This post is sponsored by Coles
Packing the kids a healthy lunchbox doesn’t take too much time and effort. The biggest tip is to plan ahead, similar to meal planning the family dinner, here are a few benefits:
- BE MORE EFFICIENT – This will stop you standing at the fridge or pantry each morning wondering what to pack in the lunch box. Planning will also help to create a balanced and nutritional lunchbox. When planning don’t forget to take into consideration left over dinners.
- SAVE TIME – By planning ahead and writing all lunch needs on your grocery list you with have everything on hand and enough for a week of lunches.
- SAVE MONEY – Buying only what you put on the shopping list will prevent impulse buys and also prevent food waste.
You can find some great healthy lunchbox ideas here.
Whilst I don’t have kids with food allergies I do get asked often for allergy friendly school lunchbox ideas, with many of the communities children have different allergies, from nuts, dairy, gluten and more. I can understand that this must be hard, especially trying to create variety for your child as they can’t simple pack a lot of the pre-packaged foods, cheese sticks, a Vegemite sandwiches, savoury crackers just to name a few. I asked a friend who struggles with this for some of her tips, they were:
- Pack healthy snacks like fresh fruit and vegetables
- Pack left over dinner
- For those allergic to dairy, try soy alternatives
- There are a few gluten free bread and wrap options available, fill with salad and sliced meat
- If you have time make your own cookies, muffins etc so you can omit the items your child is allergic too, ie omit nuts and use fruit instead.
- If your finding it hard to create variety, ask the kids what they do and don’t like, they are more likely to eat what you pack them
- Don’t limit yourself just to the health food aisle at the supermarket for allergy friendly food. You may find other choices throughout the aisles that will suit your childs allergies.
You can find some great healthy recipes for kids here at Coles, they also include allergy friendly recipes which can help when packing the kids lunch boxes.
Here are a few lunch boxes I have put together, not for a specific allergy, but to give you some inspiration for ideas and choices:
MORNING TEA: carrot sticks, baby cucumber, cherry tomatoes and potato stix (dairy free – found in health food aisle) with hommus dip.
LUNCH: grain square (gluten free – found in biscuit aisle) with Vegemite, banana loaf (gluten free – found in bread aisle) and a banana.
this lunchbox can be found here.
MORNING TEA: Watermelon, popcorn (gluten free – found in chip aisle), apricot coconut slice (gluten free – found in health food aisle), Berry Frugo’s balls (gluten free – found in health food aisle) and sultanas (found in baking aisle).
LUNCH: homemadechicken and corn fritattas with baby cucumber and carrot sticks.
When planning what food to put into your kids lunchboxes, you can go online at Coles to help find some inspiration. Check out their Healthy Living page here.