.
Snack Lunch Box: Inspired by a fruit and cheese board, take those same ingredients and pack them into an easy school lunch. The bonus of M&M’s for the first day of school is an extra special treat!
2. Let the Store Help You
The amazing thing about the world we live in is that there are so many convenient foods to make life easier. The key is to pick whole food sources, or minimally refined foods, to get the most nutrition as you can.
Knowing this, use your local grocery store or online delivery service to find some ready made items that will make healthy lunches easier. Here’s a few examples:
- Pre-washed/pre-chopped fruits and veggies: some of my favorites are baby carrots, sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes, chopped melon, apple slices etc.
- Pre-cooked proteins e.g. chicken, turkey, beef, hardboiled eggs etc.
- Par-boiled grains e.g. rice, quinoa
You can use any, or all, of these convenient items to help you pull together a super quick school lunch, like a Mini Protein Box (like the one you can get from Starbucks) or a Snack Lunch.
3. Get Your Kids to Help!
So often we think that we, as parents, need to do everything for our kids. And while that is lovely and works most of the time, if you’re truly stressed out about making back-to-school lunches, ask your kids to help!
When kids are involved in choosing what they want for lunch, this is what happens:
- They feel more ownership over the meal
- They will be more inclined to eat more of their meal and/or try new ingredients
- It takes the pressure off of you!
When asking your kids to help make their lunches, keep the selection minimal i.e. try to have 2-3 options only so the decision can be made more quickly.
Also, allow extra time for the kids to pick and pack their lunch, preferably the night before. This will help to prevent rushing during the morning of school.
You could also invest in a few lunchboxes (our faves are the YumBoxes) so that a couple of lunches can be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge.
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If you and your kids don’t have the ability to put together a full lunch, meal prepping some key ingredients that can be put into a lunchbox at a later time, can still help save considerable time.
As always, encourage and commend your kids for their help! Teaching your young kids how to put together a healthy and delicious lunch is a skill that will benefit your children for years to come.
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