Back to school is sometimes more difficult for moms then it is for kids. The preparation. The schedule. The waking up and shoving off every morning. And the hours spent trolling Pinterest for loving back to school sendoffs that you’d never have time to make. Overwhelming! Top that off with a few months of serving farm-to-plate meals (okay, maybe I’m exaggerating), and NOW you’ve got kids that scoff at the school lunch menu.
Maybe you’re relieved that your kid doesn’t want to eat chicken patties and tater tots OR maybe you secretly hope that he will try school lunch, at least one day a week, to give you a lunch-prep break. Either way, you know the importance of packing real food—organic when you can—for school lunches.
So without all the fancy photos of sandwiches shaped like hearts and ninja turtle cookies with cream cheese frosting (light on the sugar please). Here are a few REAL food staples that I’m sure you can work into their packs:
Miso Soup (made from organic paste options like Westbrea Natural)
Columbus turkey rolls (no preservatives here)
Fresh farmer’s market watermelon
SeaSnacks Non-GMO seaweed snacks (kids love ‘em & they’re a veggie!)
Back To Nature organic mac & cheese
Carrot or cuke sticks from the farmer’s market
Organic Kettle Chips (c’mon, they’re a veggie too)
Organic applesauce cup
(Hopefully they choose the school lunch of baked chicken with broccoli and salad)
Justin’s peanut butter sammy with raw honey & bananas (basically desert)
Steamed edamame (organic soy again, please)
Organic strawberries or whatever organic berry is cheapest
SeaSnacks seaweed snacks
Columbus salami rolls (without the nitrates)
Homemade salsa from your farmer’s market finds
Garden of Eatin’ organic tortilla chips
Stretch Island fruit leather
Sure, there are a couple things on this menu that are out of the box, but cut a mom a break! Everything listed is either organic or made with REAL ingredients. And when you compare it to serving overly processed Lunchables three days a week, well, you’re doing your kid and your wallet a favor. With a tad more thought, a little night prep, and a trip to your local farmer’s market you can assure a healthy school lunch and an empty end-of-the-day lunchbox.