There are about five different lunches my daughter really likes so we rotate between them. There are still some lunch ideas I want to try with her that I found on 100 Days of Real Food but we know for sure that this is what she likes, and she’s so familiar with them she will tell me which one she wants. She helps make them sometimes too and I think involving them really helps so they will eat all their lunch! The following are the main items in the lunch. I also add fruit/veggies, a drink (a little organic juice and she takes water every day too), and sometimes a piece of string cheese, a snack, a smoothie, frozen yogurt, etc.
Boiled Egg and Salad
I boil the egg and prepare the salad the night before. The best way I have found to boil an egg is to boil the water, lower the temp right away to medium, and add the egg to the boiling water carefully, using a soup ladle. Cook for 12 min, uncovered. (I found a tip about adding 1/2 tsp of baking soda to the water while the egg is cooking and it will make the shell easier to peel. I tried this and it didn’t really make it easier for me but I don’t really have a lot of trouble peeling them.) Then take off the heat and let cool. I add ice to help it cool faster, then peel off the shell. Our eggs come out perfect every time and these are brown, cage-free organic eggs, of course.
I used to buy the lunchables at the store but they are full of preservatives, fake cheese, nitrates in the meat and the drinks that come with it are usually full of sugar and dyes. Plus the candy/cookie that comes with it is full of refined sugar, dyes, high fructose corn syrup, etc. Just make your own! We use Late July organic classic crackers, Simple Truth or Applegate lunch meat (nitrate free and uncured), and organic or local natural cheeses.
Peanut Butter & Jelly or Honey
Good old peanut butter & jelly (or honey). I started using my old bread machine again and make our own yummy fresh bread each week. I buy Cascadian Farm brand or Trader Joe’s juice-sweetened organic fruit spreads, local raw honey, and Trader Joe’s organic peanut butter. It is one ingredient, organic peanuts! You do have to stir the peanut butter before use but it’s really not a big deal and you only have to stir it up once. Then you refridgerate it and it’s fine. If you need a peanut-free alternative, there’s almond butter, sunflower seed butter, hazelnut butter, and other options out there. Served with Annie’s organic bunny crackers.
Variety of Stuff
This could consist of many different things. It just depends on what we have at the time but some ideas are: homemade trail mix, cheese & crackers, snack items, nuts, humus & carrots, frozen yogurt, a smoothie, etc.
My daughter likes cold pizza, or cold noodles/rice with butter, a little parmessan cheese and salt & pepper. That’s right, she will actually eat cold rice. I will usually add something like ‘ants on a log’, which is celery sticks with peanut butter and raisins.
The sandwich container and smoothie-pop-molds can be found here. And here’s an environmentally friendly option for a lunch container, and what we use to keep the lunches cold:
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