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In less than a month school heads back into session here in New Jersey and some of my friends across the U.S. have already headed back. Whether your kids have headed back or will be heading back soon, one thing that’s probably crossed your mind is what to pack your kids for lunch. If your kids eat anything and everything or are picky eaters, I’m sharing some tips to help you pack the perfect lunch box to keep your kids fueled throughout the day.
PICK THE RIGHT LUNCH BOX SUPPLIES
Let the kids pick out their own lunch box style. Whether it’s their favorite sports team or favorite character, this helps them get excited about the coming school year. My kids love picking out their lunch boxes every year. I’m a big fan of bento-style boxes to hold their food and snacks. One larger box with different compartments inside let me back an assortment of snacks and foods that they love so they’re more likely to eat it.
MAKE LUNCH FUN
Put cute lunch box notes in their lunch boxes to let them know you’re thinking of them. Both of my kids love applesauce and these Mott’s® Applesauce Cups are always found in their lunch boxes. Sometimes, I’ll dress them up with a cute little note to let them know I’m thinking of them. You can print these out to brighten up your lunch boxes this year.
Around the holidays and special occasions, use cookie cutters to cut their sandwiches into fun shapes like this apple for the first day of school or pumpkins for Halloween. You can really get creative here and it doesn’t take much effort. My daughter loves peanut butter, jelly, and banana sandwiches. Loves them.
So I know what I’ll be making her for school. Jif® Peanut Butter gives her sandwiches the creamy, fresh-roasted peanut taste she loves. Combine that with some sliced bananas and Smucker’s Concord Grape Jam and you have a yummy sandwich kids will love. Smucker’s Jam is made from a yummy blend of crushed sun-riped fruit and fruit puree and is great on so much more than just sandwiches.
PACK THEIR FAVORITES
With my oldest, if he didn’t like something and I packed it for him trying to sneak in something, he’d just end up throwing it out. So I learned to pack their favorites, whatever they might be. I’d rather have them eat what they like and not be hungry throughout the day than worry about packing something they just won’t eat, no matter how much I want them to.
FRESH FRUITS & VEGGIES
I’m a big fan of packing lots of fresh fruits in veggies into their lunch boxes. No matter how picky my oldest ate, he always had his favorite fruits (blueberries and blackberries) and veggies (carrot sticks) that I knew he’d eat every day with his lunch.Thankfully my daughter eats just about everything so fruits and veggies are always at the top of her list. Cut veggies into sticks and serve with hummus or ranch sauce for dipping. Celery and peanut butter is a favorite of my daughter. Spoon some Jif® Peanut Butter into a small container and pack with celery sticks.
KEEP THEM HYDRATED
I like to pack Mott’s 100% Juice Pouches in their lunches. Apple Mango is their favorite but they’re also available in Apple and Apple White Grape. This mom loves that they’re 100% juice and the kids love them because they’re 100% YUM! Each juice pouch of Mott’s 100% Apple Mango juice provides 1 1/2 servings of fruit*.
Since back to school is on my mind, I picked up essentials for our back to school lunches at my local Stop & Shop. They had all my favorites from Jif, Mott’s and Smucker’s making stocking on my back to school essentials easy peasy. The juice aisle had all three flavors of Mott’s 100% Juice Pouches and well as the applesauce (on the other end of the aisle). You can find the Jif and Smucker’s over on the bread aisle to make your shopping trip nice and easy
Ready to re-create this fun lunch idea? Earn money back with iBotta on the purchase of the products used here:
- Buy 1, Get $0.75 Smucker’s Fruit Spreads (9 oz. or larger): CLICK HERE
- Buy 1, Get $0.75 Jif Peanut Butter (16 oz. or larger): CLICK HERE
- Buy 1, Get $0.50 Mott’s Applesauce Pouches (4 pk. or larger): CLICK HERE
What are some of your back to school lunch tips?