Back to School Doesn't Have to be a Hassle: Prepare Healthier Lunches with Less Stress

Photo by: Shape Magazine

Back to school season is here, which means that it’s time to get back to preparing kid’s lunches (and your own). Making lunches may seem like a simple task, but it can get tedious when you’re doing it every day. That’s why we wrote this blog to make it easier to prepare healthy lunches for you and your kids!

Tip 1: Prepare in advance
While this may seem like a no-brainer, there’s more than one way to prepare your meals in advance. Some people meal prep for the whole week, for the day before, etc. Our meal prep tip looks a little different, though. 

Make a menu for the week with what foods you are going to pack and prepare so you can buy those foods/ingredients at the store. This will help you avoid buying what you see at the store and stick to your list, which saves you money too. 

Here’s a bonus tip: if some of your recipes require less common ingredients, try to make other recipes that contain those ingredients that week. Instead of using some ingredients once, this will allow you to be less wasteful and take advantage of new recipes.

Tip 2: Involve your kids in lunch prep

Involving your kids in the lunch prep process will help them learn responsibility and work with you to create lunch that they want to eat. There’s even more than one way to get your kids involved. 

The first way is to take them to the store with you and while you may already have your pre-made list, let them have some say to what you’re buying for their lunches. So, while avoiding the candy and junk food aisles, give your kids some autonomy into choosing healthy snacks they would like to eat. 

The second way is to have them help you make lunch. Let them pick out a snack or food item in some food groups to make a well-balanced meal that they’ll feel more motivated to eat. After all, they helped create it!

Tip 3: Make your own snacks/cut down on processed foods

To encourage your kids to eat better, try to cut down on processed foods and encourage them to eat more fruits, veggies, nuts and more for their snacks. If you find yourself wanting to recreate some of your kid’s favorite snacks, look for recipes that make those snacks out of healthier ingredients.
Photo by: Beaming Baker

Many snacks like trail mix, granola bars and popcorn can be homemade (and healthier) than buying the processed versions. Some recipes can be found here!

Tip 4: Create a balanced diet with all pieces of the food pyramid

Forming you and your child’s meal with the food pyramid in mind can help create a lunch with all the right nutrients. An example of this type of lunch could look like:

  •  A sandwich (on whole grain bread) with any type of meat and cheese you want to cover three pieces of the pyramid 
  • Carrots and hummus
  •  Banana with peanut butter for added protein
  • Glass of water

Tip 5: Encourage drinking water

Water is the best drink for you and one that we should all be drinking more of, especially our children. Many kids prefer sugary drinks like soda and juice, but in order to inspire more healthy behaviors as they grow up, encourage them to drink more water. 

One way to make water more fun and tastier is to add fresh fruit like lemons or strawberries. Each fruit/water combo comes with benefits to your body and keeps you healthier. 

Photo by: Taste of Home

  • Lemon: Aids with bloating and fluid retention
  • Strawberries: Boosts immunity 
  • Pineapple: Aids in digestion 
  • Cucumber: Helps cool inflammatory responses in the body and hydrates

Encouraging your children to eat healthy and making lunch-prep easier for you is a win-win! We hope these tips will make the upcoming school year easier and give you the chance to care for your body. After all, we want this to encourage you to create a better lunch for yourself too. 

Thanks for reading! Let us know your favorite tip or if you have any tips we missed, comment on the blog. We want to reach as many people as we can with our content, so if you could share this post, we greatly appreciate it!


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