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Mums’ Lunchbox Tips

Pink lunchbox with a sandwich and an apple insideGiving your child their lunchbox with a vegemite sandwich, fruit, and crackers every day is easy, but definitely boring at the same time.

Keeping kids interested in what’s in their lunchboxes is a task that requires a little more thinking and preparation.

The time we’ve spent trawling through forum posts has unsurfaced some tips for lunchbox success that you can try with your kids.

Thanks to our Bub Hub mums for these handy hints!

Yoghurt can be good

It’s healthy, yummy, and can be frozen for freshness and to use as a cooler brick, making it an age-old favourite in the lunchbox. But when yoghurt doesn’t play nicely, it really doesn’t. Many a mum has spoken of picking up their kids to find them with yoghurt covered, stinking, sticky clothes and school bag, needing to be washed immediately and dried for the next day. The yoghurt had either exploded in their bag before they’d gotten to it, or the special squeeze-pack or tubular yoghurts had proven too difficult for little hands, and ended up everywhere. Perhaps a plastic container (water-tight, but easy to open) is the only way yoghurt can be lunchbox-friendly, and that’s without going into the business of lost spoons.

Litter-free lunchboxes

These are all the new rage in our eco-friendly world. Parents are now trying to limit the amount of rubbish that their kid’s lunchbox creates at break time. Using all containers to package the food will hopefully stop any litter that can be produced. So now there’ll less litter to clean up at lunch time (or potentially be left on the ground).

A sandwich once or twice a week isn’t terrible …

… but I still get flashbacks to school when the sandwich every day always used to taste bad, regardless of its quality of bread, fillings, or freshness. I think my brain just developed an aversion to it, and your kids’ brains could too. Before they get bored of sandwiches, try replacing them with other tasty lunch meals at least a couple times a week. For their main lunch, try:

  • rolls, wraps, or rice crackers instead of bread
  • leftovers from dinner
  • salads (Caesar, garden, pasta, etc.)
  • savoury or sweet muffins
  • homemade pizza
  • scrolls
  • rice paper/sushi rolls
  • kabana, cheese, and crackers
  • mini quiches
  • shish kebabs (meat or fruit/veggie)
  • homemade sausage or veggie rolls
  • burritos or tacos
  • pasta (mac and cheese, spaghetti, etc.)
  • pikelets or pancakes with fruit
  • cut up veggies with dip (hummus, tzatziki, etc.)

Snacks don’t have to be boring either

Try some of these healthy ideas to accompany their main meal, or mix and match any of the options on both lists:

  • fruit salad
  • corn on the cob
  • cut up veggies
  • trail mix (seeds, dry cereal, and dried fruit)
  • homemade cookies
  • plain popcorn
  • homemade slice or muffins (sweet or savoury)

For drinks, the majority of mums go with water

The best way is a bottle half frozen then filled up before leaving so water is ice cold without having to wait for it to melt in order to get any out. The occasional frozen 100% juice popper is good too, and on cooler days maybe a low fat milk popper, frozen or not.

Try out any of these lunchbox packing tips and see what your kids like best, or better yet, brainstorm some new and fresh ideas unique to your family!

For more great info, check out our Back to School Hub.

Image credit:aidaricci/123RF Stock Photo

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