Healthy Back-To-School Lunch Ideas

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Blog by Calgary Weight Management Centre

This week starts the beginning of another school year and with it comes the need to pack healthy school lunches. To encourage healthy eating, it is important to pack food that your children will enjoy. If they are old enough, have them help you determine what will go into their lunch each week. This is a great learning opportunity to share what constitutes a balanced meal and the importance of fueling the body throughout the day for optimal performance.

Creative Lunches Everyone Will Enjoy

Have leftover pasta? Try this Pasta Salad with Salami and Mozzarella. To reduce the fat and still keep protein high, substitute leftover cooked chicken breast for the salami.

If you have a weekend afternoon at home and want to get prepped for the fall, try this Southwestern Beef Chili with Corn recipe. High in protein and fibre, this lunch will keep them going for hours. Pack it with a handful of Tortilla Chips for dipping for an added surprise treat.

Rotate soups throughout the school year to keep it interesting. When winter weather sets in, and in Calgary it probably won't be that long, this delicious and incredibly simple Winter Lentil Soup recipe will hit the spot. The ingredients in this recipe pack a tonne of nutrition into a small serving, boasting huge amounts of vitamin A, fibre and vegetarian sourced protein and calcium. This recipe also freezes well; just get out the night before and thaw before reheating and placing in their thermos.

Have fun with Sandwich Kebobs which creatively use a wooden skewer to build a sandwich that kids can easily eat. Pair with kid-friendly eat-n-go foods like apple slices, pretzels, and carrot sticks.

My boys love bento-box style lunches. Here's an easy combo to pack: blueberries, whole grain crackers, sliced cheese, cucumber slices, hummus, and a hard boiled egg or rolled-up turkey meat. They can choose what and how much to eat between their snack breaks and lunch. For a beverage, send a tetra-pack chocolate -or- white milk.



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