Here are more great lunch ideas to try to keep lunch fun and healthy:
- PBB Roll Up. Peanut butter and banana slices on a whole grain tortilla.
- PBJ sandwich. Whole grain bread, peanut butter and Simply Fruit jam (made with fruit only.)
- Trail Mix Crunch. 1 cup Cherrios or other whole grain cereal, 1 oz. each dried cherries and mixed nuts. Add just a few mini chocolate chips or M&M's if you want to!
- Cheese & crackers. Whole grain crackers and 2 Laughing Cow lite cheese wedges (I love the mozzarella and sun dried tomato,) light cheese sticks or Baby Bel cheeses. Add a few carrots, celery sticks, grape tomatoes and black olives.
- Whole grain baguette sliced. Pack a mini tub of light cream cheese, deli meat rolled up into mini rolls held with tooth picks. Pack with sliced cucumber and tomato slices to put on top.
- PBA. Peanut butter and thinly sliced apple slices on Arnold Sandwich Thins...a MM groupie favorite!
- Ham and cheese on rye. Pepperidge Farm has a whole grain rye bread, top with a few deli thin slices of lean ham (low sodium would be great,) light Swiss cheese, mustard, lettuce, tomato and avocado slices...my husband's favorite.
- Pita Pocket. Fill with tuna or chicken salad made with celery, a little onion, and light mayo or Greek yogurt. Top with cole slaw mix, or any veggies you want. Add olives or avocado for a little healthy fat...another MM groupie favorite!
- Super Salad. Fill a plastic container half full of a variety of deep lettuce greens. Add last night's chicken, turkey, ham, tuna, crab, or 1/2 cup drained, rinsed canned beans (black or any variety.) You could even add a bit of leftover brown rice. Top with a few avocado, olives, nuts or some pumpkin or sunflower seeds. Pack a little container of olive oil vinaigrette or your favorite dressing, and use just enough. Eat with whole grain crackers.
- Cottage Cheese and fruit. Choose the mini cottage cheese containers and the mini canned fruits in their own juices. Add a mini package of Emerald cocoa roasted almonds and a Kashi granola bar (both are listed on My Favorites at the right.)
- Cold Pizza Roll Up. Spread a little pizza sauce on a whole grain tortilla. Top with shredded low fat mozzarella, turkey pepperoni slices and whatever toppings you like: black olives, mushrooms, diced green pepper, tomatoes, etc. Roll it up. Kids love this cold, but if you have a microwave, it's great heated, too.
- Leftovers from last night. Really. Sometimes, they taste great as lunch the next day. Add a fruit, some veggies, or whatever you need. Vegetarian chili, beef stew, leftover pizza....endless possibilities.
Whether you start with tortillas, bread, sandwich thins, pita, crackers, or cereal, you CAN make a lunch that is something different than just a boring old sandwich. Just remember to have some fun with this.
Use variety, color and texture for enjoyment. And be sure to have a MacroMix (blog 9/11/10) with protein, healthy fat, and whole grains along with fruits and veggies for a healthy lunch that will keep your body running well throughout the afternoon!
If you have more to add, let us know!