Lunch Prep for School

Updated on August 15, 2009
M.F. asks from Duarte, CA
7 answers

I have to prepare lunch everyday for my 18 month old daughter and am out of ideas on what to provide that's simple and healthy and something she'll eat. She's becoming very picky, recently been told she's anemic,and I want to get away from processed foods. Any suggestions?

4 moms found this helpful

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answers from Honolulu on

Ditto the lap Top lunches Riley mentioned.

Here where I live, that is what they do, whether for kids or grown ups.
We make much use of "Bento" boxes.... many Asians and multicultural where I live. Its a real staple item.

Its a great website, it will give you many ideas.

You can also get REAL cute "bento boxes" from E-bay. Just type in the search word "bento boxes." That is where I got some for my kids. They love eating from it.

Your daughter, can take the prescription vitamin "Polyvitamins" WITH iron. That is what my kids took, as babies and toddlers.

Asian foods, can be easy to prep and are very healthy using lots of veggies which are marinated etc. and just chop it up small.

Good luck,

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

We're working on a list of great lunch recipes for weelicious right now. How about O's pasta with pesto, scrambled eggs with cheese (tons of iron in egg yolks) or mashed potatoes with kale (also high in iron)? My son loves all of these!



answers from Los Angeles on

Hi M.,

My son is 24 months and I seem to have the same problem. He is a very picky eater so you never know what he is in the mood for that day. My caregiver will always try something that she has in the fridge if he doesn't eat something I've given him. But here is what I try and pack

So you can try
~half a peanut butter & honey sandwich in eat sizes, turkey slices, chick nuggets, or chopped chicken breasts (you can also buy this pre-done in the produce section)
~white rice is always a winner, nutri-grain bars,
~chopped strawberries, bananas, watermelon, he loves fruit but won't have anything to do with vegis
~yogurt (they have toddler size at the market), string cheese chopped
Hope this helps



answers from Los Angeles on

Is her school able to reheat things? If so then just cook extra for her when you make dinner and send that in tupperware. Hope that helps.



answers from San Diego on

We were a big fan of ziplock twist and lock containers & dinner leftovers :) That way I could make them up the night before & KNEW he'd like them.

Another, are Bento Lunches. I had them (the japanese version) all throughout my childhood...but Laptop Lunches has taken the idea and run with it



answers from Los Angeles on


I just have one quick suggestion-

My daughter loves edamame- the ones that are still in the shell. They have protein and iron. It took her about a week to figure out how to get the beans out of the shell with me showing her but now she really enjoys it.

She also likes eating nuts, so I pack her raw or unsalted nuts. She seems to really like pine nuts.

Hope this helps!



answers from San Francisco on

I'm not sure what your child will eat, but some ideas:
Calcium and protein:
- yogurt (usually vanilla) or cottage cheese,
- sliced cheese, (my kids love gimmicks and so like the cheese wheels in wax or string cheese sliced into circles)

Protein and Veggies (plus some iron):
- hummus and sliced veggies (bell pepper, carrots, zucchini, cucumber, broccoli),
- peanut butter (or almond butter if you guys are avoiding peanuts) sandwiches cut into shapes,
- pita with hummus or tuna
- bow tie pesto pasta, (add spinach or broccoli for iron!)
- black beans and cheese,
- peanut butter crackers (whole grain or graham)
- hard boiled eggs

Protein and Veggies or Fruit:
- corn or edamame
- grapes or bananas or cherries or blueberries or raspberries or dried mango or watermelon
- popcorn (air popped if you can swing it), with nutritional yeast = high in folic acid and iron

- molasses or ginger molasses cookies made with black strap molasses are high in iron. You might check out a box of ginger snaps as these with monterrey jack and dates are yummy and iron packed.

For iron, cheerios and some oatmeal is high in iron, but a peanut butter and whole grain bread sandwich is 25% of the required as is hummus and whole wheat pita.

We have a difficult time getting enough iron in our kid's diet as we are vegetarian, but making sure the kids take a mutivitamin containing iron (which at 18 mos, your daughter can take half of a flintstone) and making sure we give the high iron foods (breads, greens, beans) separate from the dairy (calcium prohibits iron absorption) has worked for us.

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