Healthy Bag Lunch Ideas...

Updated on June 05, 2011
W.C. asks from Minneapolis, MN
11 answers

I need to start making bag lunches for my 2 kids, 6 & 5 yrs for their summer program. They will have access to a refrigerator but NOT a microwave.

HELP! I've got 3 mediocre ideas.... NO allergy concerns, but looking for HEALTHY (or at least healthish) ideas :-)

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So What Happened?

THANK YOU!!! These are AWESOME ideas!!! Keep them coming :) I'm going to have HAPPY kids, YIPPPEEEE!

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answers from Minneapolis on

My kids love peanut butter rolled up in whole wheat tortillas. They are easier and cleaner to eat than a sandwich and don't get smasked in their lunch boxes. My kids are 6 & 3 and we pack a lot of bag lunches.

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answers from Dallas on

Buy a thermos for more options. I use them for my kids lunches and they work awesome. For foods that need to stay warm, I boil water on the stovetop and dump it in the Thermos and let the hot water sit for a few minutes to get the Thermos good and hot. I then dump the water out, quickly dry the excess water and dump my kids hot food in and screw the lid on tight. For cold items, such as a container of yogurt, I place the Thermos in the freezer for several minutes and right before it's time to leave, I dump the yogurt into the ice-cold Thermos. Food really does stay warm/cold so that should open up your options for sure!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

laptop lunch website has fabulous and unique lunch ideas.

My ideas:
Any sandwhich with whole grain bread
sliced cucumbers, baby carrots, celery with cream cheese and raisins
triscuits and cheese
bananas, apple slices, oranges, grapes
string cheese
granola trail mix

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

i 2nd the idea for a can send hot dogs, mac and cheese, hotdish etc...i normally use a couple of times a week for summer lunches. also, a good lunch doesnt need to be a sandwhich all the time...hard boiled eggs, cut up lunch meat/sausage, cold chicken, crackers/cheese, tuna pasta salad. i also have a sandwhich cutter that makes a sealed circle and other little cut outs...makes a pj sandwhich more interesting a couple times a week. also try pita bread, buns, wraps to break up the sandwich factory.

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answers from Spokane on

I make my 7 y/o his own little lunchables ~ he loves it. Or some days I do a sandwich, others a wrap, sometimes a turkey dog and bun.
I add applesauce, fruit, veggie sticks and dip, cheesesticks, gogurt/yogurt and sometimes pita chips or the quaker cheddar popcorn things. At times I have even put in baggies of popped popcorn.
For the drink I do the roaring waters or he has his water bottle with him.

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answers from Minneapolis on

Whirl up or mash 14 oz cooked (or canned and drained) garbanzo beans with olive oil or tahini until creamy and lemon juice and kosher salt to taste. With or without garlic added, this homemade hummus is a no/low-spoil spread or dip that you can jazz up to your kids' taste. As a dipping cup for cut veggies, tucked into a pita with cucumber, or spread on bread with lettuce and tomato, they're all great options that travel well. Omit garlic and go easy on the lemon juice and it tastes almost like peanut butter.


answers from Norfolk on

we love Easylunchboxes ( and they have a ton of ideas on their website. I have two boxes--one I send with my husband to work and one for the kids and I when we're on the go or at the park. Good luck!



answers from Philadelphia on

Check out this site for some great ideas. She also posts her son's lunch on facebook everyday.



answers from Minneapolis on

Onigiri (Japanese rice balls); I'm sure you can find a bunch of recipes online
Pita bread/Hummus/Olives/Veggies
Turkey lunchmeat roll-ups (cream cheese and pickles in the middle)
String cheese
Kebabs of some kind... mozzarella/basil/tomato or fruit kebabs
Homemade fruit leather (really not that difficult!)
Cous cous/Rice A Roni salads
Have fun!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Wraps! My son loves anything in a wrap.
And kids seem to like to graze on bits of all different stuff--grapes, pepperoni, cheese, crackers, olives, hummus, yogurt, etc. The more variety the better!


answers from Rochester on

Here are some healthy lunch bag suggestions:

Sandwiches - Whole grain bread with low-fat ham, turkey or chicken; PB&J (try almond butter and a no-sugar-added spreadable fruit jelly); hummus with cucumber slices and tomato; a wrap made with shredded carrots, greens, cucumber, tomato, sprouts and a healthy dressing or cream cheese; healthy wrap made with chicken salad, egg salad, shrimp salad or tuna salad (use plain yogurt instead of mayo or a combo of the two to make the salad).

Substitutes for potato chips - Nuts, baked corn chips, apple chips, vegetable chips, pretzels.

Vegetables - carrots with hummus or a low-fat cream cheese dip; celery with almond butter or peanut butter; bite-size broccoli, cauliflower and baby carrots with a low-fat ranch dressing for the dip; cherry tomatoes.

Fruits - any fresh or canned fruit, such as grapes, raisins, no-sugar added apple sauce, cherries, etc.

Other - apple slices dipped in a combo of almond butter or peanut butter and agave nectar; apple slices with cheese slices and almonds; nuts with grapes and cheese; salad with cheese, boiled egg, raisins and sliced almonds; yogurt with granola or fruit mixed in.

Leftovers are always a great choice as well. If you need some healthy and fun vegetable recipes for your kids, you'll find tons of creative ideas on my web site at

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