47 Easy School Lunches Nutritionists Love
Balancing nutritious and tasty is tricky, especially when it comes to kids. These nutritionist-approved lunches—and lunch components—will solve all your problems this school year.
Registered dietician Sally Kuzemchak tells Parents that all food—and especially healthier fare—will look more appealing when put into cute little compartments. She fills bento boxes for her kids with bow-tie pasta, veggies, two cookies, and watermelon. Check out the 10 lunch box mistakes parents keep making.
DIY chicken nuggets
Nutrisystem nutritionist Mandi Knowles, RDN, LDN tells The Leaf that kids shouldn’t be deprived of popular meals like chicken nuggets. To make them healthy, she makes them from scratch. “It takes very little time to cook up a big batch of healthier nuggets on the weekend, using boneless, skinless chicken breast (or chicken tenderloins). Dip the finger-sized pieces into beaten egg and buttermilk, then roll them in panko crumbs.”
According to an article in The Huffington Post, Rick Hall, a clinical professor and registered dietitian at Arizona State University, suggests edamame has a healthy lunch for kids because it’s not only healthy but also convenient to pack.
Cauliflower Grilled Cheese
What kid wouldn’t like a grilled cheese? Here’s how to make it healthier: Switch out the butter and bread for cauliflower, as seen here on Delish. Did you know that cauliflower is a superfood on par with kale?
Jackie Newgent, RDN tells Real Simple that she packs strawberries for her kids because they’re loaded with antioxidants. She pairs them with a dip like Greek yogurt.
Pizza Stuffed Zucchini
Instead of placing pepperoni and cheese on traditional dough, opt for a healthier topping like zucchini. This recipe from Delish only takes about 15 minutes to make.
Apple Cheese Wraps
This recipe from Weelicious is pretty simple and great. Simply wrap slices of apple and cheese. Add ham for an enjoyable meal your kid will love.
Lunch Box Sushi Sandwich
Turn a boring old sandwich into something surprising. This recipe from The Weary Chef includes simple ingredients like turkey, carrots, and mozzarella cheese in a spinach wrap, which you cut up like sushi.
Moskovitz suggests making a burrito with grilled chicken, cheese, rice, and guacamole. She also recommends not giving up on foods your child has tried only once—especially if the food is healthy. “Experts agree that a food should be offered at least ten times, perhaps prepared in different ways; a consistency change could make the food more appealing to children,” she says.