Monday, March 28, 2011

A Lunchbox Shopping List to Cringe at..

Making lunches for 2 adults and 4 kids can be quite expensive! I actually think we use less food when we are at home, rather than packing to go to school & work - tonight I made Monday's lunches, ready for the morning and this is what I used;
  • 6 Bread rolls
  • 150g Ham
  • Cheese
  • 2 Tomatoes
  • 1/2 Cucumber
  • Handful of Spinach Leaves
  • 10 Cheerio Sausages
  • 6 Muesli Bars
  • 2 x Tins of Tuna
  • 1 x Box of Arnotts Shapes
  • 6 x Apples
  • 6 x Poppers/Juices
  • Handful of Snakata Corn Chips
  • 1 x Packaged Cheese dip/crackers
  • 2 x Yoghurts
  • 1 x tin of baby corn.
OMG! No wonder I find myself in the grocery shop every day.. And I'm not even one to use all that much pre-packaged food (I usually wouldn't use muesli bars as I typically make Muffins, but didn't get around to it this weekend as yet) as boxes of such snacks etc don't last long in our family, unless you buy in bulk.. 1 lunchtime equals a whole box of these products normally because they only contain 4-6 serves.. so I usually fill containers with crackers, cut up fresh food etc..

This term we only have my step kids every 2nd weekend, so the lunch list isn't this offensive every day, but next term when we have them for the entire term, it will be.. and then their will be another little mouth to feed too! .. Some of my favourite lunchbox snacks for the kids are;

  • Cut up cherry tomato, olive and cheese.
  • Sandwiches or wraps with various fillings.
  • Snakata Rice Cracker Corn Chips with a container of salsa to go with.
  • Various Muffins, Pikelets or homemade cookies
  • Fresh fruit cut up! Grapes, Watermelon, Apple Slices, Orange pieces, mandarin, grapes.
  • Cheese sticks cut up from home.. rather than those plasticy shop bought ones..
  • Cheese and Vegemite scrolls.
  • Tins of tuna with crackers to go with
I always pack the kids 3 individual lunch boxes for school and send along a fruit juice box/popper and a drink bottle filled with fresh cold water.  The reason I pack 3 lunchboxes is to ensure the kids have a sufficient amount of food for each break and it stops the older ones eating all of their packaged food during 1 lunch break (which I was finding to be a problem..) Kids need a sustained release of energy over the entire day and I find, this way, it ensures they aren't under or over eating at each of their breaks.

The first lunch box if for munch and crunch or brain food time, which our school participates in, where the kids are allowed a healthy snack during school time usually 10am.  For this break I send cut up fresh fruit or crackers..

The next lunch box is for first break and it contains a piece of fruit cut up and usually a muffin/cookie or yoghurt.

And the third lunchbox is for 2nd break which contains a sandwich (or equiv.. wrap, pasta, tin of tuna etc..)  some cut up olives, cherry tomatoes, cheese etc.. and a small treat such as a lamington finger/biscuit etc.. (depending upon what the other lunchboxes have contained..)

I mix these up often and the best thing I have found for the kids lunchboxes is a sectioned container which has a large part and 2 smaller parts.. perfect for 2nd break. I fill this up and add it to a zipped cooler bag with a frozen water bottle and it ensures their lunch stays healthy and fresh til 2nd break!

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