It all started back in the end of July when I had finished a month full of ice cream posts on Instagram. I asked for ideas about what to post in August and the overwhelming response was: school lunches! Everyone was looking for ideas to change up the school lunchbox routine, so I posted different lunch ideas for each day of the month (minus the one day I was a thousand miles away taking boards.) Many of you requested a round up at the end of the month compiling all of the ideas to save as an easy reference. Here it is! I must admit that even though I’m no longer doing daily lunch posts, I’ve already been mentally saving up more new ideas so this is a topic we will likely revisit in the future.

Before we get to the list of lunches, let’s go ahead and answer the frequently asked questions I received over the course of the lunch series in case any of you were wondering the same things.

Where’s the lunchbox from? This particular lunchbox is from Pottery Barn Kids. We absolutely love it. Other companies, most notably PlanetBox, offer similar products but the one we have is the only one we have actually tried so I have no basis to compare them. I had Pottery Barn rewards dollars to spend and we couldn’t be happier with this box. Last year we were sending a ton of little separate containers, reusable sandwich bags, etc. and it was a giant pain. This has been SO much easier. A lot of people have asked about whether foods leak between compartments. The lid of the box fits snugly to the top of the compartments so there isn’t much communication between them. I think one day there was a minor hummus leak, but we send hummus a lot and that only happened once.

How do you get your kids to eat this stuff? This could really be a whole post in itself, or maybe it’s just my soapbox. Our kids eat pretty much everything. We started as early as possible, feeding them the same foods as we eat and not offering an alternative. If kids learn that complaining will earn them a different type of food that they deem more suitable, picky behaviors can arise. We eat a huge variety of different foods including plenty of fruits and veggies so in our house, this is just the norm. It can be challenging at the beginning but it’s important to be consistent and to not make a big fuss out of it. This strategy, if you can even call it that, pays of hugely in the long run.

How do you keep (avocado/apple slices/etc.) from browning? The kids know that certain foods brown when exposed to air but that it doesn’t affect the taste, so I don’t take any measures to prevent browning. You can minimize it somewhat by brushing with lemon or lime juice but I don’t think that is really necessary.

What about nut allergies? Thankfully neither of our kids has a nut allergy and neither of them are in classrooms with allergy restrictions. Because of this, I use nuts a fair amount in their lunches. However, it is fairly easy to avoid if needed. In place of hummus consider some kind of white bean dip without tahini. Instead of nuts (which I like for some extra protein), consider roasted chickpeas. Instead of peanut butter, use sunflower seed butter.

(Also, quick housekeeping note: A new issue has arisen preventing the photos here from being pinned the usual ways. We are looking into this and are working to correct the problem. In the meantime, please use the newly added “Pin It” button that appears when you hover over an individual image. Thanks!)

That’s about all I have on the topic for now – on to the list of lunches! (Also, my awesome friend Josie also did a lunch post recently that is a great resource. Be sure to check it out!)

  • Sandwich skewers – Take anything you might normally put on a sandwich and skewer it! Just be sure to snip off any sharp ends on the sticks. These included cheese, tomato, cucumber and baguette cubes. Also included: cantaloupe, goldfish crackers, ants on a log and a dinky doozie.
  • Kale pesto pasta – Tastes good warm and at room temperature so it works in lunch boxes. Also included: assorted tomatoes, cucumber slices, strawberries, dinky doozie.
  • Veggie wrapHomemade spinach wrap filled with a thin layer of Boursin cheese and all sorts of veggies we find around the fridge. Our favorite combo in these is shredded carrot, avocado, cucumber and spinach (sprouts are also great). Also included: yellow tomatoes, kiwi, strawberries, caramel corn.
  • Pita platter – inspired by a hummus and veggie platter we ate at a restaurant that Andrew loved, I attempted to recreate by including the same items from the spread. He uses the pita triangles (actually homemade wheat naan I tend to keep in the freezer) to make mini sandwiches with the hummus, veggies, and feta, and thinks this is SO fun. Also included: grapes and dark chocolate covered almonds.

  • More skewers! These were turkey, cheddar, apple, baguette and green apple. Also included: clementine segments, pretzels, watermelon and chocolate covered almonds.
  • Veggie sandwich – The sandwich Andrew asks for every weekend day when we are home for lunch. I used baguette slices to make two mini sandwiches. He likes cheese, avocado, tomato, and usually lettuce. Also included: raisins and cashews, blueberries, carrot and celery sticks, and shortbread.
  • Peanut butter banana honey roll ups – my go-to lunch option when I have zero energy and am making lunch in the morning. This takes about 1 minute to make and the kids love it. Also included: berries, pretzels, cucumbers, carrots, and a mini s’more (with homemade marshmallow – a must) toasted with my kitchen torch.
  • Caprese skewers – fresh mozzarella, basil, tomatoes, turkey. Also included: grapes, hard boiled egg, broccoli and cauliflower with hummus, chocolate covered almonds.

  • Bean and cheese quesadilla – Our whole family loves Mexican food so it’s always a hit when it makes it into the lunchbox. Also included: mango, raspberries, tomato slices and cheater guac (avocados smashed with lime juice and a bit of salt), and a mini brownie.
  • Tuna pita with avocado – I use lettuce to line the pita pocket so it doesn’t get soggy. Also included: cashews and craisins, grapes, cucumbers, tomatoes, and raspberries filled with a tiny bit of Nutella.
  • Black bean, corn and avocado salad with blue corn chips for scooping – Anything involving dipping chips is a big hit with Andrew and he loves this lunch. Also included: blueberries, clementine segments, and a mini brownie.
  • Ham, cheddar and soft pretzel skewersSoft pretzel bites freeze beautifully so I keep a big bag in the freezer for use in lunches. I now use white whole wheat flour to make them whole grain. Also included: grapes and strawberries, carrots and cucumbers, almonds and craisins, and caramel corn.

  • Greek pita pizza – similar to this deal, but no heating involved. Also included: peach slices, cashews, strawberries, and a chocolate peanut butter granola bite.
  • BALT spring rolls (the A is avocado) – HUGE hit! Also included: sugar snap peas, cheese cubes, watermelon, and a chocolate peanut butter granola bite.
  • BBQ chicken flatbread – I typically make pizza or flatbreads and cool completely so they are chilled before sending to school. Who doesn’t love cold pizza flatbread? Also included: plum slices, tomatoes, broccoli with hummus, and raspberries with chocolate chips inside. (This is obviously the reason raspberries have a hole in the center!)
  • PB&J waffle sandwich – Every sandwich is instantly made more fun on waffle “bread”. Any time we make waffles on the weekend, I freeze the leftovers for use in lunches (and I use white whole wheat flour to make them whole grain.) Also included: sugar snap peas, crackers with Boursin, berries and a mini pretzel s’more.

  • Veggie pasta salad – Cold pasta shapes tossed with fresh mozzarella and a few veggies and a bit of oil and vinegar. Also included: rainbow carrot sticks, nectarine slices, cantaloupe and dark chocolate squares.
  • Bean and cheese tostada – Again, we just love Mexican food! I cut a tortilla to fit the box, topped with mashed seasoned black beans and piled high with veggies. Also included: grapes, blue corn chips, apple slices and raspberries with chocolate chips.
  • Thai chicken wrap – I used leftover grilled chicken from a dinner, added carrots, cucumbers, cilantro, lettuce and peanut sauce and wrapped it all up in a tortilla. Also included: tomatoes, rainbow carrot sticks, berries, and an iced oatmeal cookie.
  • Loaded kale salad – Andrew really loves loaded dinner salads but lettuce doesn’t hold up well in a lunch box. Instead I used massaged kale and topped with grilled chicken, hard boiled egg, avocado, and a lemon parmesan vinaigrette. Also included: cashews and craisins, tomato mozzarella stack, berries, and an iced oatmeal cookie.

And last but certainly not least, breakfast for lunch! I made faux French toast skewers by briefly sautéing baguette cubes with a bit of honey and cinnamon. Also included: Hard boiled egg, cashews, fruit salad with mango, raspberry and mint, and a mini pumpkin spice muffin.

I hope you find this post a useful resource for your lunch packing endeavors!

  • JenJF

    These are just beautiful!

  • Stephanie Ashbaugh

    Awesome, my boy is 8 and I know everyone will be inspired by these lunch ideas! Thanks Annie and your greater community!

  • Anna

    You are such an inspiration, I cant even put it into words. Thank you for doing what you do! Your kids must be so proud to have a super mom like you!

  • Melanie Griffiths Stykalo

    Thank you thank you thank! Love this post:)

  • Karina

    I love this! I might start doing this for myself :).

  • annieseats

    Wow, thank you Anna! You are too kind :)

  • Christeen Miller

    Thank you for this post. It will really help me to put together lunches for my little one.

  • DCM14

    This is amazing :) Would you ever consider doing a “day in the life”
    post? My husband and I work full-time outside the home, and I cannot
    conceive of having the time to put stuff like this together (let along
    bake, blog, and knit! haha). I would love to hear your day-to-day
    routines in hopes that I could get some ideas or tips!

  • Sarah

    Thank you for putting this all together! What a great post. And thank you for the information about your approach to getting your kids to eat everything. I love it – it’s simple and it makes sense! I kept seeing that question pop up on your instagram comments which must have gotten repetitive.

    I just thought I would add for any other moms out there who are struggling with “picky eaters” you should know that even though I love this approach, I do also believe that a lot depends on the individual child. I have 2 boys and I used the same exact approach with both of them. One of them will eat everything under the sun, and the other will only eat about 10 foods.

  • atlmichelle

    I truly appreciate you saying that when your kids were really young you simply did not offer an alternative to what you were eating. Our son is only 5 months and we plan to do the same thing, however friends and family think we are crazy and insist our son won’t go beyond pasta and chicken nuggets and other kid food for quite some time……

  • annieseats

    Good for you! Whenever people say things like that to me, I like to remind them that children in all the other countries around the world are not being raised on chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese. Children are just as capable as adults of having widely accepting palates. And even though there are some foods each person will legitimately not care for, they are still edible. I was raised to eat what I was given and it was a valuable lesson for sure!

  • annieseats

    Well, people ask me for a post like that a lot but the thing is, I don’t have any special strategies or secret tips to share. I do not think I am that different from any one else. I try to stay organized and plan our meals, lunches, etc. but beyond that I really am just like most working moms. I’m busy, I’m tired, but I won’t allow my career to rule my life. I insist on making time for all the things I love including my many hobbies because they keep me happy!

  • Christine

    Love this post! I’ve been a long time reader, but this is the first time I’ve been compelled to comment. We’ve just entered the world of having to pack lunches 5 days a week and I was running out of ideas by week 3 so this post is a great help!

    We’ve always had the same policy regarding our kids and food. They eat what we eat (though I do pull out and tone down the heat on very spicy foods for their portion) or they don’t eat (this is not as harsh as it sounds…there is usually at least one thing on the table they will eat). I will say though that our oldest is giving us a run for our money with that policy and has a few meals a week where she eats only a few bites! I’m hoping it’s just a phase but it’s been about a year!

  • Diane

    Annie – Just have to tell you – you gave me similar advice several months ago when I asked about your children’s eating habits. You’re right, it can be tough going but it does pay off. We still have several months to go before I think the fussiness will settle down, but we’ve had some small victories. I think the important thing to remember for other parents who are struggling through this too is that kids won’t starve. Thanks for the advice!

  • Amelia

    I love how you did this post and how creative each lunch is. Do you pack identical boxes for Caroline & Andrew everyday or do you find they have requests/different taste preferences? I am pinning this to look back on when we star introducing foods to our little one next year. I love your parenting strategy on having non picky eaters! :)

  • annieseats

    I’m so glad it is helpful! And good for you for sticking with it. It isn’t as harsh as it sounds and they will eat if they are hungry. I hope it’s a phase too and it probably is. She’ll come through eventually though it may take a while!

  • annieseats

    Yay! I’m glad you are having some victories. It definitely will continue to pay off over time! I’m proud of you for sticking with it :)

  • annieseats

    I do pack identical foods for them, except that Caroline’s portions are smaller and her lunch container has less compartments so I usually leave out one of the side items from her lunch. She is currently going through a more difficult phase (which I am certain in her case is a power struggle) and some days isn’t that interested in certain foods. I still don’t offer other options so when she decides she is hungry again, she still gets offered the same food and she always ends up eating it when she’s hungry.

  • Amy S

    This is awesome! As a teacher, I’ll be using this post to help me pack MY school lunches, haha. Any chance you’d include a grocery/pantry list for lunches like these in a future post? (I love the tiny desserts you put in each lunch, too–chocolate chips are meant for that pocket in raspberries!)

  • Thanks for the great ideas, Annie! I especially like the pretzel bites with ham and cheese on a skewer…everything really does taste better on a stick :) Your pretzel bites are always a hit at our house! Do you just pop them in the freezer after you bake them? My girls are already understandably tired of PB&J, so I know the skewers will be a welcome change :)

  • Kati

    I’ve been a longtime blog reader and I must say, you are truly an inspiration to all working moms out there. I read a quote somewhere (Pinterest probably) that we all have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyoncé. BUT, what we don’t have are the maids, nannies, chefs, drivers, and well you get picture. So YOU girl, are a ROCKSTAR! Thanks for your awesome blog.

  • annieseats

    So glad it’s helpful! I am planning another post about lunches that will cover my general process in how I plan for each week, etc. Not sure I’ll do a grocery/pantry list, but I think what I have in mind will probably cover what you are wanting. I’m not totally sure how soon that post will be written, but it is at least mentally in the works :)

  • annieseats

    Yep, I just freeze them after they are baked and cooled. The only problem with freezing them is that then they are always there tempting me! Haha

  • annieseats

    Kati, you really are too kind! I have to give lots of credit to my awesome husband as well. We’re a team and he does tons to help out around the house so that definitely makes things easier on me. But I’m glad I can provide some inspiration!

  • Marci

    I have a 4 year old and 2 year old boys. With my 4 year old I went with what I saw others do and catered to what she wanted. With my boys I offered them only what I cooked everybody else like you do from the get go and they are very versatile eaters. There are still things they won’t eat, but never throw a fit over it. So I’ve fed my 4 year old this way for a year and a half and while she’s becoming more adventurous, she’s still stuck on not trying several foods. I plan on continuing in my new feeding method but I’m just curious if it seemed like there were points were your kids were more picky or an age where they seemed to be more accepting of all foods

  • Mattie Russell

    Ahhhhh, thank you so much! My son could eat the same turkey sandwich every day for lunch but I’m getting sick of making it! Haha. He’s actually pretty adventurous (he just doesn’t need variety I guess) so I know he would love most of these options and I know it would help keep pickiness at bay. Thank you, thank you!

  • Thanks for the great inspiration! Although meant for the kiddos, this has been great inspiration for my lunches. I have definitely been eating better and more balanced meals. I have the planet box version and like it.

  • annieseats

    So glad to hear it!

  • annieseats

    With your 4 year old, my guess is that things are a bit different from her since the “eat what you are given” wasn’t her introduction to food. I think it will probably be just really gradual over time that the change continues to take place. My kids have had phases where they put up more fuss, but from what I can tell those have been more of a power struggle than actually about the food being served. I’m sure you’ll get there, just don’t give up! And remember to reference Green Eggs and Ham a lot :)

  • Heather Shorb

    We switched to a Bento/compartment style container this year and I cannot believe the difference in the amount of food that now gets eaten. I think the container is half the battle. Thanks for all the ideas, I’m excited to try them out. My daughter is obsessed with Boursin cheese, I’m not sure why it never dawned on me to use it in her lunch.

  • Liz N.

    This is one of my favorite posts! Your Instagram pics inspired me to step up my lunch box game for the coming school year! Thank you for always inspiring me to do better in the kitchen for my family!

  • SG45

    Go ahead and mail some of these down to Uncle Steve in Bloomington… ;)

  • Diana

    Wonderful!!! Thank you so much for sharing and putting this all together!

  • I love this post and the lunch box! I’m going to show it to my boys to see if any of the ideas appeal to them. For the lunch box…does everything stay in place when they open it up at school??? My oldest son tosses his lunch bag into the lunch bin despite me asking him several times not to so nothing stays in place in his lunch bag.

  • Bridgette Muaina

    Love your post. I see that you put watermelon and other “juicy fruit in the container. Do you ever have the juice leak out?

  • Kat

    Hi Annie! My two cents – the summary post is more helpful than trying to keep up daily ;)
    Would LOVE to see these periodically to see your wonderful creativity with other seasonal foods! Thanks for helping us all out.

  • kelly

    Love this! My problem is older kids (translation: insane appetites that over fill the lunch box!!) what is a BALT spring roll & do you have the recipe? Every thing looks delicious!

  • HRM9283

    I’m a little embarrassed to say that I have no kids, but I am totally using these ideas for my own lunch. I find that when I pack my own lunch, I eat much healthier and don’t resort to the dreaded vending machine. I’m curious–do you make these the night before, or in the morning? How long does it typically take you?



    I have been reading your blogs for years now and this post is definitely one of my favorites! Though I don’t have to pack lunches for my 2.5 year old, they sure have been a source of inspiration for my husband and I’s lunches. You rock!
    Oh, and we do the same with our 2.5 year old. She eats what we make and she knows that if she doesn’t eat it, well, there’s nothing else. She eats fruits, veggies, seafood, fish, meat, pretty much everything we make, or at least tries it… There are days where she gets pickier… (power struggle, I’d say!)… but she’s a great eater.
    I’m curious… ever thought about writing a cook book?!

  • Faith Heitman

    Annie, can I come live with you and let you pack MY lunch each day?! :) Seriously, everything looks so appetizing, fresh and fun. My 14 year old saw this post and said he wished it was “cool” to take lunch to middle school, because he’d take these. :)

  • Tracy

    seriously loving this post. All the ideas are awesome. I’m packing them for my lunch!

  • Teah D.

    Can you share the recipe you used for the pumpkin spice muffins?

  • Kira Hartgrove

    I love these ideas!! Thanks for posting! I just wish Pottery Barn would let you buy the metal trays separately, since we already have a lunch box we use (my daughter has to use her Frozen bag).

  • Cindy

    Annie: I have been reading your blog for a really long time and have tried many of your recipes, which we have loved. I have never posted a comment before, but I really need to say THANK YOU for this post!! I have a high schooler and a middle schooler who are packing lunches and it is tough to be creative some days. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate this post. You are a true inspiration!! :)

  • Christina

    Thanks for posting – these look great! Two questions: 1. What, if anything, do you use to keep the food cold? and 2. Do you make lunches in the AM or the night before?

  • As Kati mentioned in the comment, I always wondered how do you get time to do all the baking, knitting and the kids things. I am really amazed. I myself feel may be its because I spend about one and a half hours traveling each way to office… But you are amazing. I check your blog almost every day.

  • Marci

    Two more questions, do you typically send just cold things and how do you pack this up to send with your child for school?

  • Samantha Searles

    This is fantastic, I have a 2 year old and just had a conversation with her teacher about adding more variety to her lunch! Thanks!

  • Andrea

    After reading this, I pretty much want you to come make my lunch!! My kids used to eat much healthier when they were young, but sadly now that they are teens they do not always make the best choices. Oh well.

  • Tracey

    Oh my gosh, that all looks wonderful! I only wish I still had kiddos at home so I could pack those lunches!

  • Karen

    I love this. So colorful and beautiful! I gotta tell you though, I think you lucked out. Before I had kids, I was determined not to be one of those people who only had kids who would eat pizza and chicken nuggets. I made their baby food from fresh veggies and fruits, and never gave them alternatives (still don’t) to what we ate. It was so important to me that they be exposed to a variety of foods and have healthy things they like. Somewhere, this strategy backfired…I guess when they were exposed to foods elsewhere. They are now 8 and 5 and have to be the pickiest kids on the planet. If I put something other than pb&j in one of their lunches and a pizza sandwich in the other, it comes back uneaten. My 5-year-old typically doesn’t eat dinner because she won’t eat what we’re having, almost no matter what it is. So frustrating. That being said, I am going to try several of these anyway!

  • Three Girls One Apple

    Wow! Looks like a lot of time and dedication went into this. Great food choices and they look healthy too. Thanks for sharing

  • annieseats

    Yikes! That is a long commute. I do commute about 45 minutes but I try to make that productive and do a lot of my planning/brainstorming while I’m driving so I can get things done efficiently when I’m not in transit.

  • annieseats

    Yeah, all the foods I send are either cold or room temp. The box closes up to cover the compartments and goes in the zipped up part of the lunchbox (see the link to the box for details).

  • annieseats

    I don’t usually take measures to keep the food cold because it stays cool enough until their lunch time. However, an ice pack can be included so that’s easily addressed if needed. At night I’m usually too tired to do much other than sit on the couch once the kids are in bed, so I wake up early make lunches in the morning.

  • annieseats

    Thank you Cindy! You are so kind. I hope this helps on days when the creativity isn’t flowing freely :)

  • annieseats

    It’s a whole grain pumpkin muffin recipe but I’m still tweaking it. If I get it to a place I like, I may share it eventually. There are other pumpkin muffin recipes on the blog though – just use the search bar to find.

  • annieseats

    So glad the post has been helpful! Yes, definitely have considered a book – I’m in the very early stages of beginning to pursue that now :)

  • annieseats

    I typically make lunches in the morning mainly because after we finally get the kids in bed at night, I’m too tired to do more than sit around and veg. I would say it takes anywhere from 10-20 minutes depending on how involved the lunch is, though it’s hard to say because I’m also trying to simultaneously feed the kids breakfast, drink coffee, apply mascara, etc. Basically mornings are a chaotic blur but somehow it all gets done :)

  • annieseats

    Just BLT with avocado, but inside a spring roll wrapper instead of on bread. We LOVE them!

  • annieseats

    Haven’t had issues with leakage for the most part – see the lunchbox description for more on that.

  • annieseats

    All the compartments are kept separate by the lid so everything stays in place.

  • annieseats

    Haha – love you Steve :)

  • I think my mind almost exploded when I saw all of these ideas! Kudos to you for rounding up all of your own ideas and photographing them. Thanks for the great list.
    Army Wife to Suburban Life

  • Shelly

    They all look so beautiful!

  • RikiTikiTembo

    Annie this post inspired me SO much I hit the supermarket up immediately and my 4 kids went to school this morning with the best lunches EVER. They were soo excited and I felt soo good at seeing nothing pre packaged in their boxes:) I’ve been in a real school lunch rut of late and this post was just bursting with ideas!
    I know a huge amount of work and effort went into this post but from the bottom of my heart I truly appreciated it a LOT.
    Your posts are a never ending source of inspiration to me :)

  • kelly

    Hah! That is what I thought, but it seemed too simple. I had to double check. Thanks for answering.

  • Adele

    You’re the best, Annie, really you are. I’ve been reading your blog for a few years now and every time that I see something I love (which is pretty much all the time), I think “How can she be reading my mind like this?” The things you post appeal to my tastes more than any blog I read. When I saw this lunchbox post, I think I heard angels sing. There’s tons of lunchbox stuff on the web, and finally here’s one with ideas I will actually use. Perfect photos with clear descriptions, items that are interesting yet not so crazy that my kids won’t try them, lots of variety, and creativity that I wouldn’t think of on my own. Plus, there’s nothing that requires me to spend hours shaping a strawberry into a perfect bunny rabbit. Thank You!!


    YAY! Very much looking forward to it. :)

  • Lindsay Newlin

    Thanks for this awesome post. Does an ice pack fit in this Pottery Barn Kids lunch box? It doesn’t look like it leaves much room.

  • annieseats

    I’m so thrilled to hear that! Truly, it makes my day :)

  • annieseats

    Thank you so much Adele! And you totally made me LOL about shaping a strawberry into a bunny. So true ;)

  • Nathalie

    Would you please make my lunches? These are AMAZING; I don’t have kids (I’m in college) but I can’t wait to try making some for myself!

  • Kate Herrold

    Kira – look up planetbox. It is the same concept and they have lots of different sizes, and you can buy it with or without the carrying case.

  • Emily @ Life on Food

    Each box is a work of art. I want one of each for me.

  • Cara

    Not sure if you have already tried them, but the lightened up pumpkin cream cheese recipe Annie has posted is EXCELLENT :)

  • annieseats

    There is room in the bag part of the lunchbox.

  • Jamie | Jamie’s Recipes

    Love this! I’ve been packing school lunches for four years now and love all the inspiration this brings!

  • I’m not a school-lunch packer, but I do try to take lunches to work, and this will be a wonderful resource!

  • Sue

    wow…everything you make always looks so beautiful! i don’t know how you have time to make all these lunches with homemade breads, wraps, etc. do you ever sleep? ;-) thanks for the inspiration!

  • Samantha E.

    I’m a 27-year-old medical student and I wish I had these lunches to take to school! So pretty.

  • Rebecca Madsen

    Ha. My experience too. Our kids used to eat everything and then they turned three. And magically wanted nothing but breakfast, and grilled cheese sandwiches. I am amazed at how they can subsist without dinner. My six-year old tried a piece of lettuce from our salad the other day “for the first time”, so maybe some day they will come back to the good foods. But you know, if they are happy with pb+j every day, it makes my job easier…

    I love these lunch ideas for me and DH though!

  • Gillian

    I love these! Especially the soft pretzel skewer – never thought of that! My kids love breakfast for lunch too. I make 3 lunches every night, which is exhausting sometimes. My kids choose their own lunches (using the LaLa Lunchbox app, from a set of parent-approved foods) but I love to add more choices to it! Thank you for this! Your kids are so lucky!

  • Meghan Jenson

    Annie- this is a wonderful post. I was curious if your kids get negative feedback from their friend’s about their lunches which makes them not want to eat part of their food. My kids are good eaters (for the same reasons that you suggest) but sometimes the peer pressure “I don’t like carrots” from the surrounding kids seems to impact them. May I also ask when you do your food photos? i assumed at night but reading your other responses it sounds like you don’t. Weekends I’m guessing?

  • annieseats

    As far as I can tell, I don’t think they do. I have asked them about it a few times but they have never mentioned anything. Right now my son is in the same grade my husband teaches at the same school where he works (though he is not in his class). Ben says he sees Andrew eating his lunch and that he practically inhales it every day. So we haven’t noticed any of that. And we also talk to them a lot about nutrition, whole foods, etc. so Andrew knows why it is important that we send him lots of veggies, etc. I definitely expected more of that kind of feedback but so far it hasn’t been an issue.

  • Jessica Durnal

    Annie, you are my hero:) I was just looking for ideas to my own lunch too, this is wonderful! thank you for all you do!

  • annieseats

    Thanks Jessica :)

  • Meghan Jenson

    Thanks for taking the time to reply! That is wonderful about Andrew (and so fun that Ben is at the same school).

  • Patty Ball

    hi annie, I was wondering do you make these lunches ahead of time, or just the night before?

  • annieseats

    I make them in the morning before school. It’s just what works best with our schedule.

  • Celine

    Hi Annie, I’m just curious what recipe for tuna salad you use, or if it’s just something you throw together! I’ve been on the lookout for a good one.

  • Miriam Brutus

    Hi Annie, I just want to say how much I really enjoy this post. I have this bookmarked and use this as inspiration for my work lunches (I even bought the same lunchbox you use for the kids :) Please make more posts like this, they are really useful!

  • Melanie Griffiths Stykalo

    Would love another lunch post leading into this school year!!?! My little one is entering full day kindergarten and I’m trying to stock my arsenal with a ton of great healthy lunch ideas :)