How to Build a Nutritiously Balanced (and fun) Lunchbox

Here is what lunch prep looks like at my house.

Even though the little guy (age 2) doesn’t have school today, I’m still prepping his lunch at 7am because I have all the stuff out anyways. It saves time later and we bring it out and about with us so that after the gym we may just sit down at the grocery store and have our lunch there.  It gives me a lot more freedom with my mornings out because I feel like we can just stop whenever (and wherever) and have lunch instead of racing home. 

Someone asked about how my thought process works for making lunches….so here we go.  First I decide on the main protein source. Will it be some meat in a sandwich or tortilla wrap? Perhaps just cut up meat and cheese for crackers? Have we been eating a lot of meat recently and therefore I should switch it up for a hard boiled egg or perhaps a nut source of protein? After I decide on the star of the show (protein is so important for kids!) I next think to what will be the fruit and vegetable and as far as this goes my belief is the more the merrier. This is usually the artistic fun part because I always have several options in the fridge (unless it’s been more than a week since I’ve been to the store!) anything else on the lunchbox is all extra. 

Protein Ideas for the Lunchbox:

  • Lunch meat (in a sandwich or wrap or just plain)
  • Smoked salmon (in a sandwich or wrap or on the side – toddlers seem to like this!
  • Greek yogurt
  • Any type of nut butter (including sun butter which is OK for a nut-free setting)
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Hard boiled eggs or egg salad sandwich
  • Tuna or salmon salad (in a sandwich or by itself or served with crackers)
  • Cheese (on a sandwich or in a wrap or by itself with crackers)
  • Hummus, roasted chickpeas or anything else with legumes
  • A bar or muffin either store bought or homemade that is high in protein (check out the recipe here for scrumptious banana nut muffins that have 9g of protein per muffin!)

For more fun ideas to make your child’s (or your own) lunchbox nutritious and pleasing to the eye visit my Instagram account @therealisticlunchbox. Here are a few examples…



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