With back to school just around the corner, it can be hard to put together nutritious lunches that make the whole family happy. Kids want something fun, but we want to make sure they’re eating healthy.
Michael F. Jacobson, Executive Director, Center for Science in the Public Interest, outlined in a Huffington Post article why store-bought Lunchables are not the best choice despite how appealing they are to kids. That’s why DIY lunchables (or bento boxes for grown ups) are the perfect solution!
A Strong Foundation
Start with the right container. Anything with separate compartments is great, or even a larger container with silicone muffin cups and smaller containers works. You can pick them up at the grocery store or even find some at the dollar store.
Build Your Box
The standard bento box or lunchable typically has carbs, protein, veggies, fruit, and an optional sweet. A few ideas to get you started:
- Whole wheat pita, tomato sauce, shredded mozzarella, sliced veggies, and a peeled orange
- Brown rice, chicken or tofu, sautéed veggies, and strawberries
- Leftover pancakes or french toast, fruit leather, sliced sausages, and raspberries
- Sandwiches cut into shapes, diced melon, sliced veggies, and hummus
With DIY bento boxes and homemade lunchables, you can add some extra flair with fun shapes (use cookie cutters on sandwiches, cheese, and deli meats), make faces with fruit using toothpicks, or even add cute accessories. Play with your food and encourage your kids to as well!
When you are running tight on time in the morning add a packaged granola bar or granola minis from Made Good. We love them because they taste delicious and have a hidden serving of veggies.