I have a pretty limited lunch repertoire, to be honest. Yes, our diets need variety, but on the other hand, we mothers need sanity. And though I love food, sometimes it makes me nearly hyperventilate to start another meal juuuuuust as I finish cleaning up breakfast! So as long as lunch is healthy and whole food, there’s no need to stress, in my opinion, if raw carrots are the lunch veggie of choice for days on end. And some kids really like routine. Mine do. ( If I try to serve something other than oatmeal for breakfast Monday through Friday, the frowns are very serious.)
In fact, in addition to eating oats EVERY MORNING for breakfast, they would be happy to eat pb&j for lunch EVERY DAY. However, I don’t think peanuts, even organic ones, and wheat, even organic wheat, need to be on the menu every day. So I reaaaaally try to stay out of the lunch rut. I definitely need a few easy lunches. Ok, at least more than 1!!!
So here’s my list of easy lunches that work well as lunch-on-the-go or lunch at home around the table:
-PB&J on whole grain bread (organic pb with no sugar or oil added, no-sugar added fruit spread or raw honey or sliced banana) with raw veggie of choice (cucumber and carrot are our faves) and fruit
-Hot dog octopuses (organic, grass-fed, uncured hot dogs, Applegate Farms is the best) with onigiri (rice balls, a traditional Japanese lunch food) and veggie of choice (edamame, cucumber, carrot, broccoli) and fruit
-Hummus with wasa or other whole grain cracker, veggies and fruit
-Ham roses (uncured chemical-free variety, of course) on a bed of spinach, ranch for dipping, fruit and crackers
-Tuna salad (my kids have a love-hate relationship with tuna salad…) with crackers or toast, fruit and veggie
-Marinated tofu with bread 'n butter, fruits and veggies
Fillers: a few raw nuts, a scoop of granola, some raisins or dried papaya, a single dark chocolate
That gets you through a whole week of cold lunches! That’s pretty good, in my opinion. Lots of weeks we will have soup or leftovers for a lunch, so not all of these lunches get made every week. And like I said, some weeks we have the old PB&J more than once!
Here is my kids other favorite lunch, the hot dog octopus lunch (see how nicely that allows you to avoid nasty old hot dog buns?), from a plate to the ECOlunchboxes Three-in-One lunch box:
To make the hot dog octopuses, cut each dog in half, then make (2) 1" slits up from the cut end. Boil in water for 5 minutes and the tentacles will curl right up! At this point a Japanese mother would deocrate the octopuses with eyes and such... but for this lazy American mama, the sea creatures are straight-up done at this point.
Come back tomorrow for a full review of the ECOlunchboxes Three-in-One lunch cube.
"Above all, the child must be well-fed."