Packing kids’ lunches can be fun…or frustrating!  Ellen Briggs of Family Food Experts shares a menu of great options to pack fun and nutrition into your kids’ summer lunch box.  Briggs’ site is also “home of the Kid Kritics Approved Seal,” which is adorable – they will “approve” products that are independently evaluated, have healthier ingredients, and most importantly :), kids like the taste!  Sounds like a winning combination to me…Here are Ellen’s lunch box ideas, including some healthy alternatives to consider:


Go Fresh and Light!

It’s hot, it’s noon, and your camp kids are starving…Revitalize them with fresh produce, some light sources of protein, and plenty of water.  Here are some easy to prepare Kid Kritics Approved Lunch Box recipes your kids will love!

Roll-Ups *
BLT (wrap, turkey bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, mayonnaise)
BLH (wrap, turkey bacon, lettuce, hummus – add some grated carrots)
Turkey Cheese (sliced turkey, sliced mozzarella cheese)
* Replace dairy cheese with rice or almond cheese

Chicken Kabob (chicken, cheese, carrots, red peppers)
Fruit Kabob (watermelon, blueberries, pineapple)
* Slide food on kabob sticks, coffee stirrers or straws

Chicken Pasta salad (chicken, pasta, celery, red pepper, peas, good ranch dressing)
Spring Mix Berry Salad (spring mix lettuce, berries, shredded carrots, slivered almonds,
mandarin oranges, vinaigrette dressing)
Fruit Salad (watermelon, pineapple, berries of choice, red grapes, lemon juice)

Dips – serve with Raw Vegetables
Ranch Dip (additive-free)
Spinach Dip

Purple Power Smoothie (berries, vanilla yogurt, lemon juice, berry juice, cinnamon, ice)
Berry Blast (berries of choice, carrots, almond milk, ice)
Wake-Up Smoothie (fruit of choice, plain yogurt, apple or pineapple juice, ice)

Editor’s Note:  Ellen has more kid-friendly recipes on her site, Kid Kritics.  I love her thinking beyond the food pyramid for lunch box ideas, because they have variety, nutrition, and most importantly for the consumer (kids!), some FUN built in!

We definitely try to engage the kids’ help – form an assembly line, and encourage them to do as much as (age-appropriately) possible in packing lunches.  What lunch ideas can you add to the healthy mix?