So, last year my wife and I were totally spoiled. All 3 kids were at schools where hot lunches wererovided every day of the year. On top of that, there was always a salad bar option for kids that didn't like that day's selection. So you knew that if your kids wasn't having the pasta with cheese, they were having celery sticks and carrots with dressing, or hard boiled eggs, etc. You know - real food....
Alas, this year we've got the kids in a school where everyone is bringing their own lunch from home. They have weekly sushi and pizza days, but with 3 kids at the school, that can be pretty cost prohibitive. Top that with a no nuts AND no meat restriction - and you're looking at quite the back to school storm on the horizon at casa Martell. I mean, seriously? No peanut butter?! I think I took peanut butter sandwiches for some 1600 days of elementary school.
The newspapers the last few weeks have all had their back to school articles running. However, asking a foo-foo chef to come up with back to school lunch ideas for my 5 year old is a laugh. Like the recipe I read on the subway this week suggesting I send her with cold rice salad... with slivered almonds, dried cranberries, and mango mixed in. Really? My 5 year old?
We've tried the mac n cheese in a thermos thing, but are yet to find a thermos that keeps the food warm enough. Couple that with the high cost of good insulated containers, and it's not a trial and error experiment I'm willing to keep failing at.
So here are a few things that work for our crew - but I'd love to hear what you all send your kids with. Pray tell!
My 9 year old:
Hummus with vegetables and crackers
My 7 year old:
Hard boiled eggs whites with grated cheese instead of yolk. He invented this one himself and LOVES it!
Crackers with sliced cheese and vegetables
My 5 year old:
Cream cheese sandwiches
Mini cheese subs
string cheese with crackers