Kids and Lunch

FYI: I have a new label on my sidebar titled Kids’ Food.  Now…I’m a big believer that all food is kids’ food…but somethings are really geared toward the little ones, so now, I have a specific label for things like that.  I will be adding more and more recipes to that label in the near future.

Ok…lunches.  I get so many emails about what to serve your kids for lunch!  This is apparently a big issue with so many of you moms.  I am going to do my best to address kids and lunches but…let me make a few points first…

1. Lunch is my least favorite meal of the day.  Give me breakfast, give me dinner and give me snacks in-between but lunch, really bores me.

2. My goal for serving my kids lunch is to do it any place but my house.  I serve them breakfast (and clean it up), I serve them dinner (and clean it up)…Mama needs a break during the middle of the day!  So, I try and have lunch places other than my house (which works out about half the time).  We eat at the park, at the pool, on the patio, at Chick-fil-a…we try and eat any place but my kitchen table.

3. When we do eat lunch at home, we have “picnics” on the carpet.  I take a beach towel and spread it out and we all eat on the towel.  Then, when lunch is over, I just shake out the towel outside and cleanup is over.  Plus, my kids think it’s awesome!

4. I do treat my kids to McDonalds and/or Chick-fil-a about once a week…we meet our friends there and enjoy the company and the easiness of it.  In my opinion, a few chicken nuggets and a fruit cup never hurt anyone.

5. I pack their school lunches smart!  My friend Erika is a preschool teacher and so, I pick her brain about what kids bring to school, what they eat, what they don’t and get ideas.  I don’t want to be one of those moms who fills her kids’ lunch boxes with 15 things just so that I look like the “good” mom who has 6 veggies and 4 fruits in the lunch box.  Because let’s face it…at school, I’m not there to say “eat your carrots”, so they might not be eating them.  I pack a small lunch, so out of necessity, they eat what I pack.  I also ask their teachers what they’re eating and what they’re leaving, so I know what to pack.

Ok…here are things my kids eat for lunch when they’re at home with me:

1. PB&J
2. Chicken Nuggets
3. Mac and Cheese
4. Scrambled Eggs
5. Turkey
6. Left-over pasta
7. Hot dogs, chicken sausage, turkey sausage
8. Yogurt
9. A variety of fruit
10. Goldfish crackers
11. Pretzels

These are just some things.  I hide a lot of veggies in their dinners, so I don’t worry too much about that at lunch time.  Plus, they drink a lot of veggies for breakfast (more on that to come).

Here are the things I pack in their school lunches (they go to school twice a week):
1. PB&J
2. Hot dogs
3. Nutrigrain Bars
4. Lunchables
5. Yogurt
6. Fruit
7. Goldfish crackers
8. Pretzels

I mentioned them drinking their veggies…well, this is my favorite invention ever (next to the Keurig, of course!).  It’s my Breville Compact Juicer.

I read about this juicer in Good Housekeeping and decided to buy one for our family.  It is fabulous!  My kids have the best time picking out fruits and veggies for their “special juice”.  We’ll go to the grocery store and I’ll let them pick out whatever they want…they throw in a great assortment of stuff.  We juice apples, oranges, limes, lemons, berries, pears, pineapple, melons, coconut, carrots, celery, cucumber, spinach, kale, bell pepper and tomatoes.  I let them pick two fruits and two veggies for each juice.  It has been so much fun and so educational for them.  They really use their imaginations when creating their special juice.  So, each morning, they have a glass of their juice along with their cereal.  I love the compact juicer rather than the standard size because one, it was less expensive and two, it stores easily.  Plus, all of the parts are dishwasher safe, so after we juice, I just pop it in the dishwasher.  Easy!

Ok…one last thing about lunches.  I bought this little lunch cookbook last year…

I really love to use it!  It has a lot of great ideas for lunches that I use for appetizers and dinners too.  I think you can get really inspired by reading it.  I am going to give one away to one lucky reader!  All you have to do is leave me a comment today telling me one thing you like to pack in either your lunch or your kid’s lunch. That’s it!  One entry per person please.  The contest will end at 4 AM CST tomorrow morning and one random name will be drawn.  Best of luck!
And to come on the blog…Me and Lunches.  I know a lot of you need lunch ideas for you!  I will do a post on that too.

***Contest Closed!  Click here to see the winner***

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  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 10:25 am

    Shay, thanks for the notes about kids lunches. Cinnamon applesauce is also a staple with my kiddo- plus it's easy, portion controlled and healthy. What I really like is your juicer idea. I have a juicer but struggled with combinations… So maybe I just need to experiment! Thanks! -Laura K.

  • Lyndsey A. March 14, 2013 at 10:44 am

    Hi Shay!! I love your blog and read it all the time! I agree with you…lunch is boring and hard to make fun so I would love a book to make it more interesting! I like to take quinoa with cheese or soup and some fruit. Boring but healthy! Have a great day!

  • Sandy March 14, 2013 at 10:47 am

    My daughter only eats PB&J in her lunch and I keep thinking I need to get her to try new things! She is very picky πŸ™ one staple for the lunch box is mini muffins! I make a batch each week and she has them for morning snack! Love your blog!

  • tanyab88 March 14, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Lunchables and fruit

  • Ali G March 14, 2013 at 11:03 am

    Hi!! Love this post!! My son is almost 18 months, he loves grilled cheese, pb & j, Mac n cheese, chicken nuggets, spaghetti, many fruits & veggies, yogurt, string cheese, goldfish, graham crackers, nutrigrain bars & Cheerios. He eats what we all have for dinner whenever possible which helps a lot. Thanks for the tips! πŸ™‚

  • Michelle March 14, 2013 at 11:08 am

    My 6 year old loves fruit in her lunch. She gets bored so we mix it up each day between various fruits Harder in the winter though. Thanks for all the ideas..

  • Unknown March 14, 2013 at 11:11 am

    Love easy lunch!!! Always looking for new ideas and LOVE Chikfilet!!! There are none up here in Michigan:(

  • Unknown March 14, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Love new lunch ideas and LOVE Chikfilet!!! THERE are none up here in cold Michigan: (

  • MorganizewithMe March 14, 2013 at 11:15 am

    Oh Lunch…I totally agree with you! I do bags of dried fruit, like banana chips or apples.

  • Jessica March 14, 2013 at 11:26 am

    I make my sons pb&j for school lunches out of cookie cutter shapes! These last few weeks he get shamrock pb&j with airplane apples! Last month was hearts of course! Thanks for the tips and tricks!!

  • Erica March 14, 2013 at 11:29 am

    Love the extra ideas you gave! I try to mix it up daily, I don't like to eat the same thing so why would the kids? Family fav for lunches is chips and homemade salsa- easy to pack in veggies!

  • Aubs March 14, 2013 at 11:37 am

    So many of your thoughts on lunch are my thoughts as well!! And your lunch list for the kids is pretty much my list too!! Sometimes i'll make your pizza muffins or tortellini and the older boys think its "fancy" and enjoy it! I love the idea of eating somewhere besides the kitchen table!! Going to have to see about incorporating that sometimes!!

    And the juicer….honestly didn't even know that a compact one existed!! Definitely going to have to look into it! Hubby and I were just discussing the other night how the idea of juicing is great and such an easy way to get lots of vitamins & nutrition but the cost of juicers and lack of space we have kind of made us write it off. So glad you shared this!! (and dishwasher safe?! yes please!!)

  • Chrissy March 14, 2013 at 11:43 am

    Nutrigrain bars. My daughter is obsessed!!

  • Stacy March 14, 2013 at 11:43 am

    Apple sauce, marinate cucumber,and pasta salad.
    Stacy y

  • Dawn March 14, 2013 at 11:45 am

    So glad you posted this! I always get stuck on lunch for him! My favorite thing to pack in his lunch that he likes is peanut butter graham crackers!

  • Shannon Shockley March 14, 2013 at 11:48 am

    I make a batch of homemade veggie soup with chicken to freeze. Then it's a quick meal full of veggies for my picky 2 year old. PB&J is also a favorite! Thanks for the tips!

  • Jean Newfield March 14, 2013 at 11:49 am

    I can't wait for more lunch ideas! I often pack celery and peanut butter and string cheese.

  • Rhiannon March 14, 2013 at 11:50 am

    My kids each have a little thermos with their favorite Disney characters on them. I fill them with leftovers from the previous night's dinner and they have a hot lunch! Today they are bringing homemade chicken noodle soup and crackers.

  • Tara G. March 14, 2013 at 11:50 am

    I started to reply and lost it in cyber space! Your first paragraph reminded me of a chapter in a book by H. Clay Trimble, Elisabeth Elliot's grandfather. It is a good thing for kids to develop a varit palate. We homeschool, and I have found that it is a good meal to teach preparation skills….and cleanup! :). My kids like past with just a bit of butter and broccoli and freshly grated parmesan cheese.

  • Mollie March 14, 2013 at 11:51 am

    Such a wonderful posts! My daughter is in Mother's Day Out, and I dread packing her lunch on those days! I normally send turkey, cheese, and yogurt because I know she will eat it!

  • Didi March 14, 2013 at 11:52 am

    The one thing my kids like in their lunch is a cheese stick! Very easy to do!

  • Jennifer March 14, 2013 at 11:54 am

    My daughter is only 5 months so just breastmilk for lunch now, but I am taking notes for the future!

  • Angie March 14, 2013 at 11:54 am

    A lunch I like to pack for myself: Turkey and shredded cheese on a flour tortilla spread with light sour cream all rolled up. πŸ™‚

  • jojo March 14, 2013 at 12:01 pm

    My daughter goes to a preschool where they provide lunch (very helpful for a working mom)! All of the things you listed are staples for lunches on the weekends in my home. I only have to prepare her lunch 2 days a week, but also like making it a bit of an adventure by not eating at the table. Fruit cups and cheese sticks are 2 of my daughters favorite things for lunch/snack. They are so convenient too! Thanks for the tips Shay!

  • JDeffenbaugh March 14, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    What a great idea for a post! My little guy is only 9 months old so I don't have to worry about this for a while but one day I will! For my lunch I love to pack bagel thins and then toast them and add peanut butter with a sliced banana-yum!

  • Paige S. March 14, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    Shay, I discover your blogs within the past couple weeks and have loved them! I've got a few of your recipes on my menu this week. I don't have kids but for my lunch I pack yogurt (I actually eat that for breakfast once I get to work) and Welch's fruit snacks. Everyday. I'm sure people associate fruit snacks with kids, but they are a perfect snack. Also, I try to pack at least one fruit a day. Today I've got grapes, pineapple, and some mandarin oranges.

  • Susan Pentz March 14, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    Soft tortilla shells filled with shredded lettuce, carrots, tiny chopped tomatoes and shredded cheddar–roll them up and include a side of lite sour cream–yum!!!!

  • Paige S. March 14, 2013 at 12:09 pm

    Shay, I discover your blogs within the past couple weeks and have loved them! I've got a few of your recipes on my menu this week. I don't have kids but for my lunch I pack yogurt (I actually eat that for breakfast once I get to work) and Welch's fruit snacks. Everyday. I'm sure people associate fruit snacks with kids, but they are a perfect snack. Also, I try to pack at least one fruit a day. Today I've got grapes, pineapple, and some mandarin oranges.

  • Ashley March 14, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    I love to pack baby carrots in my daughters lunch. She's more of a social eater and will eat more at preschool than she does at our house. Love your blogs!

  • Lauren & Eddie March 14, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    I have a 3.5 year old and a 1 year old so I'm not packing lunch yet, but we usually have the same old things every day. πŸ™‚ Lunch IS boring. My husband eats leftovers. For my son I usually fix either a sandwich or plain jane lunch meat + cheese + fruit or yogurt. I'm not big on veggies at lunch either because I pack them in at supper. I usually eat a "snack" of some sort – beans, hummus, veggies, fruit, etc. I'm not big on lunch.

  • Sheri Banwart March 14, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    My daughter loves string cheese and frozen grapes!

  • Meagan @ The Clanahan Fam March 14, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    I'm just so glad to see lunchables and nutrigrain bars on your list. I was starting to feel like the laziest mama ever just sending that! I detest lunch. Majority of the time they aren't that hungry because they almost always want a mid-morning snack so I end up pitching half of the meal. So frustrating! We have found that raisins are always a hit at lunch though. And my baked cheetos – but I don't like to share πŸ™‚

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Sounds exciting! My husband takes a fruit cup in his lunch every day.

    Amy in PA

  • Julie Willmert March 14, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    My son loves the little tubes of squeeze yogurt!

  • C March 14, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    I also, hate hate lunch, so boring. πŸ™‚ anyway whould love taht vookbook cuz im alwasy looking for new ideas. Some stuff my kids eat, yogurt, pb adn jelly, lunchmeat sandu=wiches, eggs, tuna, egg salad, veggies, fruit, hotdog, mac n cheese, ckn nuggetts, corn fritters, pancakes, waffelsticks. I lvoe the idea of eatting somewhere other then the kitchen table πŸ™‚

  • jamie March 14, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    Great post! I love the beach towel picnic idea!

    My 4 year old is a major lunch eater. For school her favorites are grape tomatoes, any fruit, hummus with pita chips or a little thermos of soup!

  • The Regal Pup March 14, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    I pack mainly the same things as you. Instead of Goldfish crackers, I buy the Annie's "organic" cheddar bunnies. They also come in a variety of flavors. You can buy in bulk too, at Costco.

    With the hot dog in their school lunch; do they care if it's not warm? Just curious…

  • Shannon March 14, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    I totally agree…I do not want to clean up after all three meals πŸ™‚ We also eat at home for breakfast/dinner so it's nice to mix it up for lunch. My kids also like hummus so I will break up some pita bread and send some hummus for my little boys lunch.

  • MAK March 14, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    Thanks for the ideas! I get bored with lunches too but a staple in mine is kroger brand strawberry lite greek yogurt. Its my dessert!

  • Whitney March 14, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    I always pack greek yogurt as apart of my lunch. It satisfies my "sweet" craving! πŸ™‚

  • Carrie March 14, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    I love the morning juice idea and now will look into a juicer. I pack noodles often for my 2 year old when she is at grandpa and grandma's while I work. It's her favorite, but the grabdparent's also have tons of other food if she wants something different.

  • The Dinsmores March 14, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    Sometimes I just have to resort to chips and salsa!

  • farmwife03 March 14, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    I have a VERY picky 3 year old so one thing she loves is goldfish crackers and goldfish pretzels. She also loves the Gerber Graduates puffs (they look like cheetos) so she'll eat those on the side with her ham sandwich (the only kind of sandwich she'll eat right now). We have been working REALLY hard on getting to her to try new things so I'm hoping she'll grow out of her pickiness and start eating better.

  • Hayley Chandler March 14, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    Great ideas! My son is 13 months old so just now really starting to eat all table food. I love that you keep it simple. Thanks so much!!!

  • Kelli Harshman March 14, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Great post! I don’t like that fruit cups and pre-cut fruit packages are filled with preservatives. I bring apples, grapes, and fresh cut pineapple in my lunches for a healthy source of sugar. String cheese is also a staple with me. I also buy the mini packages of peanut butter to go with my apples to add some protein.

  • Mindy March 14, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    My daughter (8) would love to have the uncrustables PB&J everyday. I buy the reduced fat ones. Other days I will make her a regular PB&J on wheat bread and use a cookie cutter to cut it out. She loves when it is a cool shape (like a heart on Valentine's Day). She also always gets some kind of fruit (banana, yogurt, applesauce or melon – when in season). Love your blog and would LOVE this book.
    Thanks again!

  • Shawna March 14, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    Being a teacher, I get to see all sorts of packed lunches every day!! The best snack to pair with a sandwich and crackers is a crusher. It's different types of mixed fruit and veggie applesauce a in a convinient slurp it up and squeeze package. They have all sorts of types and brands out now, but a kid favorite are the Crushers from Trader Joes.

  • Randi Jo :) March 14, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    your post is so encouraging to me that all the things I feed my lunch are normal! I'm so happy to see other mommies around the country feed the kiddos the same things I do! πŸ™‚

    The only thing I didn't see on the list that I pack in my kiddo's lunches.. or give them when they are home… are those applesauces (and other baby foods too) that are in "sucky pouches" — lol I don't know another name for it. But I love that all 3 of my kiddos can eat them without a mess and even in the car (gasp!) and they love them. My kids are 6, 2 and 1 πŸ™‚

    God bless you Shay & your family. I'm praying for you all – I can't imagine how many challenges comes along with being in the spotlight in our country.

    I pray your family dynamics work out beautifully and there's lots of great communication and humility and love to help ease all these transitions with your to be sister in law. I pray that Catherine loves Sean as much as he has shown he is ready to pour out his love & devotion to his woman! πŸ™‚

  • The Holman Family March 14, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Thanks for the information! I am always searching for good ways to hide healthy food and good ideas for my munchkin. One of her favorites for lunch is ants on a log or peppers with hummus. For my husband, he loves protein smoothies with pb2, bananas and TONS of spinach πŸ™‚ Have a great day!

  • Natalie Stephens March 14, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    For school, my son helps pick what he wants. It typically ends up being pb&j, veggie straws, yogurt, and a fruit. It's usually all gone when he gets home so for school days we do that!

  • March 14, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Both my kids love the squeezable applesauce packets. So easy & less messy!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Squeeze applesauce! Love your blog!

    Amy S

  • Lexie March 14, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    I have a soft place in my heart, for apple sauce!

  • March 14, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    My kids love the squeezable applesauce packets. So easy & less messy!

  • Sandi March 14, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    My kids are so picky!!!!!! It drives me crazy! They love Campbell's chicken noodle soup. Occasionally ill buy the soup with characters. I warm up in the morning while making breakfast and put in a canister. Ramen noodles are also a lunch favorite!!!

  • Karen Knoll March 14, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    I love your blog! You have such a sweet little family. My daughter loves "cerealealeal", so about once a week I let her eat it for lunch too. πŸ™‚ We also do macaroni and cheese, egg omelets, fruit, yogurt, and good ole' hot dogs.

  • L March 14, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    I love to pack either a side salad or some fruit with whatever leftovers/lunch I plan to take to work with me – that way I get at least a small amount of healthy each day at lunch.

  • Liz March 14, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    Yes-lunch is hard. Holden is huge on pb&j and mac n cheese right now. We also do a lot of turkey and cheese fresh fruit and veggies and yogurt!

  • Melanie Butler March 14, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    I need ideas on healthy lunches for sure! I always pack yogurt…but that's about the only thing that stays the same!

  • Jackie Joy March 14, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    Love your blog by the way!

    I always think that the best thing for a kid's lunch is shapes. It really isn't about what you put in the lunch, as along as it is in a neat shape, they will more than likely eat it. For example, turkey sandwich shaped like a dinosaur. Or cheese shaped like a star!

    Kids love things in shapes!

  • Maggie&Kyle March 14, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Since I only have a 6-month old, she gets formula πŸ™‚ My lunches usually consist of juice from my juicer (love it too) &/or a sandwich. Thx!

  • Laura March 14, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    My daughter isn't in school yet, so most lunches are spent at home. But, when we are out I really like the convience of applesauce pouches, fruit in a cup and squeezable yogurt tubes.

  • Sarah March 14, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    I have a 4 yr old, 2 yr old and a 9 mon old so they don't attend school yet. But my boys (the 2 older ones) love having chips and hummus. I'd say we have it for lunch 4 out of 5 days during the week! We have some other things w/ it but they ask for "Chips and hummus"!

  • Camden's Corner March 14, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    My son is a fan of the lunchables and carrot sticks with some ranch in his lunchbox. I get extras from McDonald's for his lunch

  • Angela Foote March 14, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    I have a 14 month old and I always cook a whole portion for him of whatever I make for dinner. He of course only eats about a third of it, so I always feed him the leftovers for lunch the next day. It's easy to reheat and he also gets all the good veggies that were in dinner.

  • Jen March 14, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    My little guy is only 1, but I like to make sure he's getting good healthy fats so we incorporate avocados, edamame, pita and hummus for lunch/snack time. He also loves my green smoothie I make for us every morning with fruits and spinach/kale.

  • Mrs. G March 14, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    Love this post about kid-friendly lunches! Back when I was still teaching at a primary (PreK-2) school, I saw many kinds of lunches being packed. Some parents went simple and got GREAT results: one mom always cut out thick-sliced sandwich meat into shapes for his little boy (hearts in February, turkeys in November, pumpkins in October, etc!) and he always ate ALL of his lunch. She also didn't pack a plethora of things– only the sandwich meat, a fruit cup, and a small ziploc of crackers (fish crackers, wheat things, chips sometimes). It was wonderful! I've also seen hot lunches brought to school to via thermoses– but HONESTLY, this meant I was opening tightly-closed thermoses during my 25 minute lunch break. πŸ˜‰

    Now, being at home, my little guy and I usually eat leftovers. I keep about 3 days worth of dinner-leftovers in the fridge and try to rotate them out, so we're not eating spaghetti at night and for lunch the next day. Once a week we grab take-out as well and hit up the park. Being at home has taken some adjustments, but having reasons to get outta the house is BIG! I love me and the little man's lunch dates πŸ™‚

  • Alice March 14, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    My kids love apples! So I usally buy those $1 snack packs in the produce section that have sliced apples and either peanut butter or caramel too. My daughter and I make her "uncrustable" pb&j's on Sunday evenings. We make 5 and store them in the freezer. It works as the ice pack! And by lunch time it is thawed out. My kids really like nachos and quesadillas as well so when we are home for lunch, I make those. Super easy!

  • Brianne R March 14, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    My lunches are always boring since it is normally leftovers. I am never excited about lunch because we have just eaten the same thing the night before! That book sounds fabulous!

  • Alice March 14, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    I have a dumb question about juicing…do you leave peeling/skin on the fruit and veggies? Do you cut stuff up? Give me some more pointers please!

  • Casey Hayes March 14, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    My son is in kindergarten and he loves Lunchables for lunch. That is what I normally send when I pack his lunch for school.

  • Angela March 14, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    I enjoyed this post! I'm always looking for new ideas for my kids lunches and ways to sneak in healthy veggies into their meals. One thing my girls love to take to school is yogurt in a tube that is frozen. By lunch time it is thawed and delicious. And it also helps to work as an ice pack! πŸ™‚

  • 2emahers March 14, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    I have a very picky eater so her lunch is almost exactly the same every day, but I'm always sure to include a little treat for dessert. Even a small container of choco chips and mini marshmallows is a huge hit.

  • Jen Weber March 14, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    string cheese and a turkey wrap are staples for me…it has to be easy and convenient :).

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Shay – do you cook the hotdogs before you pack them for your kids lunches? I have never thought about packing hot dogs. I was just curious if they eat them cold.

  • Rebecca Thomas March 14, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    I know how you feel about leftovers, but my husband and I typically take leftovers from last night's meal to work for our lunches. I know that this probably works better for us since we don't have kids yet, but its quick and easy and keeps us from wasting food!

  • Crystal Flamisch March 14, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Hi Shay,

    My daughter loves Peanut Butter and Fluff sandwiches.

  • Lindsay S March 14, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    Love the idea of the compact jucier! Right now I make green smoothies for breakfast but once those get old, this could come in handy. I love salads for lunch. Pre-packaged lettuce/vegetables, some shredded cheese, black beans, and Newmans dressing.

  • Lindsay March 14, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    You can never go wrong with PB&J!

  • Lovejoys March 14, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    Snap Peas and Hummus for me and my 3 year old…I think he likes that it is a crunchy snack he can dip!

  • Dawn March 14, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    Lunches have recently become a bit more challenging for one of my daughters b/c we are switching her to dairy free due to digestion issues. I used to send goldfish, yogurt and cheese sticks often. Now I have switched too craisins, cashews, applesauce and shaved deli turkey. I'd love to have ideas from this book too.

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    I need this for my grandson. He does not eat but a few meals and he is 21 months old. Same thing over and over again.
    Ann T

  • jen March 14, 2013 at 2:04 pm

    Thanks, Shay!! My William loves blueberries and mozzarella cubes! πŸ™‚

  • Shelley March 14, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    I usually send deli meat (fresh), fruit, cheese, or crackers for my son's lunch.

  • Emelie March 14, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    I hate lunch too! And I have a very picky three year old and often have no idea what to feed her. Maybe I should start juicing! I love that idea!

  • Natalie March 14, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    I love to pack salads… Crazy enough my kids prefer that or lunchables so momma chooses salad as often as I can πŸ™‚

  • Cori March 14, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    We love yogurt, berries and granola packed in our lunches.

  • Kelly March 14, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    Love the kids post. My daughter is still too young for lunch, but for me, I always have yogurt and string cheese at work.

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    Hi – I just discovered your blog and I LOVE IT!
    I usually pack a whole wheat tortilla, some mini pepperoni's and a fruit (apple slices or strawberries) in my little boy's lunch. He goes to school twice a week so that's what he gets and he LOVES it!!
    Ashley L.

  • Steph March 14, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    I have a short time to eat lunch most days so I try to make it quick and healthy – this week it has been overnight oats with fruit.

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    I love to pack apples for me and my little guy.


  • Amanda H March 14, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    Chef Boyardee is my hero when I have to send a packed lunch! I usually just put half the can in a container so she has to eat some of the other stuff too (fruit/veggies, yogurt/string cheese). My daughter is not a sandwich eater but will eat the components of a sandwich separately so I have sent lunches consisting of cut up turkey lunch meat, cheese cubes, cherry tomatoes, and pretzel rods, along with some fruit. She eats it so I'm happy!

  • Nicole Egdell March 14, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    My son loves hummus and carrots/pretzels in his lunch!

  • Stacey Claassen March 14, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    I love the Chobani champions squeezable yogurts for everyone in the family!

  • ~Shelly~ March 14, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    Thanks for the ideas! If I have to pack a lunch for my 5 yr old I usually send a lunchable, or a turkey/cheese sandwich with goldfish and an applesauce. Her fav!

  • Jessica March 14, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    My favorite lunch snack is hummus!

  • JenniferW March 14, 2013 at 2:40 pm


    Thanks so much for sharing! Lunch is my least favorite meal of the day…who wants to cook and clean up 3 meals a day? I take the kids out for lunch a lot, although I would like to do more easy stuff at home.

    When we pack lunches in the summer to go to the park or to Six Flags, I usually give them something like rolled up deli meat, frozen peas, and pretzels and hummus.

    Ziploc makes these AWESOME divided containers (3 sections)…I am absolutely in love with them for lunches on the go. I throw them in our cooler bag with some ice packs….so easy!

  • Andrea D March 14, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    String cheese is a staple for us. Quick, easy, and healthy!

  • Kim March 14, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    Since my 4 year old doesn't like bread, I pack her turkey or salami sandwiched between cucumbers. πŸ™‚

  • The BuckMaster March 14, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    My lunches tend to be kind of boring too since my favorite meal is dinner so I put most effort into that. One thing I pack daily though as part of my lunch and/or snack is a greek yogurt! My absolute FAV. right now is the Chobani flip with coconut yogurt and almonds and dark chocolate mix-ins….its to die for! Tastes like a dessert but is much better for you!

  • Archana March 14, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Hi Shay, I love your blog! Thanks for sharing some wonderful recipes, ideas and experiences. I have a three and a half year old toddler and I sometimes make pancakes with steamed veggies (broccoli, carrots, peas) for lunch or a veggie omelette and a fruit such as blueberries or strawberries to keep things interesting for her! πŸ™‚

  • Ashlan March 14, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    I teach 2nd grade, so I love to see what kids pack for lunch. It's crazy how different it is. From Pop-tarts to leftovers they bring all kinds of things. I love to pack turkey pepperoni, with string cheese, and crackers. Easy, simple, and delicious!

  • AmyJ March 14, 2013 at 2:53 pm

    I always have garlic stuffed olives in my lunches!

  • Kara March 14, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    I pack a variety of things in my lunch but mostly tons of fruit, cheese sticks, hummus and carrots, snap peas, multigrain crackers for some snackies πŸ™‚

  • Kelly Wilson March 14, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    My daughter loves chicken nuggets in her lunchbox. We heat them in the morning and wrap them in aluminum foil. She also loves Chick-fil-a Sauce, so I always save the unused extras to pack with her lunch. A dipping sauce that is not messy and needs no refrigeration!

  • Heather March 14, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    I have a very picky 9 year old eater. He usually wants lunchables or pb&j. I need ideas!!

  • Dear Addilyn March 14, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    I pack strawberries for my daughter's lunch…and Bugles. ha!

  • Sarah March 14, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    This is great, going to love reading through all of these. I bring the same thing almost every single day to work for lunch, a turkey sandwich and fruit. I'm so boring, same lunch for about 10 years…occasionally I throw in left over dinner but mostly it's a sandwich and fruit. I used to do chips, but decided I'd rather eat chips after work before dinner.

  • burns145 March 14, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    My daughter is only 3.5months old so packing lunches is in my future. I imagine that sandwiches will be my go to lunch item along with a fruit &/or a veggie.

  • Jayne K March 14, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    Love your juicer idea for getting in fruits and veggies…yum! I love packing the organic fruit strips or lara bars to get some fruit into my day! I usually use them as a snack for some extra fuel throughout the day!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    We love uncrustables in our lunches too! But I also make peanut butter and honey sandwiches. I always use a cookie cutter to cut it out:)
    Melea C

  • Allie March 14, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    Great post! Even though I don't have kids, I really enjoyed reading this for the future! My favorite thing to include in lunches is something that can be combined with peanut butter to kill that constant pb craving I always have!

  • Julie H. March 14, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    I love love love to have an apple everyday with my lunch.. Mmmmm
    Deciding what to have with that apple is sometimes a challenge though. Today it's spinach salad, delicious! Love your blog πŸ™‚

  • Lindsey Wolfe March 14, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    I always have a big 'ol salad – today a taco salad.

    Today my son has a PB&J, apple slices, raisins and he gets one treat every so often and hasn't had one all week so today he has some pudding. πŸ™‚

  • Erika M March 14, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    I love to pack hummus and dip carrots or pretzels thins in my lunch!

  • Cassandra March 14, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    Hi Shay,

    I read your blog everyday and love it!!!!!
    Like most other moms i do not enjoy lunches.
    My boys love it when i send them home made perogies with bacon on top.

  • Mary C. March 14, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    My 20 minute cinnamon rolls are a great lunch/treat every so often.

  • Jessica March 14, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    Thank you!!!! I have a 14 month old so snacks and lunch are new for me (and us) so I love the ideas.. and am really excited about your new Kids Food category!!!
    I think my little man loves Goldfish the most.. he picks up two of them and makes them "kiss" each other before he eats them, because that is always what I do with them. πŸ™‚ Nothing like fishy kisses!!!

  • Angela Ellingson March 14, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    My little ones aren't school age yet, but some of my 2 year old's favorites are spaghetti, rice and broccoli, pretzels with yogurt for dipping, pancakes, celery and carrot chips, cheese, oatmeal, apples, and she loves those little smoothie squeezers for tots. πŸ™‚

  • March 14, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    I feel like have the pickiest eaters in the world!
    But a staple at my house is yogurt tubes! a win win every time!
    thanks Shay!

  • Misty Flynt March 14, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    I typically pack very similar things in my kids lunches for school as you do. Turkey, hot dogs, cheese sticks, carrots, applesauce and yogurt. I always want to add something new, so I would love to see what this cookbook could add to my lunch packing. Thanks for sharing your lunch tips.

  • Annie March 14, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    Hi Shay! I really enjoy both your blogs and look forward to reading them! I'm pretty simple when it comes to lunch. Usually leftovers if I'm home or PB&J, a cutie and probably cinnamon covered almonds to take to work.

  • Jennifer Ruk March 14, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    What a great post! Lunch making at our house happens at night. We like to make them at night so in the morning we can grab them and go. My 11 year old loves Uncrustables in her lunch. Just make sure you keep them in the freezer until the morning and then toss them in the lunch box before heading out the door.

  • KRMM21 March 14, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Ugh lunch….my dreaded chore of the day is packing my kids lunch!!! Would love to check out the cook book you use for new ideas

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Hi Shay,

    Great blog i read every day πŸ™‚
    My boys love when i pack them homemade perogies with a little bit of bacon on top along with sliced up peppers (love that they choose fruit and veggies over candy)

  • KRMM21 March 14, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Ugh….packing my kids lunch is my dreaded chore of the day!! I would love to check out some fresh new ideas in that cookbook plus I may have to splurge on that juicer that sounds really fun

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    My oldest son is 8 and he always has to have a pickle in his lunch. I am in rut though with his food so this would come in handy. We always do a sandwich, chips, fruit, pickle and dessert. Thanks for the ideas ~ love your blog!

    Jennifer Young

  • Carrie March 14, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    I make my own lunchables… thick cut boars head ham, gluten free crackers (one of my littles has a wheat/peanut/soy allergy), cheese cubes, carrot sticks, ranch dressing, applesauce. The peanut/gluten free thing makes lunches TOUGH πŸ™

  • Kristen March 14, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    We eat at home everyday and a staple of ours is rice cakes. We top them with everything from nutella, peanut butter, cottage cheese, cream cheese or even butter.

    Thank you for this opportunity to win! πŸ™‚

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    My 15 year old loves fruit in his lunch. Some things are boring that eats every day like a turkey sandwich. (tuna makes his breath stink so he can't kiss his gf & pb&j is messy LOL) I try to keep it exciting with different fruits & chips. We killed the carrot thing because he had them every day for the first 3 months of school…:( Michelle M.

  • Shannon Grushkin March 14, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Thanks Shay,My kids love frozen grapes in their lunches!!!

  • Debi Donaho March 14, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    I love to do a bento-box style lunch for my kids. You can buy them or use a small ice cube tray. I fill it with small cubes of cheese, small crackers (like little ritz or cheez its), raisins, cheerios, grapes, diced apple, small carrots cut in half, rolled up ham or turkey cut into halves/quarters, almonds, and a few treats like chocolate chips or m&ms. They like nibbling on small pieces because it seems more like a snack than lunch yet I have a variety of nutritional items in there. They don't eat everything, but they usually try each little compartment. They are easy to stack in a lunch box for the park, zoo, road trips, etc.

  • Jessica Pace March 14, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    As a school teacher, I don't usually eat the cafeteria food. I usually pack a can of soup or a chicken salad. Those are my go-tos because they are quick easy and usually just enough to hold me over until the end of the day.

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    I really like packing a granola bar in my lunch in case I need an afternoon snack.

  • Brandi Buehrer March 14, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    My kids are not in school yet. But the biggest item that they love and eat alot of is Ravioli and meatsauce. And then tapioca or yogurt for a desert.

  • Healthy Home Maker March 14, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    My kids love a peanut butter sandwich more than about anything else I could make – along with fruit or carrot sticks and ice cold water.

  • casmommy March 14, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    Love all your blogs Shay! Two of our lunch box staples are frozen yogurt tubes (Gogurts)and frozen grapes. I can have them all ready to go in the freezer, throw them in the lunch boxes, and they've thawed by lunch time!- Tara

  • Bookworm's Shelf March 14, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Hi Shay! I am a teacher and I see many kiddos enjoying Gogurt! They seem to really enjoy it plus it's a good quality snack πŸ™‚ Love reading your blog by the way! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, family, and recipes with us!


  • AmyRay March 14, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    I have a picky 5 year old. She will only eat a PB&J for her school lunch. She has stated quite emphatically that she WILL NOT be buying lunch. EVER. So, always a PB&J and always some kind of fruit. I let her choose something crunchy/salty – pretzels are her favorite, and we have 4 or 5 types of pretzels in the house at any given time!

  • Andrea March 14, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    This was awesome! I hate lunch too. Dinner is definitely my thing! Lately I have been giving my son grilled cheese for lunch with some homemade cranberry applesauce, which he loves!!

    For myself, when I was working full time I always packed a few clementines, so I could snack on them throughout the day and have one at lunch!

  • Jaren March 14, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    Great post! I have gotten a lot of ideas from the comments already! I started making my own "lunchables" for my daughter since she wasn't crazy about the deli meat they come with.

  • Deidre March 14, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    My kids love mini muffins (Entemann's) and turkey roll-ups for lunch. I always need new ideas!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    Trail Mix with almonds, a few chocolate chips, and goldfish mixed together. Pretty healthy and they love this!

    Pinehurst NC

  • JenetFuller March 14, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    I've been juicing for about 6 months now and LOVE it. I can't wait until I have kids and can get them into fruit and veggie juices. It's such a great way to get them the nutrition they need and you know it's good and fresh. I love that you get them so involved in picking out what goes into their juice. Such a great idea!

  • Andrea March 14, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    Oh my gosh I need this book! I am always stumped when it comes to packing lunches that they will eat! My go-to is usually a frozen go-gurt or crackers with peanut butter smooshed into a little sandwich

  • Joy March 14, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    I am the minority. Lunch is my favorite meal for me. But I do struggle on what to feed my 5 yr old at school everyday. I would love the cookbook to get some fresh ideas. If I don't win I will have to go buy it. πŸ™‚

  • Fisher March 14, 2013 at 4:29 pm

    Lunch is my favorite meal of the day and always has been. I love soups, salads, sandwiches, and all other lunchy foods! Unfortunately, it is the only meal I spend away from my husband and 2 preschoolers because I work full-time. In order to make lunch special for my kids while they are at school, I put a lot of TLC into making them after they've gone to bed. I find that they like food that we've given silly names to (green grapes are turtle food) or things that come in shapes (Pepperidge Farm goldfish shaped bread). They also like dairy food in sticks (like yogurt or cheese). And lunch wouldn't be the same without dessert so I always pack a treat like a small bag of Mini M&M's or even a mini donut. Anything that will put smiles on their faces! Oops, this is getting too long, and I'm at work πŸ™‚
    Love your blog!!

  • Meredith Broussard March 14, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    Chobani and La Croix Sparkling Water…to keep me away from sugary sodas!

  • Laura Fuller March 14, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    I agree; lunch is B-O-R-I-N-G! I pack essentially the same things for the children and soup for myself!

  • RebeccaLynn17 March 14, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    As a teacher, lunchables are definitely very popular! Also, the new trend to hit the lunchroom are squeezable apple sauces "GoGo Squeez"

  • Kelly March 14, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    I like to take pop chips, apples, hummus and carrots in my lunch box:).

  • Kristin March 14, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    My daughter is 3 and still loves the little applesauce pouches and we call them "fruit squeezies". They are so easy to throw in my purse for outings!

  • Rhondi ~ Big Mama's Home Kitchen March 14, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    I always include at least one type of fresh fruit in my girl's lunch boxes. They never get tired of fruit.

  • Chelsea March 14, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    I would imagine feeding kiddo lunches is exhausting. By the time you clean up it is time to feed them again. I love packing meat filled salads for my lunch, like a chicken salad or tuna salad. It is savory and delicious and I can eat it at my desk with rice crackers if I get busy.

  • Laura March 14, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Love it! I hate cleaning up after lunch too. It is the worst. My kids love apple slices! And – if I am feeling especially Martha Stewart-y – I will whip up a batch of graham crackers as a lunch side item.

  • Kelly March 14, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    I have two year old b/g twins. My son is very picky. For Mother's Morning Out I send pb and honey sandwich, fruit and a squeeze pouch. My daughter loves cheese so she usually gets 1/2 sandwich, cheese stick and squeeze pouch. They don't have a microwave in their classroom so I can't send anything that requires to be heated up.
    (BTW, I have made three of your meals in the past two weeks and they are delicious!)

  • Belinda Ramos March 14, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    For my lunch My go to snack of choice is 100 calorie snacks!They are perfect portion and just the right amount of sweet

  • aprilparrish March 14, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    Now that you mention it, LUNCH is BORING!!!!
    My girls love the little cups of mandarin oranges and as a family we love the little Cutie oranges… So some mornings I will go ahead and peel it for my youngest daughter who is in kindergarten and put it in a princess container so she'll notice it first when she opens her lunch box. Packaging is everything!!! Have a blessed day Shay!

  • Tabaitha March 14, 2013 at 5:16 pm

    I like to pack air popped popcorn in my kids lunch instead of chips. It's something different and a little healthier than chips, since my kids aren't pretzel fans.

  • Elizabeth March 14, 2013 at 5:17 pm

    My 3 year old little girl loves sandwiches….and she always wants to "help" in the kitchen! So I let her use the cookie cutters and cut out shapes of her sandwich. She gets to pick what goes into her sandwich, and then she always picks at least 1 fruit and 1 veggie, and usually some string cheese. I would love that book–I'm always searching for more ideas about lunches, especially when she goes to school next year! πŸ™‚

  • Katie Waldron March 14, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    Hi! I love your blog! You are such a cute mom with awesome ideas.
    I love to put turkey & cheese wraps in my kids lunches. Whole wheat tortilla, turkey, cheese, maybe a little spinach or hummus. πŸ™‚
    Would love some new ideas with this cookbook. XOXO Katie

  • Kristen Boyle March 14, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    I love your blog! For my 2 elementary aged kiddos, I pack fresh fruit, egg salad or Turkey sandwiches, yogurt and 2 small cookies, everyone needs a little sweet treat, right! Thanks for sharing your life with us!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    I usually pack sandwich meat, crackers and fruit. Good tip-cut apples and put them in a bowl of pineapple juice in the fridge. This keeps them from turning brown and they don't taste funny like the per packaged ones.

  • Kelly March 14, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    Hi Shay,

    With 4 kids everyone has a favorite, but brown sugar ham wrapped around a low fat string cheese is a big seller πŸ™‚

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    My son always wants a turkey/cheese sandwich (on wheat), usually an applesauce cup or grapes and either a few chips or pretzels. πŸ™‚

  • USA Kiwi (Kylee) March 14, 2013 at 5:51 pm

    I always send plain cheerios in my son's lunch, and ALWAYS a banana.

  • Stephanie March 14, 2013 at 6:00 pm

    My kids love turkey or pepperoni rolls….I get pepperoni's or turkey in the deli and put that on a flour tortilla, add cheese (or not), roll it up, toothpicks to hold it together and cut in half! Always a hit!

  • Rachel [at] floral and fudge March 14, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    Looks like a fun book! Nolan goes to the fridge 100 times a day, so he grazes. But at lunch, it's usually a mozzarella stick, a handful of veggies, milk, and a granola bar. In elementary school, I brought PB&J every day from kindergarten to 8th grade, and haven't been able to like the sandwich since! πŸ™‚

  • klmoore23 March 14, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    Hoping to win this for my friend who just mentioned the other day how she HATES lunchtimes at her house! She did say however that wraps (in any form) are always a hit.
    Excited for your new section!
    Kristy πŸ™‚

  • Shelby March 14, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    I like to pack cheese sticks and/or yogurt tube in my kids lunches! PB&J and egg salad are a huge hit as well.

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    Applesauce cups are always great to put in lunch boxes. I make little pizzas and hide veggies in the sauce. πŸ™‚ I usually give them a healthy fruit leather that is mostly fruit, cut up grapes, and apple sauce. I also hide spinach in their orange juice and put it in a cup that they can't see through. πŸ™‚

  • Olivia March 14, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    Turkey wrap, cut up – tortilla, garlic cream cheese, 1-2 slices of turkey, spinach leaves, tomato…roll up and cut into pieces. Side of fruit with it.

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    When, – like I said "when" we pack our girls lunches they love string cheese in their lunchboxes.
    Paula F.

  • Lindsay F March 14, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    I love to pack a sweet treat in my lunch! When I can't have lunch at home the one thing that still makes it something to look forward to is a dessert! Cookies, candy, brownies, or chocolate covered pretzels give me a boost in the middle of the day πŸ™‚

  • The Rose Family March 14, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    Fruit cups, fruit leathers, and cut up grapes.

  • Sarah March 14, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    My 3 yr old loves PB sandwich with carrots, goldfish, string cheese and fruit. What do your kids eat for breakfast?? He seems likes he just wants waffles everyday! πŸ™‚

  • Kim M. March 14, 2013 at 6:41 pm

    Hi Shay!
    I have such trouble with lunches, mainly because my 4 year old is such a picky eater! I am trying so hard to introduce some veggies but one thing he loves is Boathouse farms 'green juice' as he calls it! It's the only veggies he gets practically, we'd be lost without our green juice around here!

  • J March 14, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    I pack them popcorn sprinkled with melted coconut oil and nutritional yeast – they think it's a big treat! Thank you for the chance to win!!

  • Kimberly March 14, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    Since I had my second baby, my two year old gets PB&J almost every day. But my baby is getting more predictable so its time to work in some new stuff!

  • Stef March 14, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    I loooove leftovers for lunch! I am not a big sandwich eater, but my hubby is. He's happy to take a sandwich for lunch and leave me the leftovers from last night's dinner!! πŸ™‚

  • abbymcalpine March 14, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    Oats and Honey Bars! Healthy and give a good crunch as opposed to potato chips πŸ™‚

  • Mrs. SBA March 14, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    Edamame. The kids love to shell them and call them "magic beans". Can you write more about what you put in your juicer?

  • Carissa March 14, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    My son is 18 months & the pickiest eater! I used to get very frustrated with everything that he didn't want to eat but I'm trying to let it go. One thing he does love is a peanut butter & banana for lunch! He is always wanting to eat the same thing as me so I make myself one with a 100 calorie bagel so it isn't as bad on the waistline lol.
    Your blog has given me lots of different meal ideas & I find myself wanting to try new recipes often.
    I would love a copy of this book.

  • Alisa Evans March 14, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    I like to make skewers for my kiddos lunch. Salami, cheese, tomatoes, grapes….who doesn't love eating food off a stick! Possibilities/combos are ENDLESS, so perfect for your blog:)

  • Wendy Clarke March 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Hey Shay!!

    Love reading your blog. My kids love go-gurts, clemintines and string cheese of course!!

  • Leslie March 14, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    My little guy loves PBJ, but I try to mix it up by cutting it with fun cookie cutters!

  • Amie March 14, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    My favorite snacks to take to work for the mid day munchies are turkey pepperoni's and sliced cucumbers πŸ™‚

  • Daniela March 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    My 3 year old daughter likes chicken nuggets, turkey hot dogs, applesauce, yogurt, smoothies, goldfish, PB&J with strawberries, apples or bananas. I try to eat our lunch out also – less clean up and it is more fun. We do McDonalds, Chick-fil-a with friends and picnics at the parks. I

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    Hi Shay! I love your food and family blogs and love that you picked this topic! I pack an uncrustable sandwhich at least one time a week for my kids it is just so easy and they love it! Thanks! Kristen Modesitt

  • regina March 14, 2013 at 7:59 pm

    My son loves "kabobs" made with pretzel sticks. He thinks they are so fun!

  • Katie Stoneham March 14, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    ALways raisins – they don't always get eaten but most times they do.

  • Heather March 14, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    My kinder baby likes to take peanut butter and honey sandwiches. I'd rather skip lunch and have a snack. πŸ™‚

  • AmyJo March 14, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    I let Wyatt pick out cookie cutters with the holidays to cut his sandwiches in fun shapes. Makes it more fun for him… And me (I hate making sandwiches – no idea why but I do). Yogurt raisins have been popular lately. And our preschool puts everything they don't eat back in the lunchbox, which at first I thought was weird, but it really is so helpful. I know how much sandwich he ate, how much of the apple, etc.

  • Heather March 14, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    My little one year old still loves fruit or veggie purΓ©e and a yogurt for lunch. I usually opt for some natural lunch meats but normally they are not a hit. I spend two nights a week roasting veggies and peeling fruit and always have our purΓ©ed food on hand. I like the juicer idea…I may need to invest in one of those.

  • Lesley C March 14, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    Love your blog. It's nice to know I'm not the only mom out there thinking the same thing when it comes to new lunch ideas.

    I have a 4 and almost 2 year old. They both really love tuna mixed with a little bit of chopped pickle and miracle whip on Ritz crackers (or whatever cracker I have on hand). Also, the GoGo Squeez applesauce pouches are very handy for the park, picnics or car rides. Lesley

  • April March 14, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    I love to put things in those silicone cupcake baking cups and give them little animal food picks. Sometimes, if it looks fun they will eat it! Applesauce and cucumbers are a favorite in this house.

  • Allikaye's Mama March 14, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    Oh boy…my 6 year old wants chicken nuggets and ranch ALL the time! Every lunch! Blah! πŸ™‚

  • Sara March 14, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Applesauce or pudding cups….A little treat with lunch πŸ˜‰

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    My trick is I always pack lunches the night before. Even if we are at home. I put the lunches in the ziplock containers with a big square and two little rectangles. I cut up veggies and divide them between four containers. I use the big square for me and the little ones for my kiddos. That way I eat more veggies. My rule is you have to eat everything in your box before you can eat anything else.

  • Sara March 14, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Applesauce or pudding cups….A little treat with lunch πŸ˜‰

  • The Bryan Family March 14, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    My kids love PB&J for their lunches so to spice up those boring sandwiches I like to use cookie cutters to make fun shapes for whatever season we are in. They find it more enjoyable to eat.

  • Jamie March 14, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    This would be a great book for my daughter who packs lunches for a 3 year old and a 5 year old!

  • Jill Sullivan March 14, 2013 at 8:52 pm

    As a mom to a 3 1/2 year old who goes to preschool every day, making lunches is constantly on my mind! It's funny but most of your staple school lunches are right on with what I pack for my daughter. PB&J is a constant! But I do feel that I rotate between the same few things. I'm always trying to pack something new, different, healthy but also fun for my daughter. I feel like I'm in a rut with school lunches! Love your blog btw πŸ™‚

  • Shelby Allen March 14, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    No kids for me, but one thing I pack daily is fresh fruit! Right now I am on a pineapple kick! Regardless I like to keep my lunches light. Let's be honest, who wants to eat a heavy meal and fall asleep at their desk? Not this chick!

  • Pam March 14, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    Fresh fruit! My daughter loves it. I also like to pack cheese cubes.

  • Dena March 14, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    My son could live on pb & j. He also loves cheese sticks.

  • Kristy March 14, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    For my daughter and myself, two lunch staples are hard-boiled eggs, and carrots with hummus.

  • Matthew and Jennifer Smith March 14, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    I don't like lunch either, I usually eat leftovers. I have a child that would eat peanut butter everyday if I let her.

  • Katriel-Maria Berbert March 14, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    I don't have any kiddos yet, but I'm one of 8 in my family and my mom every morning would line up 9 paper bags (she'd make lunch for my dad too) and each bag would get a sandwich, fruit, bag of veggies, and then goldfish or pretzels and sometimes applesauce. Sometimes she'd send us with raisins and almonds too. I went through a health kick in high school so I subbed out pretty much everything for chopped veggies! Now a days I just pack leftovers from the night before, but I imagine that won't work as well with little kiddos!

  • C March 14, 2013 at 9:28 pm

    I feel so stuck on lunch ideas, so this would be great!
    My daughter is allergic to peanuts so her lunch staple for preschool (2 days a week) is an almond butter and jelly sandwich along with some peas, some fruit (her current fave are Cuties:), and yogurt or a cheese stick.

  • Morgan Julane March 14, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    I hate packing a lunch…but when I do, it's usually salad with a side of fruit and veggies! I'm like you – I would much rather eat snacks than lunch.

  • Kelley E. March 14, 2013 at 10:20 pm

    Love this post! I struggle with lunches (and sometimes dinner too)!

    My 20 month old goes to mother's day out once a week and I usually pack her some mixture of the following:

    PB&J Sandwich
    Applesauce pouch
    Fig Newton Cookies
    String Cheese

  • Lins @ Country Roots City Living March 14, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    My 8 year old is so much pickier than my 2 year old. I always pack my 8 year olds lunch for school and I never leave out his Gogurt. I love that you can freeze it and it will thaw by lunch time. He will suck every last drop dry. I am so glad he loves yogurt so much! πŸ™‚

  • Mandi March 14, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    Yogurt is a must for my kiddos lunch. We pack one everyday. She could probably live on yogurt if i let her! Ha!

  • Mandi March 14, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    I pack a yogurt everyday. It is a must in her lunch! She would probably live on it of I let her! Ha!

  • JaneSand March 14, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    That looks like an awesome little cookbook. I sometimes pack my twin boys' lunch (they too are in preschool) depending on what is on the menu for the day. One thing I most always pack as a treat are about 6 little marshmallow ice cream cones….. you know they're so cute, and my kids love marshmallows! These are shaped like ice cream cones!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 10:39 pm

    My 8 year old always wants a peanut butter & jelly sandwich, string cheese and a fruit.

    Lisa C.

  • Allison March 14, 2013 at 10:46 pm

    I love packing hummus with cucumbers in my work lunches. My son is only 9 months old, so he mainly gets formula for now. πŸ˜‰

  • Keri Ronk March 14, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    I can't wait to see more kid lunch ideas from you! I am totally with you on the dislike of lunch! Its so boring!

    I've been trying to make more bento-style fun lunches for my girls. Cookie cutters for the win! My 3 year old loves cucumbers so those are included in lunches most of the time too!

  • Leah McPeak March 14, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    I love taking clementines! So easy and yummy!

  • Stacey March 14, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    I have an in home daycare and struggle with lunches EVERYDAY!!! Most of the time I use leftover from the night before, but sometimes there are no leftovers, or its something I know they won't eat. Of course my go to it Chicken Nuggets but lately they are really like chicken quesadillas. I just use small tortillas and put shredded cheese and Oscar Meyer Chicken Lunch meat in the middle, and grill them like grilled cheese.

  • Jill March 14, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    My daughter loves clementines, AND she can peel them…win-win! Wish you were giving aways a juicer. πŸ™‚ Just sayin'.

  • Siobhan March 14, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    Im a big fan of soup and grilled cheese! Especially during the chilly winter months up north!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    My kids eat smoothies with a lot of vegetables – and I made Popsicles out of smoothies for an extra special "treat". For lunch at school we do homemade muffins, yogurt pouches, xheese sticks and fruit!
    Kara V

  • Shanaeoc March 14, 2013 at 11:47 pm

    My kids like sandwiches – sunbutter (a great alternative to peanut butter) or ham. I have a very hard time finding something to eat myself for lunch. Usually I have leftovers, because I'm not really into sandwiches. Looking forward to hearing your ideas for kids lunches. Thanks!

  • Hillary March 14, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    I pack my daughter's "bento" style lunch w pbj's and veggies cut into shapes using mini cookie cutters. She will eat a flower shaped cucumber over and over bc it's "fun" we also use watermelons pineapple etc and she gobbles them up! Strawberries cut into hearts is so cute and fun and removes the stem all in one!

  • March 15, 2013 at 12:14 am

    I have a 5 and almost-4 year old; I make my 4 yr old's lunches at home (he's super picky, so PB&J almost every day). For my kindergartner, I often pack cucumber sandwiches – she can't get enough of those! πŸ™‚

  • The Watts Family March 15, 2013 at 12:29 am

    I LOVE your blog!!! And agree with you and everyone else here that lunch is no fun and I never know what to do for lunch! So, thank you for the help and it is nice to know that I am not alone! PB&J's are popular at our house! Can't wait to hear more lunch ideas and I love the juicer!!! Great idea!

  • freckles March 15, 2013 at 12:30 am

    My girls love it when i freeze homemade smoothies for their school lunch. πŸ™‚

  • Kelli March 15, 2013 at 12:32 am

    My kids love salami and cheese rolled up :). And all the standards of course! I try to pack cheese sticks and fruit for snacks during the day when they're at the sitter. They'd eat fruit all day long… But vegtables are a different story. I'm going to look into that juicer- thanks!!

  • Kelli March 15, 2013 at 12:34 am

    My kids love salami and cheese rolled up! They also love their fruits ad cheese sticks for snacks while they're at the sitter. I'm def going to check out the juicer though for extra vegtables! Thanks.

  • Tracy March 15, 2013 at 12:45 am

    We love apple slices dipped in Nutella and peanut butter! Yummy!

  • Lindsay March 15, 2013 at 12:52 am

    What a neat book! String cheese and yogurt… Thanks!

  • Knox's Mama March 15, 2013 at 1:01 am

    I like to do ham and cheese cubes. Thanks for the blog!

  • sandi March 15, 2013 at 1:03 am

    love your blog but i don't love lunch! two out of three are in school all day… they pack their own lunch. usually a pbj or turkey sandwich with a kashi granol bar and something salty like goldfish or pretzels. the whole school takes a fruit break at 10:00 so they have mandarin oranges, a banana or apple slices at that time. i like that it helps with the mid-morning slump before lunch.

  • Laura Carter March 15, 2013 at 1:06 am

    My almost 3 year old loves turkey pepperonis, triscuits, mini cucumbers, and cuties (clementines) in his lunch! And best if all it's quick and easy for me to pack

  • Sarah March 15, 2013 at 1:10 am

    My twin girls are 2 and are pretty picky right now, so I like to keep their lunches simple. Our lunch favorites are crackers, string cheese, grapes, strawberries, apples, Mac n cheese, grilled cheese and yogurt.

  • Sarah B. March 15, 2013 at 1:10 am

    Another lunch hater here, though I didn't really hate it until I became a mom. We eat a lot of PB&J and yogurt. I do try to pack fruit in the preschooler's lunch.

  • Anonymous March 15, 2013 at 1:22 am

    I usually take a frozen meal because I can't stand lunch meat, but I'm about sick of frozen meals too!


  • Cherry Blossoms March 15, 2013 at 1:23 am

    SO glad you shared some food suggestions with all of us as I feel I feed my child the same thing over and over.
    I love packing string cheese! Easy and mess free.
    This book looks great and would be a great resource for me!

  • EMC March 15, 2013 at 1:24 am

    Go-gurts or fruit pouches make it easy on the kids (and teachers) for school lunches.

  • Hillary March 15, 2013 at 1:25 am

    Pb&J, yogurt, and fruit. My kiddos want fruit with every meal!

  • Jenna {Real Simple Girl} March 15, 2013 at 1:29 am

    I'm totally inspired to buy a juicer now! Good to know that you like the one you have! Can't wait to read your next post about lunches. I'm always looking for new ideas of things to bring to work.

  • Taylor March 15, 2013 at 1:31 am

    Thank you for this post. I am constantly trying to find new, appetizing things for my kiddos to eat. Right now they love turkey & cheese tortilla roll ups!

  • Salem Crew March 15, 2013 at 1:35 am

    Lunch is a tough one for us too. My son is 21 months and very picky. It's all about finger foods so we do cheese sticks, apple slices, sandwhiches, goldfish, graham crackers, and he still loves those fruit and veggie puree packets. If we're at home we go for leftovers of dinner the night before.

  • Anonymous March 15, 2013 at 1:37 am


  • emilyanne March 15, 2013 at 1:41 am

    My 16 month old loves apple butter sandwiches. So she usually gets that, a cheese stick and blueberries! She also loves spicy foods, like salsa and guacamole!!

  • Jay & Janelle March 15, 2013 at 1:42 am

    We are boring with lunches! Lots of PB&J over here…

  • Erin Keene March 15, 2013 at 1:50 am

    I pretty much always have a green smoothie for lunch or sometimes a turkey sandwich!

  • Mandy March 15, 2013 at 1:52 am

    My daughter LOVES hummus and pretzels so that is our go to lunch staple.

  • amy March 15, 2013 at 1:58 am

    I need help getting away from my daughter's beloved turkey hotdog!

  • Erin March 15, 2013 at 2:02 am

    Love good lunch ideas! I teach preschool where my daughter goes and I am always checking out what the kiddos bring. I have seen it all…from oreos and potato chips(no joke)to three course meals.
    A no fail for us is fruit. There is always fresh fruit in her lunch because I know even if she will eat nothing else all day, she will never turn down fruit!

  • Lindsay March 15, 2013 at 2:03 am

    My little one isn't in school yet but will start in September! This would be perfect to get me started on making his sweet school lunches! He loves any kind of berry so those will for sure be in his lunches. πŸ™‚

  • About me March 15, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Love your blog and how practical you are with everything!
    I like to pack my kids rolled up lunch meat( turkey and cheese or ham and cheese.)

  • Justin & Haley March 15, 2013 at 2:20 am

    Love this post and adorable book! I'm always searching for ideas but my favorite addition to any lunch on the go is a sweet note of encouragement! πŸ˜‰

  • Abby March 15, 2013 at 2:21 am

    I pack my kids PB&J, but I use a cookie cutter and cut the sandwiches into different shapes for the kids. They love it and it's always a surprise for them at lunch!

  • The Valentis March 15, 2013 at 2:21 am

    My kids love the fruit and veggie squeeze pouches, and so do I! It's a quick and easy way for them to get a serving of fruit and veggies without them fighting it. πŸ˜‰

  • Justin & Haley March 15, 2013 at 2:22 am

    This looks like an adorable book! My favorite addition to lunches is a sweet note of encouragement! πŸ˜‰

  • Meghan Bolhuis March 15, 2013 at 2:30 am

    Love your blog! We like to pack the squeezey applesauce packs in our to-go lunches πŸ™‚

  • Daysha March 15, 2013 at 2:30 am

    I love make my son's peanut butter and honey sammies with cookie cutters into different shapes and write on them with food markers !
    Daysha Behmyer

  • Sammy March 15, 2013 at 2:30 am

    I have a 4 year old and a 3 year old. I always try to pack various veggies with ranch dip or slices of fruit with a fruit dip. If it has dip they always seem to want to eat it.

  • ChristyR. March 15, 2013 at 2:31 am

    My kids love lunchables, goldfish, pretzels, frozen grapes, applesauce, string cheese and yogurt.

  • Amanda Hain March 15, 2013 at 2:42 am

    Lots of good ideas! My lunch varies but I usually pack a salad or cut up veggies, yogurt, trail mix, and fruit. Sometimes just leftover food I can heat up in the microwave. πŸ™‚

  • March 15, 2013 at 2:48 am

    Tomato soup (my son calls it "creamy red soup,") with goldfish sprinkled on top!

  • Becca at One Girl March 15, 2013 at 2:50 am

    I have trouble with my own lunches! My go to lunch consists of fruit &/or cut vegetables, pretzels, cheese. Otherwise I do make large batches of soups & chili and freeze them in single portions for myself for a great healthy lunch on the go.

  • Beth March 15, 2013 at 2:51 am

    Thanks so much for all the lunch ideas. I've having a hard time feeding my 4 yo & 2 yo lunches. It seems they get more picky about their food each day! It's frustrating!

  • Virginia March 15, 2013 at 2:54 am

    We are big fans of Greek yogurt for lunch at our house!

  • Paula March 15, 2013 at 2:58 am

    We are at home most days. Creative days are my favorite. Like, pizza on English Muffins and let the kids do them!!!

  • Amanda Hain March 15, 2013 at 3:02 am

    Lots of good ideas! My lunch varies but I usually have a salad or cut up veggies, yogurt, trail mix, and fruit. Or sometimes just leftovers I can heat in the microwave. πŸ™‚

  • The Stein Five March 15, 2013 at 3:04 am

    My kids love to have a turkey and cheese or pb&j sandwich in their lunches and they love for me to pack a yogurt as well πŸ™‚

  • Tiffany Johnson March 15, 2013 at 3:24 am

    Martha Stewart has a wonderful line of lunch containers. I found them at Macy's and they are super easy to pack and clean

  • Jody March 15, 2013 at 3:54 am

    Love the juicing idea! I need to get mine back out and let them pick!! Our staple in the lunchbox is crackers and cheese. Also going to ck out that book!! πŸ™‚

  • Clar Lyn March 15, 2013 at 4:01 am

    For lunches, everything goes better with Tostitos tortilla chips with lime!

  • Carrington March 15, 2013 at 4:13 am

    I love to pack my son PB&J uncrustables! He loves them and they are so easy!

  • Emily March 15, 2013 at 4:21 am

    I'm a huge fan of DIY fruit and yogurt parfaits! Throw some yogurt Ina Tupperware with sliced strawberries, bananas and blackberries- so filling and so healthy! Makes me feel better about the extra large coffee with creamer I drink in the morning πŸ™‚

  • Tami March 15, 2013 at 4:22 am

    Shay,my daughter lets my 4 year old grandaughter pick out her cookie cutter each night for her turkey and cheese sandwich. This way the ends are gone and she gets excited to see her sandwich in that shape at Mother Day Out. Her way of helping mommy! I love your blog and thank you again for sharing your family with us. I would love to win the book to give to my daughter for some "extra" ideas.

  • AZHarmony March 15, 2013 at 5:06 am

    Trader Jose's carrot and apple crushers are a regular!

  • Alicia March 15, 2013 at 5:20 am

    Love to pack cheese, fruit, and yogurt!

  • Anonymous March 15, 2013 at 9:30 am

    I have a five year. I always pack string cheese and Ritz crackers in her
    Christene Amy

  • Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} March 15, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Okay, didn't read blogs yesterday, but this post was GREAT! Sad that we're not meeting you for lunch today. Love our lunches with the Shulls.

  • Alice March 15, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    I didn't look back thru all the comments but I forgot to mention pinwheels. My kids love when I make them! You just take a tortilla, put whatever you want on it (mayo, turkey, cheese, etc), roll it up, and then slice them into pinwheels.