To continue from the last post, a good way to get started on daily lunchbox planning is to do it based on the 4 vital ingredients. I’ve given some ideas too below.
Try sandwiches filled with chicken, eggs, tuna, cheese or ham (try the turkey kind). My daughter also likes pasta or rice with chicken or tuna.
2. Complex Carbs
Complex carbohydrates, as opposed to refined carbs, release energy slowly, ensuring that your child has enough energy to last the day and wont need a coffee after lunch. Find this in whole grain breads, pasta, brown or red rice and the good old banana.
Kids simply need calcium for their growth, so do remember cheese, yougurts, fromage frais and milk (including milkshakes). Experts say kids above 5 can go low-fat, but personally I’ll keep mine on whole until they hit puberty. It just seems they should enjoy whole as long as they can.
4. Fruit and Veg
Heres where they’ll get their all-important vitamins, anti-oxidants, minerals and other lovely things. I sneak the veg in pasta sauce (tomatoes and carrots), chicken meatballs (with spinach) and even cake (carrot & pineapple). My kids love raisins, oranges, mangoes apples (with cinnamon sugar – the brown kind) and broccoli too, so I count myself lucky. Oh, and corn too. Does that count as a vegetable?
5. The Treat (entirely optional)
Ok, this bit is optional depending on how much of a health-obsessed Mom you are. But even if you are, you can kinda cheat. As a treat, you could throw in one of those fruit leather things (or fruit roll ups if you’re lazy and feeling indulgent) or some cake or cookies (homemade is better, but a raisin oat variety or wholewheat teddy grahams from the store is ok too).
On Martha Stewart’s site, she drew funny faces on fruit with edible markers or better yet, do as my Mother did when I was little and make faces on top of brown rice using grapes and veg slivers. It got me to eat my complex carbs, and made me the envy of my 1st grade class.