I remember making my own lunches as early as first grade. Lunch typically included:
- a room-temperature Capri Sun
- a Carl Budding ham or turkey sandwich with probably 1/4 cup of mustard and no mayo (which was crazy, because I knew I put too much mustard and was anti-mayo because my brother liked mayo and whatever he liked, I couldn't like because I'm ornery like that, so I just kept eating that nasty sandwich)
- a sliced orange, which leaked orange juice all over my overly mustardy sandwich
- a fruit snack (Farleys Ninja Turtle variety), or a Swiss Cake Roll
Props to my mom for getting us to make our own lunches at the tender age of 6! Really though! That is amazing! The longer I'm a mom, the more incredible my mom becomes.
Given my nearly 30 years of experience, I've learned a few things about lunches. They can be so much more than sandwiches! Make peanut butter the main course with graham crackers, celery, and apples for dipping. Use hummus the same way. Try a wrap. Top banana or zucchini bread with cream cheese for a sweet/savory sandwich. Leftover sliders are great cold. Pack yogurt with granola and fruit. Can I also say that we love a good Thermos at our house? Fall is the perfect time to fill them up with delicious leftover casseroles, stews, and chili. More about that in the future...
But back to these lunches. They rock. I've rounded up some entrees and snacks so good the rest of the kids from all across the lunchroom will be begging to trade you for their Twinkies and PBJ. You can prep stuff the night before, or let the kids make lunch themselves in the morning. Remember, brown bagging it isn't just for kids! Pack a lunch for work, or even if you are staying home, and save the money for something worthwhile, like a great new sweater or a trip to Bora Bora. It can happen!
Bake the bread. Share the slices.
Chicken Caesar Salad Wraps from The Baker Upstairs
Ham and Cheese Biscuits from Barefeet in the Kitchen
Homemade Cheez-its from The Baker Upstairs
Apple Snack Sandwiches from Like Mother Like Daughter
Chicken Fajita Bowls from i heart naptime
Chickpea and Bean Pesto Pita Wraps from Cook with Manali
Chocolate Chip Cookie Granola Bars from The Baker Upstairs
Pennsylvania Dutch Pies from The Little Red Hen
Cheeseburger Burrito Wraps from The Kitchenarium
Healthy Homemade Lunchables from Don't Waste the Crumbs
Caramel Apple Oatmeal Cookies from Somewhat Simple
Bean, Rice, and Cheese Burritos from The Baker Upstairs
Monster Bars from The Little Red Hen