School Lunches Around the World – Great Inspiration for Your Kid’s Next Meal

School Lunches Around the World

Introduction

Are your lunch ideas getting a bit stale? Do you struggle to think of fresh, new ideas that your kids will actually enjoy? If this is the case, then this is the article for you! In this list, we’re drawing inspiration internationally. We’re looking at some fun school lunch ideas from around the world. These cultural ideas will add a fresh new take on your kid’s next school lunch, and will open up a world of flavors for them to enjoy!

Why International Lunches?

International lunches open up (literally) a world of culinary possibilities for you to explore. Not only does this provide your child with tons of variety and new flavors when it comes to their packed lunch, it provides you with ample inspiration and tons of new types of lunches to try out. You can make lunches that you and your kids will love!

International flavors are a great cure for picky eaters! By introducing your child to new flavors from a young age, you’re helping them to become comfortable with all sorts of flavors and textures, and then you can continue to introduce them to tons of fun options that they can’t get from a typical school lunch.

But there’s only so much we can say about this fun area of cuisine without checking out some examples. Next up, we’re looking at our favorite international school lunches. We chose these lunches not only for their great tastes, but also because they’re quick and easy to make. And when it comes to a packed lunch, ease-of-preparation is always a top concern.

Sushi

Let’s start with one of the more popular international meals – sushi! Sushi is a fun and delicious meal alternative and a healthy food. Although it tends to be a bit controversial among young kids, those that like it, tend to like it a lot. So, whether you make your own sushi or simply order take-out, it keeps well and makes for great leftovers to pack into school lunches. Sushi is full of vegetables and high-protein fish options, making it a great, well-rounded school lunch. Have some kimchi (a fermented cabbage dish) or miso soup on the side depending on what your child enjoys.

Sushi

Meatballs

How about something from Italy? Meatballs are a fun, nutritious school meal, and so easy to make. Try cutting up some carrots and throwing them into the mix for some added mixed veggies! Once you have the meatballs made, you can serve them on their own, on a sandwich, in some pasta, or mix it up day by day! Make some caprese salad with fresh veggies or an Italian vegetable soup on the side for a healthy meal.

And there’s one other Italian lunch that kids tend to love. Cheese, tomato sauce, pepperoni, and crust, something along those lines.

Meatballs

Cuban Sandwich

A Cuban sandwich is one of our favourite sandwich options, and its name displays its heritage proudly! There are a few variants on a Cuban sandwich, but you don’t have to stay completely true to the original to make a delicious lunch. Just take a loaf of bread, slice lengthwise, and then add ham, mustard, pickles, swiss cheese, and butter. It might not be 100% authentic, but it’s quick, easy, and delicious. Pack a fruit cup as a snack or some fresh oranges for a well-rounded healthy meal.

Chicken “Gyro” Wrap

A chicken gyro wrap is another healthy lunch option. As with our above option, you don’t have to stay 100% Greek authentic to have a tasty, quick lunch. Simply season some chicken (olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, and oregano work great), and either boil it or grill it. Cube it up, and wrap it in some flatbread with some tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce, and tzatziki.

Sure, it’s not made the completely traditional way, but you just want a quick and easy lunch! This is also packed with protein and fresh veggies, and your child will love it. Prepare a cucumber salad on the side for a full serving of veggies.

Burritos

Burritos are another great choice, and make for a relatively healthy lunch. The great thing about burritos is how flexible they are. For meat, you can go with chicken, steak, ground beef, pulled pork, or various other options! Then, you can dress it however you want. Try brown rice, pinto beans, salsa, sour cream, lettuce, and tomatoes! Burritos are easy to make, super filling, and very delicious.

Ramen

Ramen is another great option for kids. Instant ramen might not be the healthiest lunch, but it isn’t too bad. Kids can heat it up using the microwave at school. You can even pack some veggies for them to add to the ramen once it’s cooked.

Of course, instant ramen is a poor substitute for the real thing, but we’re going to assume you don’t have the hours/days to spare which are necessary to make ramen broth!  

Hummus

Hummus is an awesome ingredient to add a Middle Eastern flair to any sandwich or wrap. Made with chickpeas, hummus is delicious and quite healthy as well. Try adding it to any sandwich or wrap, or even just pack a side of veggies & hummus. A tasty hummus wrap includes ham, hummus, cucumber, and tzatziki, all wrapped in a flatbread.

Hummus & Crackers

Falafel

Keeping on the subject of chick peas and Middle Eastern food, we have the falafel. Falafel is ground, spiced chickpeas, packed into a ball and then deep-fried. They’re a little difficult to make yourself, so we recommend some store-bought falafel balls. Throw them into a flatbread wrap with tzatziki, cucumber, onion, and tomato. You’ve got a quick, nutritious lunch option.

Quinoa Salad

Quinoa is an ingredient that was popularized in South America, and has taken the world by storm in recent years. A quinoa salad is a great source of protein, and you can load it up with veggies as well. We recommend a simple balsamic vinaigrette dressing for your salad. Then, throw in some sliced onions, cucumbers, and tomatoes! It’s so easy to make, and it’s a delicious, refreshing lunch.

Conclusion

As you can see, international choices are a great way to liven up any child’s lunch. International flavors are a great way to add variety to your packed lunches, and to introduce new flavors which can broaden your child’s horizons. The options we included on our list are quick, nutritious, and easy to make. You couldn’t ask for much more for a school lunch!

Vegetarian Lunch Ideas for Teenagers

Vegetarian Lunch Ideas for Teenagers

Introduction

Packing lunches for a teen can be pretty difficult! You never know exactly what their new favorite food is, and then there’s the issue of how much to pack. Sometimes it seems like a growing teen is hungry no matter how much you feed them! In this article, we’re focusing on this issue, but we’re giving you vegetable-based recipe options for your vegetarian teenager.

What’s a Good Vegetarian Lunch for Teenagers?

Before we get started, let’s examine the main question – what makes a good vegetarian lunch for a teen?

First, you want to focus on nutrition, without neglecting taste. Teens need to eat healthy, because they need to fuel their growth and their active lifestyles. Focus on lunches that are dense and filling, without relying on added sugars. This means protein, healthy fats, and even carbs!

Additionally, don’t be afraid of big portions. Teens have big appetites, and they need a big lunch to fuel the rest of their day. So long as they are eating healthy, you shouldn’t have to worry about your teen eating more than you. Try not to overdo it, but pack a big, hearty lunch for your teen.

And of course, don’t forget taste! A lunch is only a good one if your teen actually enjoys it!

We have kept these tips in mind with all of our vegetarian options below. Let’s check out some hearty vegetarian lunch options for teens.

Tasty Vegetarian Lunches

Hummus and Tofu Wrap

Let’s start with a classic vegetarian lunch, the hummus and tofu wrap! Tofu is a great source of protein (about 8 grams per 100 gram serving), and is so easy to throw on sandwiches and wraps as a meat substitute. Hummus also contains about 8 grams of protein per 100 gram serving. This means that this is a delicious wrap, and also quite filling! Try adding some cucumber slices, tomato, and alfalfa sprouts.

Almond Butter and Apple Wrap

Almond Butter

Almond butter is a very versatile tool for any vegetarian diet. It is very calorically dense which means it’s very filling. It is high in protein and healthy fats. This makes it the perfect lunch to satisfy even the most active teens, not to mention it’s delicious! Almond butter and apple slices are a healthy take on the classic PB & J.

Bean Chili

Chili is such a great lunch option, and vegetarian chili packs all the taste of a traditional chili. Chili is great because you can make a big pot and have lunches for the whole week. Try adding some vegan sour cream to really top if off!

Bean Burrito

It doesn’t get much more hearty and filling than a burrito at lunch! Burritos are full of ingredients that fill you up and keep you full. Wrap up some rice, black beans, pinto beans, cheese (if your diet allows), salsa, vegan sour cream, lettuce, and tomato. You’re left with a well-rounded lunch that has all the carbs and protein needed to satisfy a hungry teen.

Pesto Pasta

Pesto pasta is super delicious, and it works just as well as leftovers the next day. The great thing about pesto pasta is that you don’t even need to heat it up! It works just fine at room temperature as a pasta salad. You can make your own pesto, or use a store-bought jar of pesto. Top it off by chopping up some high protein almonds and sprinkling them on top.

Hummus and Avocado Sandwich

A hummus and avocado sandwich is a great option, and quite filling! Avocados are a super food, they are very healthy and high in good fats. Mix some avocados, hummus, lettuce, mayo, and tomatoes and you’re left with a great lunch! If you want to make it even more filling, add some slices of tofu as a meat substitute.

Sushi

Sushi is a great lunch. Depending if your teen’s vegetarian diet allows fish, this can be a pretty easy choice. You can learn to make sushi yourself, but it’s probably easier to buy it pre-made. Sushi is full of veggies, and fish contains lots of healthy fat and protein. Additionally, the rice makes it deceptively filling!

Chickpea Salad

Chickpea SaladA chickpea salad is a simple lunch that is quite filling. Try using a basic olive oil and lemon dressing. Just mix the olive oil with a splash of lemon juice and some salt and pepper. In the salad itself, add chickpeas, red onion, avocado, fresh parsley, tomatoes, and bell pepper. An extremely healthy lunch, and the protein-rich chickpeas will keep your teen full for their busy afternoon.

Bean Salad

Similar to the chickpea salad, a bean salad is another way to turn a salad into a filling lunch. All you need is a basic vinaigrette dressing that you can find at any grocery store. Use a mix of pinto beans, black beans, and kidney beans, and add red onion, parsley, tomatoes, and bell peppers. Simple to make, and it keeps well in the fridge. Beans are quite filling due to their high protein and fibre content (about 20 grams of protein per 100 gram serving!).

Veggie Burger

Burgers are typically thought of as a dinner food, but there’s no reason they can’t be eaten for lunch as well! There are so many veggie burger options in any grocery store. You can cook them ahead of time and pack them in your teen’s lunch as you would any sandwich. Many veggie burger patties are high in protein and healthy fat, which will provide adequate fuel to any hungry teen. Dress up your burger with tomato, lettuce, cheese, and mustard!

Peanut Butter and Jam!

How about the classic PB & J sandwich for lunch? A great option here is to buy all natural peanut butter that is made 100% from just peanuts. It has the benefit of no added sugar, but is also much higher in protein and healthy fats. It’s much more filling than regular peanut butter, and better for you, too! Aim for a jelly with low added sugar if you really want to turn it into a healthy lunch. Sometimes the classics are popular for a reason!

Packing the Best School Lunches – Top 10 Tips

Packing the Best School Lunches

Intro

Packing a school lunch is kind of an art nowadays. From knowing what to pack that your kid will actually eat, to knowing how to make it nutritious, to having fresh ideas for what to pack every single day, there sure is a lot to think about when it comes to a healthy school lunch!

In this article, we’re giving you 10 tips for packing the best school lunches. We’re covering everything from nutrition, to planning, to mixing in different cuisines. These are sure to give you tons of school lunch ideas that go beyond packing the usual granola bar, celery sticks, apple slices, and lunch meat sandwich in your kids’ lunchboxes.

10 Tips for Packing the Best School Lunches

Talk to Your Kids

Our first tip may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how often it’s forgotten. Talk to your kids about what it is they actually like, and what it is they’d prefer to pack in their lunchbox. Kids will be much more likely to enjoy the lunches you pack if they are involved in the decision-making process!

Of course, this doesn’t mean just let them eat whatever they want (unless you want to be packing chocolate bars for lunch every day), but rather to involve them in the process, and let them settle on a range of options they enjoy that still make a healthy lunch. See if they want to be involved in the lunch packing process so they can see the healthy food and snacks going into their lunchbox.

Plan Ahead!

packing school lunch

You’d be surprised how much easier it is packing school lunch if you plan ahead for the week! Take some time each weekend to make a lunch schedule. Even if you just write it out and make kids’ lunches on the day-of, you’d be surprised how much time you save by simply knowing what you are going to pack each day. This also allows you to ensure that kid’s lunch hasa sufficient variety of fresh fruit and veggies, and are in line with a healthy lifestyle. Planning goes beyond your child’s lunchbox – you can even plan ahead on your own lunch to make sure you’re also getting a healthy lunch!

Prep Ahead (On Your Own Schedule)

If it works for you, then you can also prep ahead! Meal prepping is a popular trend these days, because it allows you to save time throughout the week by preparing all your meals at one time. Not only do you save time, but you save money on ingredients, and you make sure that your lunches are sufficiently healthy. If you have the time, then look into meal prepping as an option for school lunches.

Mix It Up

Our next tip is to mix it up! Lunches are so much more fun if they have sufficient variety. Don’t settle for the same old boring ham sandwich each day (although we’ve got nothing against the ham sandwich!). Try to settle on a few solid lunch options, and rotate through them regularly. This doesn’t mean you have to craft new lunch creations each day, but rather just to have a well-established routine of different options.

Hide the Veggies

For kids, we all know how difficult it can be to get a picky eater to eata veggie. Our next tip is to hide the veggies whenever possible. This is especially relevant for younger children, who simply might not eat their lunch if it contains something they don’t like. Whether you puree the veggies into a pasta sauce, hide them in a cheese quesadilla, or simply add them to a sandwich, there are many ways to make healthy options more tolerable for kids!

Don’t Be Afraid of the Classics

Our next tip is to not fear the classics! There can be a tendency among parents to think that the tried-and-true lunches lack sufficient variety, or that they seem like a “lazy” option. But remember, the classics are classics for a reason. So, don’t fear the turkey sandwich, the PB & J, or the ham & cheese sandwich. These all became lunchroom staples for a reason, after all.

Get Good Containers

good lunch container

Our next tip is to buy good lunch containers. Lunch containers make it so much easier to pack lunches, and you can find different varieties to suit your needs. Whether you need an insulated container to keep food fresh, a container with dividers to separate food, or simply a container that is easy for your child to lug around all day, there are many options, and you’d be surprised what a difference it can make in packing the perfect lunch.

Buy in Bulk

Next up is an economical no-brainer. Anything that you can conveniently buy in bulk, you should! Whether it’s non-perishables, or something that you know you will be using quite often, you’d be surprised at the money you’d save by buying in bulk. If you find you’re packing rice in school lunches often, then why not buy a big bag of it? Not only do you save money, but you save yourself additional trips to the grocery store.

Don’t Be Afraid of Repeating

Don’t be afraid of doing the same lunch twice in a row! While it might seem a bit weird at first, there’s nothing wrong with repeating lunches day after day, especially if it’s a well-balanced lunch that your child really likes. Just be sure to talk to them to be sure they’re really enjoying it. If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it – it’s just lunch after all.

Don’t Be Afraid to Try New Cuisines

If you’re running out of inspiration and new ideas for lunches, why not look to a different cuisine altogether? Looking to different styles of cooking for new lunch ideas can be a great way to spark new inspiration and get you excited about lunch all over again. For example, if you’re tired of the same old sandwiches, maybe try a bento box style lunch.

Include a Treat (But Not Every Day)

Finally, there’s nothing wrong with the odd treat every now and then. Because let’s face it, nothing is going to get a kid more excited about lunch than a treat! Not everything has to be perfectly healthy, so why not throw something in there that they’re guaranteed to enjoy. Just remember, as with all areas of nutrition, it’s about moderation. Portion control is huge, and you definitely don’t need to include a treat every day. After all, it’s not really a treat if it’s just a staple of their everyday lunch!

We hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to packing lunches. With a few easy tweaks, we’re sure you’ll be packing lunches like a pro!

No-Sandwich Kid’s Lunch Ideas to Try

Introduction

Are you tired of the same old boring lunches? When it comes to preparing a kid’s lunch box, it’s almost too easy to throw together a sandwich and send it off with your child each day. While we certainly aren’t against the sandwich on principle, it can be worth it to have a new school lunch idea every once in a while.

In this article, we’ll give you ideas to replace that same old sandwich each day. These are all quick and easy to make, and will give your child that much-needed variety. After all, anything gets boring after a while, even their favourite sandwich.

Why Ditch the Sandwich?

Let’s get this out of the way first, we aren’t against the sandwich! Sandwiches can be a nutritious, healthy lunch. This is especially true if you use whole-grain bread, non-processed meats, and load it up with veggies.

That being said, it’s the simple truth that anything gets boring after a while. If you’re sending your kid off to school each day with the same sandwich, then they might need a change. Here are 15 fun no-sandwich kid’s lunches that you can use to spice up your kid’s lunch box and have your child excited for lunch each day.

Sushi

Sushi is an awesome alternative for any lunch box. It’s packed with fresh and healthy ingredients, making it a super easy lunch idea.If your child is a fan of sushi, then this one is a no-brainer. Learning to make sushi is a little complex, but once you get the hang of it you can make some delicious creations. Try a cucumber and cream cheese sushi roll for an easy cold lunch.

Pesto Pasta

A simple pesto pasta is a great lunch. Pesto is a healthy and filling alternative to tomato sauce. Try throwing in some tomatoes, shredded cheese, spinach, or chicken breast to the pasta as well. The great thing about this lunch is that it can be leftovers from the night before, and can easily be eaten cold!

Pulled Pork on Rice

Pulled Pork on Rice

Try making some barbecue pulled pork in a slow cooker over the weekend, and you’ll have enough for lunches all week! Serve over rice and your kid can heat it up when they get to the lunchroom. Easy and healthy!

Hard Boiled Eggs and Ham

Whip up a hard-boiled egg or two and use them as sides for your kid’s packed lunch all week. Serve with some ham slices, and a side of veggies and hummus! It’s a well-rounded lunch that tastes great. For a nutritious snack, add some cucumber slices or cherry tomatoes for a veggie serving.

Chicken Nuggets

Chicken nuggets have an unhealthy stigma attached to them. However, if you make some homemade breaded chicken nuggets, they can actually be quite healthy. Pack them together with some sliced veggies or snap peas and it’s a healthy meal.

Tacos

Tacos are a great lunch. You can pre-make them, or package a few ingredients and your child can throw a taco together themselves. Some sliced chicken breast, sour cream, salsa, lettuce, and tomatoes are all you need for a healthy taco lunch!

Quinoa Salad

Quinoa salad is a great choice for lunches, and you can whip it up fast for an entire week. It is great as a side, or you can throw some chicken breast in a quinoa bowl to make it into a full meal. Most recipes are packed with veggies and with flavor!

Chicken Wrap

Do wraps count as sandwiches? Maybe so, but we’ll avoid that debate and promise to only include one on our list. Some sliced chicken breast, tomatoes, lettuce, cheddar cheese, and mustard makes for a classic lunch wrap that most any kid will love!

Make Your Own Lunchables

Lunchables are the classic packaged lunch that kids love. However, they’re also quite full of preservatives and some ingredients you might not be so crazy about. You can make your own pretty easily! Just take some crackers, some healthy sliced meats, and some cheese, and your kid can have their very own Lunchables without all of the questionable ingredients.

Egg Cups

Egg Cups

Egg cups are quick and easy. Whisk some eggs, mix with veggies and ham (or chicken), put in a muffin tray, and bake. It’s fast, easy, and you can make a bunch of these at once. These are the perfect lunch because they’re so nutritious and tasty!

Mini Pizzas on Tortillas

You can bake some mini pizzas right on tortillas. It’s a simple lunch, and your kids will love it simply becauseit’s pizza! All you need are tortillas, tomato sauce, cheese, and toppings.

Meat and Vegetables

You can also just keep it simple with some classic meat and vegetables! A protein and some veggies makes for a great lunch. Try some chicken breast or pork chops, and pair it with broccoli or carrots. It can even be leftovers from the night before, it’s all good!

Burrito Bowl

Burrito bowls are delicious and packed with tasty ingredients. It’s just as simple as taking the ingredients of a traditional burrito and throwing it in a bowl. Take some rice, pulled meats, lettuce, black beans, tomato, salsa, and sour cream, and mix it together.

Turkey Meatballs

Meatballs are beloved by most kids, and turkey meatballs put a healthy twist on the classic ground beef dish. Turkey meatballs and a side of veggies is a delicious lunch that is also full of good stuff. Once again, this is a meal that you can prep ahead for multiple lunches!

Chicken Salad

Try a chicken salad sandwich, only without the sandwich! Chicken salad is rightfully delicious all by itself. Throw in some celery and cucumber for that extra crunch. It becomes a well-rounded lunch that your kids are sure to enjoy.

Conclusion

Thanks very much for checking out or list of no-sandwich lunch ideas.

With this list, we’re focused on giving you maximum variety so that your lunch options never become stale and repetitive. We also focused on giving you options that are nutritious without sacrificing taste. We know that kids can be picky eaters, so if you can find a routine of lunches that are good for them and that they actually enjoy, then your lunch routine becomes a walk in the park!

Packing The Best School Lunches – Top 10 Pro Tips

Packing The Best School Lunches

Packing lunches is perhaps one of the most dreaded parts of your week. From deciding what to pack, to making it, to ensuring that it is healthy, to keeping it fresh and secure, there is so much to think about for what should be such a simple meal!

In this article, we’re giving you ten tips to turn this most frustrating part of your week into one of the easiest. Follow these tips and making lunches will be a quick and easy routine. Eliminate the stress and pack something for your child that it is good for them and they enjoy.

Tip 1: Plan Ahead for The Week

The first tip is that planning is everything. No one likes having to scramble every single morning to have to make lunches. And it’s even more hectic when you don’t even know what you’re going to make!

Our first tip is to use a calendar to plan lunches for the whole week. This ensures that your lunches have variety, are healthy and balanced, and taste great! When it comes time to prepare, simply check your list and prep. No more confusion as to what to make each day.

Tip 2: Use Plan to Grocery Shop

Our next tip is to use your weekly calendar to grocery shop. Get all your ingredients at once, so you don’t have to run to the store every day. Take an inventory of what you have in your house already, and then check your plan to see what else you need. This way, when the time comes to make lunches, all you have to do is check your list and use the ingredients you bought!

As you can see, by doing all this work up front you are saving yourself tons of time down the road. One plan, and one grocery shop, and you are good to go!

Tip 3: Healthy Alternatives

With all the options out there all day, you can find a healthy alternative for almost anything! Lunch is a very important meal, so it’s imperative that you find a way to make it healthy. Search for a healthy alternative for each item you buy. For example, multigrain bread instead of white bread.

These little changes make a huge difference, and often it doesn’t involve sacrificing taste!

Tip 4: Buy in Bulk

Tip 4 Buy in Bulk

When possible, buy your ingredients in bulk. Not only does this save you money, it saves you repeated trips to the store. If there’s an item that you use a lot, and doesn’t spoil easily, that’s a great candidate for buying in bulk. Look at your weekly plans, and look at your ingredients list to identify anything that you can simply buy in bulk. You’d be surprised how much time and money you actually save.

Tip 5: Include a Treat

A great idea for any kids’ lunch is to include a treat! A healthy lunch doesn’t mean they can’t have something sweet as well. Kids enjoy it, and it’s extra motivation for them to eat their meal. Just be sure it is a reasonable portion, and that they don’t overdo it. Pack something tasty but reasonably sized – like a cookie, a pudding, a granola bar, or something of this variety.

Tip 6: Don’t Forget the Fruit and Vegetables (But Make Sure It’s What They Like)

Talk to your kids and find out what they actually like in terms of fruits and vegetables. We all know they’re important to include, but if your kid isn’t going to eat it then it defeats the purpose! The easy solution is to talk to them. Include them in the process and find out what you can pack that they will eat.

This advice extends to the entire lunch-making process, but is particularly important in the tricky area of fruits and vegetables.

Tip 7: Use Dividers!

Next up is dividers. If food isn’t properly separated, you run the risk of it mixing in an undesirable way. Whether it becomes wet, moist, or crushed, you need to actually pack the lunch in an efficient way. One option is to buy containers with built in dividers so that everything stays in its proper place.

Tip 8: Insulated Box

Tip 8 Insulated Box

Make sure the lunch box is insulated. Whether you want to keep your food cool, or even hot (such as in a Thermos), make sure the package you use has proper insulation. Food is always tastier at the proper temperature, and your child is sure to notice this difference as well. Many lunch boxes, containers, thermoses, and bags have proper insulation, so be sure to invest in one that gets the job done.

If it’s a particularly hot day, even consider throwing an ice pack in the box. This will keep everything cool and fresh.

Tip 9: Variety

Be sure to mix it up! Everyone likes variety, and your kid is surely no exception. One way to do this is to pack something different every day.

Now, this doesn’t mean you can’t repeat yourself, just try to rotate between at least 3 or 4 different lunches. Whether that means different types of sandwiches, different styles of food, or different cuisines altogether, try to find a few of your child’s favourites and rotate.

It doesn’t have to be complicated, just buy a few different ingredients and mix things up. Once again, your best course of action is simply to ask your child the things they like, and rotate based on that.

Tip 10: Make ‘Em The Night Before

Finally, our last tip is to make lunches the night before. Of course, it really comes down to your preference, but we find it much easier to pack our lunches the night before. There are so many things to do in the morning already that packing lunches will simply add stress.

Set aside a time each night to prepare lunches. It only takes a few minutes, and you can leave it in the fridge and pack it in the morning. If you make this into a simple routine, you’ll be surprised how much more easy-going your mornings become.

15 Best Kids Lunch Containers for School to Summer Camp

Introduction

We all know how tough it can be to make a lunch for kids that they actually want to eat. Packing lunches is no easy task. From giving them something they enjoy, to making sure they get their fruits and vegetables, to keeping everything fresh and secure.

In this article, we’re going to cross one item off your list of worries when it comes to kids’ lunches. We’re going to be looking at lunch boxes and containers. We’ll run you through our picks for the 15 best lunch boxes for kids. We’ve made sure to include a wide variety of products in this list, so we are sure you will find something you enjoy.

OXO Goods Leakproof Lunch Container

This container is really great, because not only is it strong and leak-proof, it has multiple containers to store everything you need for your child’s lunch. It keeps foods separate, and keeps your dry foods dry. On top of that, the strong clamps keep everything secure.

If you’re looking for something a bit different from your traditional lunch box or bag, then these containers will do just great.

Bento Box

Here’s another handy container with 3 different storage compartments. The compartments keep your food separated and dry. The container itself is also strong, durable, and microwave safe.

Designed after a bento box, this is the perfect tool for packing a lunch and some sides without packing everything into separate bags or containers.

Food Storage Containers

If all you want are basic, quality containers, then here’s a great place to start. These are solid, glass containers that lock tight and prevent any leaks. They are microwave safe, and even come with inserts which break the container up into sections.

Sometimes, you just want to keep it simple. If that’s your goal, these containers are for you.

Bento Lunch Box

This is a basic option, but it might work if you are really looking for the economical alternative. These containers are quality, leak-proof, and microwave safe. They are also extremely affordable! They are reusable, and even come divided into sections so that you can easily separate your mains from your sides.

LOCK & LOCK Divided Lunch Box Container

Another no-frills choice. This is a leak-proof, microwave safe container, that has containers for a main and two sides. As it’s name implies, it locks tight to keep your food fresh and free of leaks. This is another option that won’t break the bank!

Simple Modern Bento Lunch Box for Kids

Here’s another bento lunch box, but as you can tell from it’s fun color choices, it was made specifically for kids! Not only will your kid love the fun colors (and there are several to choose from!), but you will be able to keep all the different parts of their lunch separate and fresh. No leaks to worry about, and the dividers are actually removable if you just want a simple lunch container.

DaCool Insulated Lunch Container 16oz

Here’s an option if you are looking for a lunch container for liquids, soups, stews, and the like. This thermos will keep hot meals hot throughout the day. It even has a contractable spoon which fits right in the lid! If you’re planning on sending your kid to school with a hot meal, this is your best bet.

NomBox Leak Proof Stainless Steel Food Storage Container

The NomBox is a stainless steel container that is great for simple packed lunches. This is great if you are looking for an eco-friendly choice, as you can avoid the toxic materials. The NomBox also has removable mini-containers for all your sides, so you can pack your lunch how you want.

HANGO Insulated Lunch Bag

Moving on from lunch containers, here’s a great option if you want a zippable lunch bag for your kids. The HANGO bag has quality, insulated design, and is more than big enough to fit a hefty lunch. The carrying strap makes it easy for your child to lug it around all day.

OPUX Premium Lunch Box

The OPUX lunch box sure has a lot going for it. It is quite large, well-insulated, and has front and side pockets. This lunch box has everything you need to pack a hefty lunch for your child, and it will keep everything fresh and cool. It’s designed to be big enough so that you can pack individual containers into the bag, keeping everything separate.

FlowFly Kid’s Lunch Box

The FlowFly lunch box is your standard lunch box. It zips up, is well-insulated, and has a convenient carrying strap. Your kids will love the cool designs, there are over 15 to choose from! If you want to send your kid to school in style, then let them pick out their favourite.

Skip Hop Kids Insulated Lunch Box

These ones are really cool! Designed to look like different animals, your child will probably love the different varieties! As a lunch box it’s pretty standard. It zips up, keeps everything fresh, and has different compartments for different items. As a bonus, this one is highly affordable!

If your child is keen on the design, this could be a great choice.

Momcozy Kids Lunch Box

Here’s another basic zip-up lunch box. It is fully insulated, zips up, and has room for a sizable lunch. Your kids will love the cool dinopattern. At under $10, this one is very affordable also!

GoPrene Lunch Bag

Here’s a cool design for a lunch bag. This one is actually designed to be carried more like a bag than a lunch box. It still zips up and is fully insulated, but is easier and more comfortable to carry around due to its design. It also folds flat when empty, making it easier to store.

Thermos Funtainer 10 oz

Lastly, another option if you really want to keep hot food hot. The Thermos Funtainer comes from the trusted Thermos brand, and this one comes in all sorts of cool colors that your child will love. Its basic design keeps food fresh, and is small enough to fit in all sorts of lunch bags.

Best Lunch Boxes for Toddlers – super cute and FUNCTIONAL

Sending your toddler to school or daycare for the first time is exciting, and your parenting skills are probably going into overdrive. You’ll be doing everything you can to make sure that your little one will have the best first day ever, including a brand-new, super cute, but also extremely functional lunch box for toddlers.

If you’re packing your toddler’s lunches for daycare or preschool, check out some of my favorite toddler lunch boxes that you and your child will both love!

Bentgo Kids Lunch Box

We love the Bentgo Box for picnics, taking snacks to siblings’ extracurricular activities or anytime we’re on the go! Compartment lunch boxes cut down on plastic waste while also having a smaller sized lunch box for little eaters. The Bentgo Kids Lunch Box is far superior to your average compartment lunch box because each compartment is sized for perfect portions for children.

The Bentgo lunch box is designed specifically for kids 3-7 years old and even has drop-proof, rubber-coated edges for durability. Your toddler’s food will stay fresh and mess-free even on bumpy bus rides when you use the Bentgo Lunch box. One of the best things about this lunch box, however, is the removable trays that allow you to pop the food into the microwave easily to reheat if you desire. The trays are also dishwasher safe and clean up easily by hand as well.

Pros:

  • Easy-open latches
  • Compartments for easy food portioning
  • Reduces plastic waste for baggies
  • Removable trays
  • Slim design
  • Durable
  • Dishwasher and microwave safe
  • Comes in three fun colors—purple, blue and green
  • Leakproof
  • BPA-free materials
  • 2-year warranty and customer support through Bentgo

Cons:

  • The Bentgo Box doesn’t keep food hot or cold. You’ll need to pack the Bento Box in an additional thermal lunch box if you need to keep food at a specific temperature

The Bentgo Kids Lunch Box is an excellent choice for parents who are focusing on portions and meeting all five food groups during their lunch meals. The Bentgo Box is not thermal however so if your child’s lunch needs to be kept cold, this option may not be the best for you.

Skip Hop Zoo Insulated Lunch Box

Kids love animals, and parents love the Skip Hop Zoo Insulated Lunch Box. You can choose from a cute red fox, adorable puppy, or a precious raccoon among all sorts of other creatures. These lunch boxes have friendly faces, and that are bright and colorful, and matching zipper-pulls too for ease of use.

These insulated lunch boxes are sized perfectly for kids or moms carrying snacks for toddlers on the go. The bag is soft sided and has a roomy compartment that can hold sandwiches, drinks, and snacks, and even has a mesh interior pocket for an icepack, utensils, or lunch money.

Pros:

  • Cute fun designs that are gender-neutral
  • Wipe clean interior
  • Insulated to keep food and drinks cold
  • Top handle that can clip onto a backpack and is adjustable
  • BPA and Phthalate free
  • Mesh interior pocket
  • Large roomy compartment
  • Interior name tag
  • More than 20 animal options to choose from
  • Matching bags, cups, and other accessories

Cons:

  • Only one compartment so food can get smooshed if not packed in hard sized containers

We love the Skip Hop Zoo insulated lunch boxes because they’re very well made, super cute, and come in lots of gender-neutral designs that will make you want to collect them all! These lunch boxes are also part of a much larger line of zoo animal accessories for kids, including backpacks that your children will love. The Bentgo Box mentioned above also fits easily into this lunch box if you want to use both together to minimize food being smashed.

PackIt Freezable Lunch Bag

The PackIt lunch boxes are made from patented technology that includes freezing gel built into the walls of the bag to ensure that your toddler’s food stays fresh and safe to eat. You’ll never need a separate icepack to keep this lunch box cool which leaves plenty of space for sandwiches, snacks, and even a thermos.

The PackIt lunch box folds down flat so you can stick it into the freezer the night before and the zip-top closure locks in the cold so that your child’s food tastes great and stays cool. There’s also an adjustable buckle handle that clips onto bookbags, strollers, or totes. You’ll never have to worry about toxins either since the PackIt brand only uses nontoxic poly canvas and a food-safe lining that’s also water-resistant.

Pros:

  • Made from 100% nontoxic materials
  • Freezable gel permanently built into the bag for ultimate cooling
  • Food safe interior
  • Foldable design to lay flat in the freezer
  • Zip-top closure
  • Wipe clean interior
  • Dozens of color and design options
  • Buckle handle
  • Roomy interior
  • Zip pocket on the front for lunch money, utensils

Cons:

  • Only one interior compartment so if you don’t back the lunch box well you risk smashing the food inside
  • Not useful for keeping food hot

PackIt is a great brand and the original inventor of the freezable lunch box. These bags are designed in California, and PackIt makes more than just toddler lunch boxes. There are freezable traveler lunch boxes, soft-sided coolers, and even totes with the patented freezing technology. We love that Packit offers an enormous variety of colors and style options for their toddler lunch boxes.

Amersun Kids Lunch Bag

If you’ve been looking for a soft-sided lunch box with more than one compartment that is padded and durable enough to withstand your toddler, the Amersun Kids Lunch Bag is the perfect choice. The is a mesh compartment on the inside of the lip, a zipper compartment on the outside, a large interior compartment, as well as a mesh drink holder on the side. The handle is firm, adjustable, rip-proof and can buckle onto book bags or strollers with ease.

Pros:

  • Multiple compartments
  • Not too big or bulky, but has outside pockets for an extra snack or a drink
  • Water-resistant and dirt-proof oxford fabric material
  • Easy to clean interior and exterior
  • Stays warm or cool
  • Dual zipper with wide open-top design
  • Strong, nylon handles
  • Weighs only 8.8 ounces

Cons

  • Not Leak Proof

The Amersun Kids Lunch Bag is perfect for traveling with toddlers who need lots of snacks or sending your little one off to school with for the first time. You’ll never have to worry about the durability of this lunch box for toddlers, but be careful, because this lunch box is not leakproof. Any spills that may happen inside the lunch box are not guaranteed to stay inside.

No matter what your needs are for your toddler’s lunch box, one of these are sure to be the perfect fit. You can also use a few of them for yourself if needed. They are also all affordable, practical, functional, and cute!

More Lunch Packing Supplies for Toddlers:

Best Bento Box for Toddlers

Bento Boxes are reusable Japanese-style lunch boxes that are perfect for toddlers because they keep food separated without having to use wasteful plastic bags or containers. Bento boxes are the most environmentally friendly lunchboxes and great for families that love packing fresh foods and homemade meals for their toddlers.

Check out our recommendations for the best Bento style lunch boxes for toddlers.

Bentgo Kids Brights Box

The Bentgo Kids lunchboxes are leak-proof with five compartments and perfect for kids age three to seven. The Bentgo Kids lunchbox is BPA free and made from food-safe materials. What makes this lunchbox perfect for toddlers is the durable, drop-proof construction with rubber-coated edges.

Pros:

  • Leak-proof technology
  • Durable construction
  • 2-year warranty
  • Kid-friendly latches
  • One main compartment, and four sides designed for child-size portions
  • Bentgo supports the Feed the Children charity
  • Many colors to choose from

Cons

  • The Bentgo Box does not keep food cold. This box needs to go inside a lunch box with an ice pack
  • Some people have trouble with the latches snapping off

The Bentgo Box is designed with a toddler’s appetite in mind and is an excellent choice for parents of children who are picky eaters and don’t want their food to touch. The tray insert is dishwasher friendly and is made from easy to clean materials that are BPA free and non-toxic.

Fun Life Bento Lunch Box

This five compartment Bento lunch box is perfect for kids, toddlers, or adults. Each portion compartment is individually removable and made from FDA food safe and BPA free materials. This box encourages food variety in little ones, and they can even help choose which foods to put in the containers if you want to make mealtime more self-directed by your child. We also love the leakproof design with four clips on each side for extra security and a tight-fitting lid.

Pros:

  • 5 Removable compartments
  • Microwave safe
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Refrigerator safe
  • Leakproof design
  • Durable construction
  • Includes insulated lunch box bag
  • Rubberized edges

Cons:

  • Insulated bag keeps food at temperature for 2-4 hours. You’ll need an icepack to ensure food stays cool longer than that
  • Only microwaveable safe for up to three minutes
  • The lid is not microwaveable
  • Food can stain the compartments

This bento box is great for toddlers because the cups are removable pick means you can tailor the lunch that goes into the box for your child’s appetite. You can even choose just to use two cups which would make a three-portion meal design. You’ll have to be careful with microwaving this bento box, however. While the product info says it is microwave safe, the lid is not, and there are limitations for how long you can heat the plate for.

Ultimate Bento Box

We love this Bento Box because the containers are moveable and include a built-in removable icepack, so you don’t ever have to worry about your bento box staying cold. The lunch box is also 100 percent leakproof, microwave and dishwasher safe. You’ll have several color options with each option including a two-color design. The box is divided into three compartments with two lids. The middle compartment is divided for two portions of just over 8 ounces each, and two removable compartments are in the bottom.

Pros:

  • Leakproof with four easy-open latches
  • Four removable compartments
  • Three tiers
  • Built-in removable icepack
  • Microwave safe
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Food grade safe materials, BPA free
  • Satisfaction guarantee

Cons:

  • Can be difficult for toddlers to assemble if they are eating lunch alone
  • No handle

The Ultimate Bento Box is great for anyone in the family to use and is made from durable, food-safe materials that parents can trust. The leak-proof design is perfect for busy kids on the go, but we wish this bento box had a handle, especially since the built-in icepack means you don’t necessarily need an additional lunch bag to transport the Ultimate Bento Box in.

OmieBox Bento Box with Thermos

If you want your child to have a mix of hot and cold foods at lunch, the OmieBox is an excellent choice because the three compartments allow for two different temperature zones. There is also a thermos insert that allows hot food to be packed inside easy. This box uses BPA free plastic, food-grade materials, and stainless steel to ensure that your food stays insulated, no matter the temperature. When you don’t use the thermos insert, space becomes a fourth compartment big enough for a sandwich.

Pros:

  • Hot and cold foods together in one bento box
  • Three to four compartments
  • Removable thermos inserts
  • Easy to clean
  • Removable rubber seals
  • Replacement seals available
  • Handle

Cons:

  • Insulated compartments keep food cool and fresh but not cold

We love this bento box because you ensure your toddler has something warm to eat at lunch even when it’s lunch from home. This lunchbox for toddlers also has a handle and can space to fit an icepack if you want to keep food cooler than the insulated compartments allow. The seals on the OmieBox do wear out with use, but rather than replace the entire lunchbox, and parents can order additional removable seals as replacements.

Eco-Friendly Bento Box

If the reason you choose the bento-style lunchbox is to save plastic, this bento box by Eco-Life Home Design is a great choice for your toddler. The box is leakproof, freezer and microwave safe and includes four compartments for foods and one tiny compartment for a sauce. The box consists of a reusable set of utensils, and everything is made from wheat fiber and BPA free plastic. The box is designed to break down in a compost facility and is also super easy to clean.

Pros:

  • 70% Wheat Fiber makes this a very eco-friendly design
  • Created to break down in compost
  • Includes fork and spoon
  • Four compartments and sauce compartment
  • Removable clasps for easy cleaning
  • Leakproof
  • One year manufacturer warranty

Cons:

  • No insulation
  • No handle
  • Bland design

This bento box is FDA approved and perfect for the environmentally conscious family. We also love that this company partners with One Tree Planted to plant a tree for each of their bento boxes sold. Your toddler might not like that there aren’t bright colors or characters on their bento box.

Bento boxes are a great way to promote a healthy variety of foods and great portion control. There are many different styles of bento boxes that could work for your toddler, but we are sure that one that you read about above will be the perfect fit for your child.

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Feeding Your Kids: Do Insulated Lunch Bags Keep Food Warm?

Do Insulated Lunch Bags Keep Food Warm

There’s no question that children are amongst some of the pickiest eaters, especially when they’re in their younger years.

It might feel like a headache at the time because they have no qualms about telling you, but as a parent, you likely want to give your kid what they want.

So, what do you do if they say that they don’t want cold lunches at school and there’s no microwave available? Do insulated lunch bags keep food warm enough to satisfy your little one? Do you need to invest in a thermos and feed them nothing but soup?We’ve gathered a few tips and tricks to help you keep your kid’s happy with warm meals.

Food Keeper Options

Food Keeper Options

When cooking a hot meal for your kid’s lunch, the first thing you want to do is ensure that it’s something that can be eaten while cold, too. The last thing you want is for your kid to get sick because of eating something that should be hot when it’s too cold. Once you’ve made that decision, it’s time to prepare.

Thermos

There are plenty of thermos options available on the market so that you can keep your kid’s food warm until it’s time to eat. Food such as soups, pasta, and stews can be added to the thermos to give them a warm lunch.

If you go with this option, remember to preheat the thermos with boiling water for ten minutes, as it helps keep it warm until lunchtime. Once you’ve heated up the food, you can add it to the thermos and seal it tight, so no heat escapes.

Insulated Lunch Bags

Over the years, insulated lunch bags have become increasingly popular, and some even include gel packs that can be heated at the base. Many also include dividers for hot and cold food. If you choose to go with an insulated lunch bag, you still need to prepare the food to the recommended temperature adequately, and then reheat it before packing.Whatever food you choose, wrap it in aluminum foil after it’s been cooked to seal in the warmth. You can add an additional layer of insulation by wrapping it in a tea towel, napkins, or paper towel.

All About Insulated Lunch Bags

Whether you’ve been packing lunches for years or you’re new to the concept, you’ve undoubtedly asked the infamous “Do insulated lunch bags keep food warm?” question, and the answer is “Yes.” Plastic or metal lunch boxes don’t provide the proper amount of insulation to keep food hot or cold, and plastic and brown bags are even worse. Unless you or your kid will eat the food right away, you need an insulated lunch bag to retain the heat long enough, so it’s still warm three to five hours later.Layers are incorporated in insulated lunch bags, and they’re the key to everything. Typically, each bag has an outer layer, an inner layer, and then a layer of insulation between the two.

All About Insulated Lunch Bags

You can purchase the lunch bags in a variety of materials such as vinyl and plastic, but it’s the middle insulation layer that’s the essential part and is usually made out of a type of foam. On the other hand, inner layers are traditionally waterproof and made from foil, plastic, or vinyl.While the primary purpose of an insulated lunch bag is to keep your prepared food hot or cold, it’s still recommended that you use a gel pack to help the process. Some lunch bags come with them, but if it doesn’t, they are affordable and easy to use.Heated gel packs have a flexible gel inside of their plastic pouch and can be heated in the microwave. They are built to hold temperatures, so it helps keep the food inside warm.

Extra Tips

  • Make the food too hot to eat since the extra heat helps with keeping the food warm during the hours between preparation and consumption.
  • Do not open the thermos once it’s been sealed because that will allow the heat to escape.
  • Wrap a tea towel around the thermos to add additional insulation. This also helps with separating hot containers and cold food such as juice boxes and fruit cups.
  • Add a heated gel pack or bottle to the insulated lunch bag to add extra warmth.
  • Always ensure hot and cold food are kept separated to the best of your ability.
  • Make sure that perishable food gets prepared at their recommended temperature.
  • Test out your insulated lunch bag by preparing your own lunch and seeing how long it remains warm.

FINAL VERDICT

Using insulated lunch bags to keep food warm is the most recommended way of doing so, but you should always take additional steps to ensure that the food stays as hot as it can and for as long as it can. You can use all the information provided here to help you keep your and your kid’s lunches warm and edible. Happy eating!