With back-to-school time fast approaching, your mind might be reeling about what to pack for your child’s lunch. Maybe you’re simply looking for something different to prepare for them at home. We’ve scoured the web for some healthy lunch ideas that make lunch a time that both you and your child will look forward to again and again.
Healthline.com has a pizza recipe that cuts down on the grease and pumps up the nutrition. Several of the standard ingredients can be used, but shoot for a low-sodium tomato sauce and reduced-fat cheese. Substitute a carbohydrate-packed crust for a lean flour tortilla. Go for your typical pizza toppings of choice, such as ham or pepperoni. Finally, add some chopped veggies to really bring out the nutritious elements. You can even roll up the “pizza” like a tortilla if you’re so inclined. Not sure if it still counts as pizza at that point, but it’s good either way!
TURKEY-CHEESE PITA POCKETS
This idea from The Penny Hoarder is healthy, inexpensive, and easy: the lunch trifecta! Grab a whole wheat pita, slather it with cream cheese, and throw in some turkey slices (ham works well, too). Add some cucumber slices or spinach leaves. Round out the meal with some fruit on the side, and you have a healthy meal for your child that took all of 3 minutes to prepare.
HEALTHIER PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY
We’d be remiss if we didn’t include the classic PB&J. With a few healthy substitutions recommended by kidshealth.org, nutrition goes up without sacrificing the tried and true taste kids love. Plain old white bread? Shoot for whole wheat instead. Regular peanut butter? Give soy nut butter a try for added health benefits. The usual hard-to-spread blobs of sugary jelly? Substitute for 100% fruit spread. You can even substitute the spread entirely for banana slices drizzled in honey. It’s every bit as simple to prepare as the classic with a healthy punch.
The variety of lunches you can prepare for your child is staggering. Even making a few small adjustments to a commonly-prepared meal can make it seem fresh and new. Instill in your children a desire for healthy eating while they’re young, and they’ll likely be eating healthy lunches on into adulthood.