So I've gathered up some great ideas from our friends at Bentology, the makers of the Bentology (former Bento) lunch boxes. You can find these fabulous lunch boxes here, but if you already have a lunch box system you love you can of course pack these ideas in whatever you have on hand.
I've included a full school-week worth of ideas, and as always feel free to swap to suit your child's needs and tastes. Personally I'd have to swap most of the veggie ideas to fruit for my picky eater, and if you have a nut-free school you'll want to swap out any suggested nuts.
So go ahead and make them your own! :)
#1 Delight The Senses
- Sandwich of deli ham on multigrain whole wheat bread
- Cut veggies
- Asian pear, which are ripe when purchased but will keep up to three months in the fridge
- Granola bar
#2 Frozen Snowman
- Onigiri Rice Balls Snowman (how to below)
- Spears of romaine lettuce hearts
- Raw, simple fresh cut veggies for sweetness and crunch—we picked carrots and snow peas
- Sliced apple
Onigiri Snowman Ingredients
- 1 1/2 cups sushi rice
- 2 cups cold water
- Rinse rice in cool water, drain.
- Bring the rice and the 2 cups of water to a simmer in a saucepan, cover and lower the heat to medium-low for 15 minutes.
- Turn off heat, keep saucepan covered for another 10 minutes.
- Allow the rice to cool.
Leave the rice plain, or mix in your favorite herbs, seasonings, and finely chopped meat and vegetables by placing the filling in the center of the rice ball. Use different fillings for each ball for variety—leftover baked fish or fried chicken are perfect.
Pick the right fillings and you won't need a dipping sauce. Mix in a bit of soy sauce, lemon juice, mayonnaise, or hot sauce before tucking it into the rice and forming a ball.
Dress your snowman with seaweed eyes and buttons, and carrots for the hat and nose.
#3 Yummy Pizza Lunch
- Leftover pizza
- Cut veggies
- Raw unsalted almonds
#4 Taco Salad
- Ground beef, precooked with taco seasoning mix (great use for leftovers from taco night)
- Iceberg lettuce, shredded
- Cherry tomatoes, the larger ones chopped
- Shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese
- Crumbled Tortilla chips
- Taco Sauce
- 2 slices of toast
- Egg salad (be sure to include an ice pack)
- Sliced orange
- Red pepper strips