Lunch is actually our very easiest meal around here. My kids are pretty laid back and will eat just about anything at lunch time. Keep in mind that I’m a SAHM homeschooling mom, so I am feeding a 5.5 year old, an almost 4 year old, and a 15 month old.
Our meals look something like this: Meat, Dairy, Fruit, Veggie, Junk. lol
If we have a good quantity of leftovers, I love to heat them up for the kids. Pasta is great as a leftover item, especially if it’s of the mac n cheese variety! I know that a lot of whole fooders are going to hate me by the end of this post, but my life just is what it is here. 😉 I add in cut up hot dogs to mac n cheese *shhh* because it’s my son’s favorite. So this meal might be something like mac n cheese, hot dog, fruit (apple or pear slices perhaps?), sliced carrots or some veggie chips, and then milk or juice or water to drink.
I don’t know about you, but I try to make my kids drink water as much as possible. Not only is it a million times cheaper, but it doesn’t add in a bunch of sugar to their diet. However, I will give them juice if our meal is lacking a fruit and we’re out or if they are really low on fruit/veggies for the day. I love the juices that are made from fruit and veggie juice. I appreciate that they’re not just apple juice or something so so sweet! The kids love them too.
Back to lunch ideas….
Sometimes I just give the kids straight up meat (lunch meat, leftover chicken, etc), cheese (either string cheese, slices, or cubed from a large block of it), some goldfish, some fruit slices, a few things of celery or cucumber, and water… and call it a day. I do occasionally give them something like fruit snacks or a cookie or peanut butter crackers. It just depends on my mood!
Even when we have a frozen pizza for lunch (which isn’t TOO terribly often), I still make sure to load them up with fruits and veggies on the side. My kids really do like them and I hope they continue on that path! My daughter really loves salad, both big kids love broccoli, and everyone loves sliced fruit of all kids (especially apples and kiwi!).
Nutrition is important to me and my family, but so is my sanity and being practical. Do I love them having whole, fresh foods? Absolutely! Does it happen every meal? Usually at least 1/2 of it is very wholesome, the rest … well, usually good but I always have some kind of convenience food in there! What I love is that, no matter what I put in front of them at lunchtime, they are always extremely excited to eat lunch and just gobble it right up! Lunch is the meal they eat the best at.
What lunches are hits in your family? Is there something your kids want to eat every single meal?