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Author Topic: Need School Lunch Ideas for picky eaters  (Read 16683 times)
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Monkey Junky Jr.
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« on: August 14, 2007, 01:19:46 AM »

I need the help of all you monkeys for school lunch ideas for my picky eaters.  I would appreciate any ideas and suggestions. School starts on the 20th!
Monkey All Star Jr.
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« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2007, 07:45:00 PM »

I need the help of all you monkeys for school lunch ideas for my picky eaters.  I would appreciate any ideas and suggestions. School starts on the 20th!

  hmmm    I think a lot would depend on the apporx. age of your picky eaters,  what is on the school lunch menu , what they are willing to do to assist you in the prep work and if they have a refrig. to keep things in or can use a microwave.



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Monkey Junky
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« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2007, 03:27:56 PM »

Crazy – I have a vague recall of a few things that might help. Fortunately, mine were not terribly picky eaters (ever!) and were fairly adventurous. Of course there were some no-no’s – raisins NO, but dried apricots YES. Go figure. You just have to venture out.

(Also – don’t know how many of what ages you’re preparing for.)

I think we usually also packed a “snack” for morning or afternoon recess …

Fresh fruit - Fortunately mine loved fresh fruit so there was always that.

Carrot sticks (one also liked celery sticks). We sometimes did cucumber slices. (We occasionally did cucumber sandwiches.)

Snack bars – many products available. Of course try to steer toward the healthier ones.

Ritz or Vanilla Wafers sandwiches with peanut butter – they all like this.

Chips - yes, we did buy the boxes of small packages. But it wasn't an every day thing.

Cubes or slices of cheese.

Pre-packaged containers of apple sauce or yogurt. (These are the only things like this that I recall mine liking … )

One of mine likes pimento cheese (I think you are the monkey who made that not long ago?).

Sometimes I made grilled cheese and wrapped in foil. (An excellent variation on that is rye or wheat bread with Swiss cheese.)

Kids love to dip their food. Collect small throw-away containers; use for peanut butter (for example) … (Save the little containers that BBQ sauce or fast-food dips come in.) Understand that this doesn’t necessarily mean EVERY DAY … and also, yogurt is a good dip. Along those lines, saving little packets of catsup can be useful sometimes.

Every other month or so we would make our own trail mix. You can Google on trail mixes, and adapt to preferences. This is a no-brainer that the kids can help with or do completely. Store it all in the snack-size baggies and it’s good to go.

Hard boiled or deviled eggs. (If I made deviled eggs for some reason, I made sure to reserve a few for lunches.) I particularly liked using eggs for those years they had lunch at, say, 10:45. In that case, sometimes I put deviled eggs between 2 pieces of toasted bread.

As far as sandwiches, mine seemed to get on a streak of first one thing and then another. I tried to steer toward mustard instead of mayonnaise, and pita or whole wheat rather than white. (But also one of the Publix bakery white breads – mountain white, I think it was.) I guess I’m saying that it isn’t worth having a scene about this, because after a week or two, they’re usually ready for a change. For meats, mine always preferred turkey or ham; I use low-sodium versions from the deli (not the pre-packaged products). (In fact I only use Boar’s Head.)

They love for the sandwiches to be cut into strips or quarters.

Meal Leftovers – Those that “make a good lunch” – I would make sure to prepare enough at the meal. Any time we had pasta, or fried chicken, for example. Certain casseroles. Leftover pizza is very nice, cold or room temperature.

We had small size, wide-mouth thermal containers and sometimes used those for heated leftovers.

As good as it sounds, I don't particularly recommend soups.

Small, pull-open cans of tuna. Include some saltine crackers. (Pre-packaged saltines are good for this.)
We used juice boxes of their choosing. We did try to buy actual juice and I'm thinking apple juice was the usual choice. (I think sometimes they bought milk in the cafeteria.)

I think children actually LIKE to “make their lunches” and this is a highly desirable skill to foster … we usually did it the night before, with the exception of last-minute things from the frig, or those that needed heating/toasting.

I seem to remember that we packed “5 things” – the “main” item, a side, a beverage, something sweet, and a snack type thing that might be eaten at a different time of day.

Of course you know to include a couple of napkins, and a utensil if needed ….

The most successful ingredient in a school lunch is a little note or surprise treat. I tried to do that without fail. Can just be xxxx’s and oooo’s … cute paper goes a long way, too.

If they’re taking bag lunches (instead of lunch boxes/totes) - Don’t know about boys, but girls usually go through a stage of “decorating” the bags. This can be a fun thing – if you’re not too exhausted to encourage yet another step in this process!

Much of this you probably know about, but maybe a few new ideas. I hope so. I know that this gets very tedious as the school year goes on. Good luck!

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Monkey All Star
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« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2007, 05:01:11 PM »

Hi Crazy ~!  Cool

  Do you plan  on packing your kids lunch?

Peanut Butter & Jelly snadwich always worked for me and my kids grosing up.. lol
Also little debbie snack cakes.. and a bag of chips.. doritos.. etc
pudding or jello...
Maybe some grapes.. or those little carrot sticks. Celery with peanut butter?

 I know at schools here they offer a hot lunch.. where there is a variety to choose from on the menus?

 I was picky growing up.. years ago.. but  I liked my P&J... my bag of Fritos,, and my snack pack pudidng.. lol
Monkey Junky
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« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2007, 09:04:48 PM »

My kids aren't picky eaters, but they like to take pita bread with hummas, carrot sticks or bell pepper slices, grape tomatoes, celery, fruit, and a drink. They also like cheese and crackers with veggies, fruit and a drink.
And of course...PB & J.
You might also try making a wrap instead of regular sandwiches.
They have even taken cereal and a banana, and bought milk at school, when they were younger. Sometimes, it was just a nice change for them.

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