Packed Lunches for Kids

How to Easily Package Lunches and Snacks for Busy Kids

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While photography is my career, being a mother is a full time job, and is far more important than photography. Between going to school, figure skating, gymnastics, Russian lessons, swimming lessons, and playdates, my daughter has a packed schedule, so I do as well. An issue I’ve always ran into is feeding her- kids are constantly hungry, picky, and messy. Especially my daughter, who is usually out and about from 5 in the morning to 6 at night, she has a big appetite and no time to savor a home-cooked meal. Even at school, there’s no time to eat a large lunch, as she only has 20 minutes to eat her lunch. With this, I still want her to enjoy a home cooked meal with a balanced nutrition, but have it easily accessible and quick. However, I’ve found a couple different ways to improve my daughter’s snacking and lunches with trying different storage techniques.

Lunch containers I prefer to use

Slim ice packs for lunch boxes

Leak proof kids lunch box

Insulated bento lunch box

Soft lunch bag

Insulated lunchbox tote

Ice pack for lunch box

Plastic utensils for kids

Kids water bottle

Over the summer, I’ve done lots of experimenting with different foods and packaging to figure out what’s the best for my daughter’s busy schedule. I always try to keep her lunches healthy but also easy to eat, so foods like carrots and cucumbers are perfect for her snacks. However, kids tend to be very picky, especially with healthy foods, so healthy snacks tend to vary from child to child. I also always want to package some protein and carbs into the meal, so I always include crackers, a slice of fresh bread, or some goldfish and some type of meat and cheese into her meals. It’s also important to include things like fresh fruits and veggies, so I always make sure to always pack one of those. Making a balanced meal that’s also easy for kids to eat is a challenge, but I’ve found an easy way to package the foods that is perfect for any busy kid.

An issue my daughter usually runs into for snacks and meals is that it’s hard to access multiple containers for just one meal. Using a bento-box style lunch fixes this issue by having lots of different compartments to fit many different foods in a small box. The flat bento box I use has 4 different compartments, with a small round compartment in the middle that you can use for different sauces or liquid foods like ketchup or other dips. This lunch box is air-tight, so everything inside stays fresh easily. When packing her lunchbox, I still like to put a small ice pack near the lunch box to keep it cool during the summer, or when we’re traveling. The lunchbox is also very easy for kids to handle, as it is opened with 2 small latches on the side, so it stays air-tight while also being easy to open and close, which is important on the road. The top is hinged, so you don’t have to worry about losing the lid, like you would with tupperware. This makes this bento box perfect for school lunches, since kid’s lunches are very short, and they don’t have a lot of time to open and close separate containers.

Recipe ideas for kids lunch box

Zucchini Cakes

Simple Banana Bread with Walnuts

Swedish Pancakes

Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Peanut Butter Cookies

Blueberry Muffins with White Ganache

Spicy Jalapeno Cornbread Muffins

This is the most convenient way to package food for my daughter, and she loves using it. It’s easy to use, keeps food accessible and fresh, and easily fits into a backpack or lunch bag. Cleaning it is very easy, as all you need to do is wash it with soapy water and a brush or soap.

When we’re out for dinner, I always try to package more food to eat. However, my daughter doesn’t quite enjoy having the same thing she had for lunch, which is why I use a stackable thermos for warmer foods. The thermos is the same as the bento box, but instead of it being packed together, the contents are stacked on top of eachother. This thermos is a bit smaller than most large thermoses, but can still fit a good amount of food in it and keep it warm for a while. This thermos is good for soup or rice, as it has multiple layers to fit a whole dinner meal in it. Though it is a bit harder to handle for kids so it’s not perfect for eating on the go, it’s still a good substitute for a normal dinner at home. The thermos is very durable since it is metal, and it’s very easy to clean with just soap and water.

A complete list of my photography equipment

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