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Bun In The Oven: Back-To-School – Kid-Friendly Lunch Box Ideas

By BIANCA CARTER

Thank goodness school is back in session! Whew, is it just me, or does summer feel like the longest time ever?  

Sure, we all love a little vacation and family time. And the weather is fabulous, especially if you live by the beach, but the kids are just so bored a lot of the time. My kids hang out at the community park and playground and at the beach every day, but gees, even that gets a little mundane.

However, there are parts of back-to-school that I don’t really care for.

Shopping for new everything. Packing interesting enough food choices. You know, the things they actually eat and not toss…total mommy issues!

Here are few ideas

that my kiddies actually 

like in their lunch box:

• Grapes and cheddar 

I chop white grapes in half and cube up some medium cheddar to pile in a small container. You can also take a toothpick and stack these like a kebab, but only for the bigger kids. Toddlers shouldn’t play with toothpicks for many reasons;no need to expand on this point.

• Cream cheese and basil pinwheels

These things are so cute, and so fast and easy to whip together. Take a flour tortilla (or spinach; they like the green) and spread cream cheese all over the tortilla, leaving a 1/2 inch around the edges. Then take store bought pesto (or the homemade one if you’re a badass mama) and spread a table spoon over the cream cheese. Roll it up into a cylinder shaped roll and cut into inch rounds. You can also make these pinwheels with anything else you can think of – ham and cheese or marinara sauce, and mozzarella and pepperoni are other yummy options.

• Pita pockets

Take a whole pita and cut it in half, layer it with hummus or cream cheese and leave the fix-ins on the side so that the kids can assemble them themselves. Include tomato, spinach, lettuce and turkey on the side. My girlfriend’s daughter loves to create her own sandwiches with pita bread; it’s the only way she’ll actually eat it.  Whatever it takes, right?

• Apples and raisins

Dice up a small red apple, either peeled or with the skin on. Grab a handful of raisins and combine together in a small container. Super sweet!

• Egg salad rice cakes

OK, some kids like egg salad and some don’t. One week my daughter likes it, and the other week she doesn’t. No clue why she’s so finicky!

 If you don’t like the smell or your kids don’t either, try a vegan egg salad recipe; you can find it online. It’s supper yummy, sans scent! (Psst...add avocado for a more adult snack). I use the lightly salted rice cakes, but you can also use the white cheddar.

• Bow tie pasta with butter and parm

Who hasn’t tried this recipe, right? I think kids like the simple stuff; the simpler, the better. This is pretty basic, but it’s also pretty yummy. The Parmesan cheese sticks to the butter and the pasta, and it slightly melts so you have the perfect bite. This is a good recipe to try if you can’t get your kids to eat a thing. Boil the pasta, drain, add a healthy amount of butter and toss in a handful of grated Parmesan cheese. No need to be precise; just toss it all in and taste!

Happy back to school! Love and hugs!

• Bianca Carter is a certified lactation counsellor and founder of Bun in the Oven.

For more information, e-mail her at info@babybunintheoven.com. Follow BITO on Facebook at babybunintheoven, and check out the BITO Blog every Monday & Thursday at http://babybunintheoven.com.

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