It is that time of year again when we have to think up endless lunchbox ideas. So here are 4 days of lunchbox ideas.
A lunchbox stash list of things that is not too processed and high in sugar.
Also, download these FREE LUNCHBOX NOTES to include in your child’s lunchbox.
Types of lunchboxes
This is quite a wide topic with loads of different opinions and budgets but out of the experience, I will advise you not to buy lunchboxes from supermarkets just because of quality. It might last one school year if you are lucky. Also, look out for BPA-free plastic containers. I have used Sistema before but had to replace it every year or twice a year. So the only lunchbox that I would recommend would be My crunch box, which is available online. It is made locally, you can choose your own stickers. Our lunchboxes are going for a fourth year and the labels and lunchboxes are still as good as new. Only a few scratches. They are so strong and durable and will last for years. At R449 they have a hefty price tag but a Sistema lunchbox will cost you between R200-R300 and chances are you need to replace it after a year.
What I love about the Crunchbox are the inserts, you can get a three or five-compartment insert. We only have the 5-compartment insert which I prefer because it helps to keep the lunchboxes varied and not just to resort to sandwiches every day. But I have to be honest, it does add to mom quilt if I don’t have enough food to fill all 5 holes:)
Another essential item for lunchboxes is insulated water bottles or flasks.
Here are my favourites
I created these lunchboxes for Farm Table last year. Not everyone is lucky enough to have an organic supermarket close by but there are still loads of options available from supermarkets, or order from Wellness Warehouse, Faithfull to nature.
- Anything dipped in chocolate are a treat for children and if you use good quality chocolate it can be a healthy treat. For this lunchbox, I dipped some dried figs in chocolate.
- I add carrots and cucumber to my children’s lunchbox almost every day. They are crunchy, colorful, hydrating, and can last even if it is warm.
- My children enjoy roasted chickpeas, they are easy to make yourself in the oven or air fryer but the grumpy range is a great healthy protein-rich snack to keep in the pantry.
- Yogurt is often in our lunchboxes, I buy plain yogurt and then stir through honey or berry chia jam through. Lancewood is our favorite yogurt for a more affordable yogurt but any Organic yogurt is also an option. Remember to pack a spoon.
- When making sandwiches add in extra protein and not just syrup or jam. Protein options are peanut butter, hummus, egg, and mayo or tuna mayo.
- Crunchy chips are great options for a lunchbox if you can keep them separated from other foods. But try to buy chips without sunflower oil (omega-6 oils that cause inflammation) and too many preservatives. I buy Triggz chips or baked corn chips.
- Add a dip for chips like guacamole (add a squirt of lemons juice to prevent browning) hummus, or cream cheese.
- Apples are great for lunchboxes, if you cut them dip them in lemon water for a few seconds.
- Make a quick kebab with ham, cheese, and cucumber. It is practical to eat and colorful. The same could be done with some fruit, Pineapple, strawberries, and kiwi.
- If your children enjoy peppers add them to lunchboxes for extra colour. A colourful lunchbox is more appetizing.
- When including dried fruit, choose a healthier low sugar option. The bear range is available from a few supermarkets and health shops.
- If you enjoy baking try to bake just one thing a week for lunchboxes like muffins, quiches, and other healthy snacks. These black bean brownies are gluten-free and full of fibre and protein.
- Hummus is a great dip, buy or make your own. Add some crackers and vegetables for dipping.
- Bread does not always have to be in the shape of a sandwich. So add some variety with bagels, wraps, pittas, muffins etc. But remember to add protein to keep children fuller for longer.
- For a quick cheap snack dip some rice cakes in chocolate and store them in the fridge until set.
- Apples are great for dipping, add peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower butter to lunch boxes. Again adding protein to the snack.
- I like to add extra inserts into my lunchboxes for colour and to keep things organised, these are Nanuki Space Rocks
- Wraps are great for lunchboxes with falafel, chicken mayo, or tuna mayo. I also add in cheese, purple cabbage, and carrots. I also make wrap triangles by adding a wrap to frying. Add cheese and ham and cover with another wrap. Flip over once brown and melted. Cut in triangles and cool down before placing in lunchbox otherwise, it will steam in the lunchbox.
Keep your pantry stocked
This way you can never run out of options. Whenever I have almost nothing left in the pantry I always make popcorn. That is a great and quick lunchbox filler.
Here are also some ideas of food that are great for lunchboxes to add to your shopping list.
Hope this has helped! Let me know if I can help you out with more ideas. Please comment and share if you found this blogpost helpful.
Here are some recipes from my blog that make excellent lunchbox fillers