Summer flew by and the familiar sound of ‘What did you pack for my lunch today??’ will soon be heard by parents on a daily basis. Our friends at Marcia Selden Catering & Event Planning, a top caterer in Stamford, CT, are here to help ‘up your brown bag game’ with some of their creative lunch ideas that will make for some seriously happy kids.
Kiss lunch-box boredom good-bye with these easy tips and recipes:
Take an extra minute to:
Remove the bread crusts
Slice sandwiches on the diagonal or into shapes using a cookie cutter (we love puzzle piece shapes, hearts or stars)
Give kids options (think bento box style lunches)
Keep hot foods hot (with a Thermos) and cold foods cold (with a mini-ice pack)
Make lunch the night before (for your sanity and for an extra 10 minutes sleep time!)
Here are our top 5 lunch ideas for the new school year!
Take-to-School ‘Make Your Own’ Tacos
No ‘Juan’ ever said…we hate tacos!
Soooo, guess what..now your kids can take them to school in their lunchbox. They will love to play with their food and assemble the tacos on their own. A Bento Style lunchbox works best for this recipe.
6 thin slices of Grilled Chicken
2 Soft Flour Tortillas
¼ C Shredded Cheddar, Monterey Jack or Mexican Blend Cheese
2 T Salsa of your choice
2 T Guacamole
¼ cup Diced Tomatoes
½ C Shredded Lettuce
Pack the compartments with salsa, guacamole, and the additional toppings. Seal each compartment and send them off for their very own fiesta at school. We like to send a small Ziploc of crispy tortilla chips for some added crunch.
Easy Tomato Soup
You will never open a can again!
Make this super easy soup over the weekend and heat up in the AM before school to send in a Thermos. Serve with Cheddar Goldfish, or toasted Pita Chips.
1 (28-oz) can Whole Tomatoes, in juice
1 Cup Low-Sodium Chicken or Vegetable Broth
Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1 t Fresh Lemon Juice
1/4 C Cream
Puree the tomatoes and broth in a blender until smooth. Add lemon juice. Wisk in cream and season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
Pour hot soup into an air-tight thermos. Pack up this yummy, comforting soup and send your happy kids off to school. FYI, this soup freezes beautifully and makes an awesome quick weeknight dinner with a salad or grilled cheese!
BBQ Chicken Sloppy Joes
¼ C Tomatoes, chopped
½ C Rotisserie Chicken, shredded
¼ cup Carrots, shredded
2 T BBQ sauce…pick your favorite
Whole Wheat Hamburger Bun
Toss chopped tomatoes, shredded chicken, carrots and BBQ sauce together in a bowl. Voila… you’ve got your Sloppy Joe’s ready! Pack your whole wheat hamburger bun with the filling. Cut the sandwich in half for easy eating and pack that beauty up in the lunch box.
Turkey Salad Rolls
½ C Turkey, sliced
½ C Seedless Red Grapes, halved
1 T Celery, thinly sliced
1 t Mayonnaise
1 Whole Wheat Hot Dog Bun
Combine diced turkey, grapes, and mayo. Split whole wheat hot dog bun, open and fill with the turkey salad. Wrap in parchment like a cute little present. We like to write a sweet note on ours) Your kids will feel so special when they open their lunch box.
Cream Cheese, Pear & Honey Sandwich
2 T Whipped Cream Cheese
½ Pear, sliced very thin
2 slices of your choice of Bread (we like whole grain bread for this sandwich)
Spread the cream cheese on both bread slices and drizzle both with honey. Add the sliced pears and assemble the sandwich. Cut into quarters and pack it up for a sweet, healthy and delicious lunch!