3 School Lunch Solutions for Picky Eaters
At both of our homes, we have some picky eaters…some really picky eaters…which can make meal times a challenge. Especially lunch…when they are away at school and we aren’t with them to make sure they are getting enough to eat to fuel them for the rest of the day. Which is why each of our children take “home lunches”. However, each of our children are picky in different ways and so all of their lunches look different (even though many of the components are exactly the same). In every lunch we like to include their water bottle, a fruit, a grain, a treat and a protein. They all just need to be packaged/presented/given to them in a way that they will eat it!
So today we have three types of lunches that we make for our kids to take with them to school. Here is a list of our key components:
*Water Bottle: Although not pictured each of our kids like water and it’s good for them…they need to drink as much of it as possible. Plus it is inexpensive, always on hand, easy to clean up, and using a water bottle is good for the environment.
*Fruit: Grapes, small pears, clementines and banana halves are our favorite choices for all of our picky eaters.
*Grain: Bread usually serves as the grain BUT one child in particular will always choose a granola bar over bread every day of the week. Other great choices are pretzels, crackers, popcorn and even pita bread (surprisingly I have one that LOVES pita bread).
*Protein: Right now our protein of choice is NATURAL CHOICE® Honey Deli Ham or Oven Roasted Turkey. It’s great because our kids will eat it and they like it. But we, as moms, like it for several other reasons: It is 100% natural and has no added preservatives…the ingredients list is clean and simple (like we think it should be)…deli meats are not preserved with artificial ingredients and added preservatives like other brands may. It is also affordable, which is nice, especially when we are each sending several children a day off with a homemade lunch. The NATURAL CHOICE® brand is a national brand so you should be able to find their deli meats at your local grocery store (which is where we buy ours). Now that you have our list of ingredients…here is how we change things up.
#1 School Lunch Solutions for Picky Eaters. The “Keep ‘Em Separated” Lunch We have a child who doesn’t like his food to mix with or touch other food so The “Keep ‘Em Separated” Lunch is the perfect solution. A shallow plastic container with a lid and cupcake liners make the perfect little portion sizes and it’s just plain cute. And it’s a fun way to eat everything in their own little spots.
#2 School Lunch Solutions for Picky Eaters. The “Party on a Stick” Lunch We have another child who thinks eating is boring…a complete waste of time so we are always looking for a way to entice her to eat. And right now the “Party on a Stick” is a great solution. I can mix up what’s on her meat and cheese kabobs OR I can pack up all the components and let her create her own kabobs. It’s fun and it’s different and most importantly…she will eat them!
#3 School Lunch Solutions for Picky Eaters. The “Mini Meal” We have a child who only will eat food in small portions. Large food items like whole sandwiches, hamburgers, hot dogs, etc. seem overwhelming. BUT if we can serve them to her in small (mini) portions she will gobble them up! And so most of her meals are served in mini portions. (Like these mini “sandwich sliders” which can be eaten in just a few of her tiny bites. They are made from dollar rolls from the grocery bakery, a slice of cheese and NATURAL CHOICE® Honey Deli Ham.) It isn’t always easy discovering what our picky eaters will eat but with a few wholesome and affordable ingredients, like NATURAL CHOICE® Honey Deli Ham and Oven Roasted Turkey, and some creative packaging we can send our kids off to school knowing that they have a lunch that is not only good for them but that they will actually eat!