Easy Lunch Box Ideas For Kids And Adults


If you are looking for some easy lunch box recipes for kids and adults, this is a great place to start.
Lunch boxes are an easy way to get your kids to eat more healthy by making them feel like they’re eating differently. But that doesn’t mean they have to be boring or repetitive. Here’s some easy lunch box ideas for kids and adults.

Preparing lunch for kids and adults can be a very difficult task. Preparation of food for each month will become a headache for most of the people preparing for their colleagues or family members’ lunch. There are a lot of things to be taken care of while preparing lunch. Various recipes have been written and published but most of them are complicated.

Easy Lunch Box Ideas For Kids And Adults

Knowing what to pack in your child’s lunch box isn’t always easy. From trying to balance between food that’s healthy and food that they’ll actually want to eat can be a downright pain! This can especially hard when it comes to sticking to lunches made up of real food and not just reaching for some of the quick fixes at the grocery store.

Why It’s Worth The Effort

Obviously, your child is always worth the effort, but it’s perfectly okay to admit that sometimes a hectic schedule makes it hard to prepare real foods for their lunches five times a week. Before you give into your crazy schedule or your child’s pleading for cheese and cracker snack packs like “all the other kids get,” think about these facts:

-According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 1 in every 3 children in America is overweight or obese.

-Contrary to popular belief, fast food isn’t the main cause of child obesity, according to a recent study. Turns out that the bigger issue is what their parents and caregivers are feeding them, which often includes very little fruits and veggies and loads of processed foods and sugar-filled beverages.

-Obese kids have a higher risk of several health issues such as bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and heart disease. They also have a higher risk of psychological problems like low self-esteem.

-A National Institutes of Health (NIH) panel concluded long ago that food additives and certain foods affect some children with behavioral issues, including ADHD.

Real Food Lunches They’ll Love

It won’t be easy to get your child to eat a lunch box full of whole grains, fruits, and veggies when little Suzy is sitting on one side with her cupcake treat and little Jared on the other eating a pizza pocket. The key to making it work is to create healthy alternatives that taste great and, since kids are visual creatures; look good too.

Since sandwiches are a lunch box staple, be sure to include them even if only a couple times a week. Make your own bread, or buy whole grain breads that list grains as the first ingredient on the label. Pack them with protein-filled natural nut butters and sweeten them up with slices of banana. Honey is also a nice alternative to highly processed jams and spreads. If getting them to eat sandwiches takes a little more coaxing, then add some whimsy by cutting the bread into a fun shape. It’s all in the details with some kids!

Fruits and vegetables can be approached much the same way, by cutting and arranging them into fun shapes. It may seem a little frivolous, but investing a few bucks into spiral slicer or taking a few extra minutes to spiral cucumbers and other veggies can make all the difference in the world! Baking veggies into “chips” is also a sure-fire way to get a child to eat their veggies without any moaning.

And, give them the special fast food treats they want without all the fat and additives. Ground turkey and chicken made into patties and placed in a whole grain bun is a great alternative to the traditional hamburger and making your own whole grain pizza dough and letting them add their own healthy toppings is a fun way to give them a healthy version of a classic kid favorite.

Other friendly real food ideas are:

  • homemade muffins
  • homemade granola bars
  • oatmeal animal crackers
  • fruit smoothies
  • sweet potato fries (baked, of course!)

First Impressions Matter To Kids

The way you pack their lunch is also important. It may seem silly since most of us could care less what our lunch is packaged in when break time rolls around and we’re hungry. To a kid, the way the food is packaged matters, especially when they’re surrounded by other kids drinking out of bottles with straws and slurping snacks out of squishy tubes and containers! Look for cool containers to make the “real food” look like “fun kid food”. Snack trays with different compartments like bento boxes are great, as are bright bottles, and yes, the Little Green Pouch too. Its kid and slurp-friendly design is ingenious, along with being reusable and compact, of course. Basically, when it comes to packing a lunch that appeals to kids: If you can rearrange it, squish it, or slurp it; they’ll love it!

Getting your kids to eat real food at school doesn’t have to be a struggle. Put your kid cap on and think like your 6-year-old self when planning and preparing their lunches and snacks. And, don’t forget to ask for their input and include them in the process. You’d be surprised at how excited they get about lunch when they have some say.

Easy Make-Ahead Lunch-Box Recipes

I’ve been working on prepping meals/ingredients/lunches/stuff for the freezer more and more lately and it has been such an awesome thing to have done and ready to use! I even had the chance to teach a meal planning/food prep class to over 30 women this past month and I loved it. I’m getting into a great groove and having more food conveniently ready in the fridge is a game changer.

What is it about the spring that is a total zoo? We have everything from the dentist and t-ball practice to the spring dance recital and baseball going on. Having healthy food ready to go in the fridge means that I’m making good choices, even on the craziest of days.

I do pretty well about planning dinner, but it’s a whole lot harder to plan lunch. I thought I’d take a little time to prep some awesome lunches and share them with you today. These are simple, wholesome lunch-box ideas for adults. Kids could enjoy them too but I had adults in mind when I created them. These are perfect  adult lunch box ideas to enjoy on the go, at work, or even at the park with the kids. Real food never looked so good.

What’s The Key To a Great Lunch On The Go?

I like to make sure my grownup lunchboxes all use simple, real food that can be prepped ahead of time and stored in the fridge. This makes it easy to grab and go, and not be stuck having to choose fast food or something you don’t really want to eat (or worse, not eat at all!).

You must get some lunchboxes you love! These Easy Lunch Boxe

 are super great for my kids and myself alike. It helps you portion everything out easily, plus it makes clean up and transporting simple.

How Can You Make Meal Prep Easier?

I like to prep lunches while I’m making dinner and already have out my knife and cutting board. You can also do a big meal prep session, or you can prep a little as you go. Whatever is easiest for you!

Tips and Tricks for Making Adult Lunch Boxes:

  • The key to great lunches are keeping them simple, using real food, and making things that can be prepped ahead of time and stored in the fridge. All of these lunches hit all three of those things.
  • Get some lunch boxes you love! I bought a set of Easy Lunch Boxes when my oldest went to kindergarten so that she could start packing her lunch and we still use and love them all of the time. When I’m packing my school kids’ lunches, I’ll often just make three more lunches for the little boys at home. They love eating out of these cute boxes and I love that the work is done. I’ve now bought a few more sets of these and we still love them.
  • I like to prep lunches while I’m making dinner and already have out my knife and cutting board. You can set out to do a big meal prep session or you can prep a little as you go, it’s up to you.
  • Have you started making no bake oatmeal bites for your lunches yet? We are OBSESSED with these little balls of goodness.

Here are the details on the adult lunch box ideas!

Possible Lunch Box Combos:

8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Easy Pasta Salad (leftover pasta + chopped zucchini/red onion/tomato/bell peppers/ham + salad dressing (roasted garlic, creamy Italian, and classic vinaigrette are awesome in this)
  • Cashews + dark chocolate chips
  • Kiwi + blueberries
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Hummus
  • Celery/carrots/bell peppers/broccoli
  • Crackers
  • Dried fruit (mango/pineapple/blueberries/apricots) + dark chocolate
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Butternut Squash and Red Lentil Curry + brown rice (my favorite leftovers!)
  • Dark chocolate
  • Broccoli/radishes/tomatoes
  • Red and green grapes
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Salami + provolone
  • Crackers
  • Radishes/cucumber/carrots/black olives
  • Raspberries
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Apple and Peanut Butter “Sandwiches”
  • Blueberries
  • Cashews + almonds + pecans + dark chocolate chips
  • Boiled eggs
  • Carrots + celery
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Egg Salad
  • Crackers
  • Black olives/celery/carrots/broccoli/radishes/bell peppers
  • Dried blueberries/apricots/pineapple + dark chocolate + almonds
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Cooked Quinoa + Roasted Veggies + Chicken Breast (great with optional dressing on top, and I love the roasted garlic on this)
  • Red and green grapes
  • Pecans + almonds + dates + dark chocolate chips
8 awesome adult lunch box ideas that go way beyond the typical sandwich!
  • Green Salad (all the veggies + optional ham/cheese/boiled egg). If I’m going to eat it within an hour or two, I’ll add the dressing before I leave the house. I’ll bring the dressing in a separate container if I’m not going to eat it for a few hours. Don’t dress the day you make it; it gets soggy fast.
  • Crackers
  • Blueberries + raspberries
  • Dark chocolate
Lunch Box Ideas - Burrito Bowl Lunch Box

Burrito Bowl Lunch Box

  • Rice + black beans + roasted sweet potatoes + fresh salsa
  • Almonds + chocolate chips
  • Grapes

Long live the burrito bowl! You can really play with this idea to fit your needs and your child’s preferences. I cook up the rice and roast my sweet potatoes on my meal prep day and then just open a can of black beans as needed. I like to mix in a little salt, cumin, and chili powder with the black beans so that they taste more like taco filling. A little fresh salsa on top brings it all together. Sometimes my kids like cheese, lettuce, or ranch dressing on this too. A wedge of lime in the box to squeeze before serving is always fun too.

Lunch Box Ideas - Pesto Pasta Lunch Box

Easy Pesto Pasta Salad Lunch Box

  • Cooked pasta + pesto + chopped tomato
  • Chocolate chips + almonds
  • Blueberries

This super simple pasta salad can be made easily in the morning because it’s only three ingredients. You can use leftover pasta if you have it, or you can cook some up while the kids eat breakfast. I normally just cook it the morning of because I’m standing at the stove making a hot breakfast most mornings anyhow. If that won’t work for your schedule, cook the pasta up ahead of time or simply prepare extra when you are cooking pasta for dinner and save some for lunches. Just stir the pasta with some prepared pesto and top with tomatoes. It’s simple, but it’s always a hit at my house.

Wasn’t that awesome and pretty painless? The noodles and curry are leftovers from a dinner and the boiled eggs and salad dressings can be made ahead of time. Even if you were whipping these up one at a time in the morning, they shouldn’t take more than a few minutes to put together.

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