Ideas for a "brown bag" kids lunch


#1

Hi there. My daughter is in a day camp while I am at work and I need to figure out some packed lunches that she can take. The problem is I can't come up with much variety with the constraints I have. So I was hoping some other moms would have some ideas they could share.

She can't pack anything with peanuts or nuts and there is no refrigeration (although I have an insulated lunch bag for her and ice packs--so I can keep stuff cool). There is also no way to heat food. The big kicker is my daughter hates lunchmeat.

In the past I've packed cream cheese and jelly sandwiches, bagels with cream cheese and jelly, cheese sandwiches, and cold cheese only quesodillios. Sides are easy to figure it, it's that "main" item in the lunch. Generally for sides I pack some sort of fruit and a special treat (cookie, pretzels, or something). I also pack those boxed/shelf milks (cold of course).

I think my daughter is bored with my ideas and I need a few more to change things up. If it helps, she's 7-years-old (so she has very simple, kid tastes for the most part). Some of her favorite healthy foods that are easy to pack include tomatoes, melon, apples, peaches, (most fruit really), whole wheat bagels, anything on a tortilla, cheese, and avocado. She eats other things too, that's just what comes to mind. Any ideas are greatly appreciated.... thanks!


#2

Google "bento lunches" or "bento blogs" and see if you can come up with something fun and cute that can translate well into whatever containers you have on hand. Half of what makes bento delicious is the food, and the other half is the presentation. :) But there are tons of bento blogs where people photograph and keep track of their lunches and they make plenty of use of American foods. And even at 7, she might be able to have fun helping you pack it the night before.

Good luck!


#3

[quote="mellowcalico, post:1, topic:246944"]
Hi there. My daughter is in a day camp while I am at work and I need to figure out some packed lunches that she can take. The problem is I can't come up with much variety with the constraints I have. So I was hoping some other moms would have some ideas they could share.

She can't pack anything with peanuts or nuts and there is no refrigeration (although I have an insulated lunch bag for her and ice packs--so I can keep stuff cool). There is also no way to heat food. The big kicker is my daughter hates lunchmeat.

In the past I've packed cream cheese and jelly sandwiches, bagels with cream cheese and jelly, cheese sandwiches, and cold cheese only quesodillios. Sides are easy to figure it, it's that "main" item in the lunch. Generally for sides I pack some sort of fruit and a special treat (cookie, pretzels, or something). I also pack those boxed/shelf milks (cold of course).

I think my daughter is bored with my ideas and I need a few more to change things up. If it helps, she's 7-years-old (so she has very simple, kid tastes for the most part). Some of her favorite healthy foods that are easy to pack include tomatoes, melon, apples, peaches, (most fruit really), whole wheat bagels, anything on a tortilla, cheese, and avocado. She eats other things too, that's just what comes to mind. Any ideas are greatly appreciated.... thanks!

[/quote]

leftover pizza is always a idea


#4

all those things she likes with a protein rich dip

make "wings" from boneless chicken tenders and any wing sauce, chill in snack bags, our grandkids eat them cold all the time

she might eat deli ham or turkey if you have them cut it thick and then you cut in in strips also for dipping or just to eat in hand, or cut in cubes with cubed cheese

wraps in tortillas, and chicken, tuna salad or similar filling, most kids eat anything in a tortilla esp with packets of sauce they like

why don't lunchables come with chocolate dipped broccoli or pizza flavored carrots?

you might take her shopping and challenge her to pick out some interesting healthy snack and lunch foods, or learn simple recipes (also gives you a good summer activity)


#5

[quote="midori, post:2, topic:246944"]
Google "bento lunches" or "bento blogs" and see if you can come up with something fun and cute that can translate well into whatever containers you have on hand. Half of what makes bento delicious is the food, and the other half is the presentation. :)

[/quote]

Yay, bentos! :D justbento.com/ is a nice one, with all sorts of information and meal ideas.


#6

Hey... thanks for the Bentos idea! I never really thought of it (although I've heard of them). And my daughter is the type that would love things like heart shaped sandwiches, etc. I just need to find containers that work.. I can mix that with Puzzle's idea and have her shop for her lunches and create them herself (with my veto power because she comes up with weird combinations... and trust me, she won't eat them, lol).


#7

(i'll be looking at the bento links soon as i'm done posting. that looks fun!)

my daughter naomi's all time favorite packed lunch ( i even put it in her hello kitty lunch bag when she's home) are w/w silver dollar pancakes made into mini sandwiches. she loves hers spread with peanutbutter and honey. but cream cheese, honey and cinnamon spread is great on them too. cream cheese, cocoa and a little sugar is another favorite spread.

add all the fruits and veggies on the side and there's a great lunch.

(a note-- once cooked in the griddle, let them cool completely on a rack before spreading. left to cool overnight is fine.)


#8

Is it no nuts or just no peanuts?

If its just no peanuts you can do nutella and fluff or almond butter and jelly.

Or even applebutter and bannana


#9

[quote="puzzleannie, post:4, topic:246944"]

why don't lunchables come with chocolate dipped broccoli or pizza flavored carrots?

[/quote]

Puzzleannie, this is so bad, it almost sounds like a "what's fried at the fair this year?" kind of thing...:D

Our grocery store sells waffles in cellophane. No refrigeration needed. They would be good to dip in yogurt, or fruit dip. Perhaps a wrap that your daughter makes for herself, letting her choose whatever kinds of vegetables and cheeses she likes. Sometimes, kids enjoy things they made for themselves, even if we think they are weird. Love the pancake sandwich idea. monicatholic!


#10

Since you can have an insulated bag, I'd consider a pasta salad with whatever she likes in it. The dressing can be mayo-based or vinegrette-based. The proteins can be lunch meat, legumes such as chickpeas, hard-cooked eggs, or cheeses.

You can also make pasties, which are just turn-overs baked with meat and potatoes (or whatever she likes) inside. There are lots of ethnic variations on that.

Also, if she doesn't like sandwiches, I found that my kids just didn't like soggy sandwiches. If I packed the filling and the bread separately, they were OK with it.

Finally, if she's bored you might ask her what sounds good to her. She may have seen lunches in the other kids' bags that piqued her interest. That's a good place to start.


#11

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