Sit with the kids and write out a list of items they like – favorite fruits, acceptable sandwiches, hot lunches they would like and how you can incorporate calcium and a few snacks you both agree are healthy. – and then see if you can’t get a new routine in place to create weeks worth of healthy litterless school lunches!
School Lunch Checklist for Healthy Litterless Lunches
Swap Out Packaging
- no juice boxes – have juice at breakfast and take refillable water bottle to school
- no yogurt tubes – use small container, fill with plain or vanilla yogurt & frozen berries
- reduce packaged granola bars – try batch baking and freeze – so easy to pop in small container. Try these cookies or muffins or these amazing Chocolate Power Balls (kids favourite!)
Healthy Lunch Includes:
Include at least one of each of these in their lunch and you will have a healthy lunch for your kids growing bodies.
- Whole grains – whole wheat or grain bread, oatmeal cookies or muffins, whole grain dry cereal
- Protein – nitrate free chicken, turkey or ham slices, cheddar cheese, hummus, roasted chick peas, cottage cheese, milk, hard boiled egg, tuna
- Calcium – plain or vanilla yogurt, cottage cheese, cheese cubes, broccoli, milk
- Fruit or Veg– sliced fruit -apples, pears, nectarines, grapes, melon or veggies for dipping like carrots, broccoli, red pepper.
Simplify – 5 Container System
Teach kids a Container System and have them each be responsible to fill a few containers.
- Container 1 – sandwich or hot lunch must include protein and whole grains
- Container 2 – fruit or veg – sliced real fruit or vegetables
- Container 3 – yogurt with berries or pudding, cottage cheese, hummus
- Container 4 – whole grain snack – homemade or purchased – read labels carefully
- Container 5 – extra snack – dry cereal, pretzels, crackers
- Avoid carbonated beverages
- Avoid fruit punches
- Send refillable water bottles, a small reusable drink box with 100% juice or milk