Since today is the first day of school I thought I would share how I like to get things lined up for preparing school lunches. I find a little bit of prepping ahead makes it much easier to get those lunches packed first thing in the morning.
As you probably already know (if you have followed my blog for awhile) we use insulated lunch bags and I have an assortment of plastic containers, spoons and forks, and drink bottles on hand to fill and reuse. I also keep reusable ice packs in the freezer.
On Sunday morning I like to prep for the week ahead. I get out the big bowl that holds all of our washed and clean containers and bottles.
I like to fill the bottles with milk, sometimes flavored milk and juice. My girls also like to have a water bottle to take to school. I usually buy one case of water bottles a year and they wash and refill them.
I prepare small containers with gelatin, fruit (or a combo of both), applesauce, etc. I pull from the freezer any lunchmeat I plan to use. I usually plan one PB & J each week.
For a change of pace from sandwiches I like to make a salad or a pasta salad for them to have. I'll boil the pasta and put that together with veggies, sliced olives, some chicken or ham and a little homemade Italian salad dressing. Another salad I make is one of our favorites - Chinese Chicken Salad.
I like to hard boil some eggs to have on hand. Bananas and fresh fruit as well.
I like to keep individual packages of chips on hand too, but they aren’t a daily thing. Only a couple times a week as they are more of a treat than a staple.
I also like to bake up a batch of cookies or brownies. Cupcakes or sliced banana bread is nice too. I enjoy baking and usually can come up with a variety of yummy and fairly healthy desserts. Once they are cooled I package them up as well. I also like to freeze extras for later to use later.
Each day when the kids get home ice packs go back in the freezer and containers are washed, dried and put back into the big bowl. About midweek, usually Wednesday evening, I'll refill some drink bottles, as I don't have enough for all of us for the full week, and we carry on.
|I sent my high schooler to band camp with a PB & J cut up like she was|
in kindergarten. She loved it and said it made her laugh.
Do you have any great tricks for getting lunches prepared? What are some of your favorite items to pack? I'd love some more ideas!