What Is A Good Lunch For SchoolThis is what a school lunch should consist of: protein, vegetables, and fruit. You can also have your choice of drink. Do not allow yourself to eat: candy, sugary drinks, fast foods such as McDonald’s or Taco Bell, as well as foods with lots of fat, sugar and salt. This will eliminate all the junk from your diet. Now that you know what a good lunch for school is and isn’t, don’t forget these simple tips and start eating healthy for school today!
Lunches for school need to provide enough energy for the students to make it through the school day. It needs to be easy to store and also easy to carry. It’s beneficial if it also keeps things simple for the parents. This article discusses excellent lunch choices for kids during school or summer break.
What Is A Good Lunch For School
If your kid comes home from school with barely a bite taken out of their lunch, it may be a clue that it’s time to mix things up. We searched far and wide for inspiring school lunch ideas to keep things exciting after the luster of back-to-school has worn off.
1. Stuffed peppers
Those tiny sweet peppers are a colorful, kid-friendly favorite. Here, Pruss makes them the main player in the lunch box, and says this is a great “out of the comfort zone” option for kids that could stand to expand their culinary repertoire. These sweet mini peppers are filled with cream cheese and sprinkled with some Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel seasoning.
2. Quirky quesadillas
Quesadillas are super quick to make, can be stuffed with all sorts of surprises, and their crispy edges make them satisfying to bite into between classes. In our family we like to stuff them with spinach or beans, but Pruss says there is no reason to stick with the old standbys. Classic cheese is a surefire bet for picky eaters, but if you want to mix it up she recommends getting creative with combos like apple and honey, pizza toppings, or leftover chicken with a little bit of taco-style seasoning.
3. Breakfast For lunch
Breakfast isn’t just the most important meal of the day, it’s also the yummiest, which is why we are strong proponents of breakfast for dinner—and for lunch and snacks, but who is counting, really? The best breakfast of all? Pancakes and bacon, with a liberal pour of syrup. The only way to make that meal better? Put it on a stick! “Food on a stick is always more fun,” says Pruss. We agree.
These are a great Monday lunch, using leftover silver dollar pancakes from Sunday breakfast. Don’t forget the maple syrup for dipping—just be sure to put it in a well-sealed container.
4. Dumpling Day
Whether they are leftovers from last night’s dinner, or you have a frozen bag sitting in the freezer, pierogies, wontons, samosas, and potstickers travel well and make for a fun, quick-to-eat lunch that’s way more exciting than a turkey sandwich. They serve up great at room temperature and pair perfectly with a yummy dipping sauce or with just a handful of veggies, if you’re in a rush. And for kids that complain they “don’t have enough time to eat,” these are a fun finger food that can be eaten quickly while catching up on schoolyard gossip.
5. Leftover Pizza Bites
A soggy, leftover slice may have felt like a good breakfast option back when you were in high school or college, but for a little kid popping open their lunch box, it can feel pretty uninspired. Pruss has a simple tip for changing up last night’s pizza to make it more appealing: Transform it into pizza bites. Just cut last night’s pizza into small squares and suddenly your quick weeknight dinner has turned into a breezy lunch prep idea that kids will devour.
6. Chicken And Waffles
It’s school lunch, soul food style. Who doesn’t love chicken and waffles? Just skewer them up for a lunch that’s filling and fun. Be sure to get a well-sealed dipping container for the maple syrup.
7. Pasta Dippers
Pasta salad is kinda boring (especially from a kid’s perspective). We love this tapas-style idea for turning leftover pasta into a dipper-style lunch. Pruss likes using bow tie pasta, for a fun look, and recommends having kids help out by letting them skewer the pasta, and any additions you’d like, like pepperoni, peppers, olives, and mozzarella balls, in different patterns.
8. DIY Lunchables
Healthier than store bought, and just as easy! The sky is the limit on this customizable spin on an old favorite. Just get your child’s favorite deli meat (pepperoni is a perfect size, but you can also cut ham, turkey, or vegan lunch meats down to fit).Then make it fun by cutting any cheese they like into a fun shape. We love Pruss’s idea of getting kids involved with the prep of this lunch.
Pruss’s pro tip: Store the crackers in a separate snack bag or a well-sealed container. The meats and cheeses will naturally let off a bit of moisture, so storing crackers separately will help to keep them crisp.
9. Wrap It Up
It’s time to think outside the bun. Wraps are basically a sandwich in disguise. When cut up into smaller pinwheels and served up in a bento box, they transform traditional sandwich components into a fun and easy-to-eat option. Spreads like mayonnaise or mustard, and non-traditional ideas like hummus or guacamole, help the wraps stay rolled up throughout the day, without the need for picks.
Pruss’s pro tip: Shredded cheese makes for an easier roll up than sliced cheeses.
10. Fried Favorites
There is nothing wrong with chicken nuggets or fish sticks. Both taste great at room temperature, they pair well with crunchy lunch box veggies, and kids love them. As many of us who contemplated formula feeding our infants were told: “fed is best” and that’s a philosophy to stand by if you have picky eaters.
Pruss’s pro tip: Chicken nuggets are A-OK once in a while. If you’re feeling guilty about sending your kids off with fried food, toss in a few veggies in some fun shapes.
11. Pesto Pinwheels
Fun, delicious, and simple to make, these pesto pinwheels are a go-to for Pruss since her kids gobble them up. Simply take a roll of Pillsbury crescent rolls, unroll it flat and seal all the perforated edges to form one large sheet of dough. Spread with your favorite toppings combo like pesto and shredded cheese, or tapenade and cream cheese. Using a pizza wheel, cut into 2-inch strips, then roll and cook as directed on the dough package. Cool completely before packing in the bento box.
Pruss’s pro tip: Mix up your pesto options. Pruss recommends using a basil pesto for one half of the rolls and a sun dried tomato pesto for the other.
Do something daring next time you pack your kid’s lunch by giving deli turkey a whole new look. Without the bread around to dull their savory flavors, simple cheddar and turkey really sing—so much so that the kids won’t even mind the spinach.
13. Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad Stuffed Peppers
Chicken salad has never looked as appetizing as it does in this colorful and kid-friendly stuffed pepper recipe. Opt for a store-bought rotisserie bird for a no-cook school lunch that’s a cinch to prepare.
14. Vegetarian Sushi Cups
Don’t have the time or inclination to try your hand at homemade sushi? Same. Skip the seaweed and serve up this vegetarian version instead. Full of veggies and umami, kids will be eager to gobble up these tasty, dainty cups.
15. Meal-Prep Mayo-Less Potato Salad
Potato salad without mayonnaise may sound like sacrilege, but don’t knock it ‘til you try it. This innovative update uses sour cream for a dish that tastes every bit as yummy as its classic counterpart, just with a lighter, tangier twist.
16. Grilled Peach, Prosciutto And Mozzarella Sandwich
The sad-looking ham sandwich of your youth just got a fancy upgrade. Sweet, creamy and savory, your kid will be wild about this sammie and so will you. (We’d make two if we were you.)
17. Chicken Pesto Focaccia Sandwich
Fluffy focaccia, breaded chicken, candy-sweet sun-dried tomatoes, salty feta and pesto. The ingredients kind of speak for themselves, but let it be known that this sandwich is anything but boring and sure to please every palate.
18. Butternut Squash And Goat Cheese Pasta Salad
When butternut squash season arrives, get to the farmers market and make your mini a gourmet meal that goes down easy. To be honest, this pasta salad is almost too cool for school…but it still tastes just as divine in the cafeteria as it does at the dinner table.
19. Avocado Egg Salad Sandwich
Avocado gets a little kick from a dollop of Dijon and a couple tablespoons of capers. Yep, this egg salad sandwich promises to go down like a breath of fresh air at lunchtime.
20. Buffalo Chicken Wraps With Blue Cheese and Celery
If you score a rotisserie chicken, this boldly-flavored lunch wrap comes together in mere minutes. You may need to adjust the Buffalo sauce for young ones who are sensitive to spice, but the effort-to-reward ratio makes it hard to beat.
21. Salami, Artichoke And Ricotta Pasta Salad
Ah, salami: The cafeteria staple that rarely stirs excitement. Unless, of course, you toss it into a restaurant-worthy pasta salad with artichoke hearts and creamy ricotta, in which case you have the kind of lunch that won’t come back home with your kid.
22. The Ultimate Grilled Chicken Sandwich
Ready to not talk turkey? Make this grilled chicken sandwich—complete with creamy yogurt sauce and crispy onions—for your little one and you’ll both be singing the praises of poultry once again.
23. Mozzarella Meatball Frittata
Frittatas are a force to be reckoned with when it comes to making the most of leftovers (in this case, meatballs) and no matter the mix-in, they’re reliably delicious without reheating.
24. Roasted Cauliflower And Lentil Tacos With Creamy Chipotle
Swap the chipotle mayo for something milder like garlic mayo or green goddess dressing for kids who can’t take the heat, but don’t let it deter you from sending your little one to school with these scrumptiously seasoned (cumin, we love you) vegetarian tacos.
25. Creamy Cilantro Lime Southwestern Pasta Salad
Rotisserie chicken, black beans, mild cheese and sweet corn mingle in this pasta salad, which is plenty filling at lunchtime and definitely not dull.