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Spill the beans... on cheap, nutritious back to school lunchboxes

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Spill the beans... on cheap, nutritious back to school lunchboxes

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Former_MSE_DebsFormer_MSE_Debs
890 posts
Spill the beans... on cheap, nutritious back to school lunchboxes
[IMGRIGHT]http://images.moneysavingexpert.com/images/spillthebeans2.gif[/IMGRIGHT]

It'll soon be back to school time for many (in Scotland, some are already there). So we thought we'd ask people to share their cheap, nutritious packed lunch ideas that the kids won't just throw in the bin.


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  • K8eeK8ee Forumite
    6 posts
    I was trying to post this on the breadmaker thread but have lost it.
    I make rolls with my breadmaker for lunchboxes. They are tailored in size the younger one has 12 rolls per batch of dough, the older has 8. They can have plain or flavoured bread - current favourite for the younger is a Hot Cross Bun fruit bread (without the crosses). I make the rolls and freeze them ready for use. Meanwhile, every Sunday evening they each make a (most frequently chocolate) Victoria Sandwich (or other cake if they prefer) which they decorate as they wish, and each day they take a piece of their own cake of the week. Lasts until Friday in airtight tin. They are excellent and creative cooks (aged 10 & 13). Making it for themselves gives them choice, cooking skills, and they eat it as they wanted it in the first place. We always have a cooked meal at teatime which I've made from meat/veg so I'm not too worried about the protein etc. which they will get later. They don't seem to have any pressure from others about content - probably because they enjoy what they have. Crisps? - just once a week - on the way to music lessons after school.
  • For me all i do is ask them what they would like on their sandwiches the night before, I ask which fruit they would like, them I make up a sandwich as per their fillings, add fruit requested, yoghurt (smart price), drink made up at home and put into their own bottle, bag of the cheapest crisps, and a cereal bar for their snack. Snack bars are bought and stocked up whenever they are on offer or can be bought very cheaply. Sometimes I will make flapjack or muffins etc which they have instead of crisps or cereal bar etc. Defo no chocolate though
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  • cutestkidscutestkids Forumite
    1.7K posts
    Eighth Anniversary
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    My two always have packed lunches as the school dinners are horrid.

    Some of the things they take are.

    Sandwiches or rolls filed with any of the following-

    Tuna
    Cheese
    Ham
    Salad
    Cheese spread such as Philly
    If I have done a roast chicken then use that in as well.

    Pots of humous, salsa, with pitta bread, veg sticks carrot, pepper, cucumber, celery.

    Tubs of chopped cheese with grapes and a few little mini sausages or sausage rolls.

    Wraps with various fillings.

    Always some fruit usually an apple with one other thing like a plum, a few strawberries or a small satsuma.

    Dried fruit, raisins, apricot etc.

    Fromage frais or yoghurt.

    Sometimes crisps or some pretzels, breadsticks or ritz crackers
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  • edited 29 August 2012 at 2:53PM
    Fire_FoxFire_Fox Forumite
    25.9K posts
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited 29 August 2012 at 2:53PM
    Don't put more than ONE SMALL junk/ processed/ sugary/ fatty item in the lunchbox even if they are homemade. It is recommended that these comprise no more than 10% of daily calories which is a lot less than you might think, 150 to 200 calories per day depending on the age and appetite of the child.

    There are many different delicious dried fruits available now - my personal favourites are sour cherries, pears and sun dried (unsweetened) pineapple; nuts and seeds are packed with protein, minerals, fibre and healthy fats and go well with dried fruits. These can be made into flapjacks with jumbo oats, wheatgerm, creamed coconut instead of all butter, a little natural sugar substitutes such as xylitol or stevia.
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  • I purchased a mini thermos a few years ago, DD takes hers every day.

    It's soup 9/10 times. I make one batch of soup a week and then freeze, so she can alternate what she has during the week. The soup is cheap, filling and nutritious and nice in winter when it's chilly. All she needs is a roll or cheese and crackers and that will fill her up for lunch. You can also fill with stews or pasta salad.
  • using a small screw on tupper wear pot. i put tinned or fresh fruit in the bottom topped up with jelly to cover fruit or custard or packet moose. can make up for the week. gwd for fruit avoiders.
    Bananas wont last a week without going brown.
  • When I was younger in winter my Dad used to pack me up a Thermos with a jacket potato wrapped in foil inside! It used to stay hot until lunch and was brilliant! :j
  • nzmegsnzmegs Forumite
    1.1K posts
    If you really want your kids to be healthy and properly full up after their lunch - not high on sugar and carbs - try the following ideas:

    sliced ham, chicken or meat with a pot of full fat mayonnaise, a pot of berries with real whipped cream, full fat greek yoghurt with a sprinkling of chopped nuts, chicken legs or thighs with the skin on, a small pack of mixed nuts, sliced avocado salad or avocado dip with vegetables.

    Don't give them wheat based products like cakes, bread, wraps, rolls and the like. You are setting them up for diabetes and stomach complaints.

    Processed foods which are aimed at kids are often full of extra sugars - avoid them. Kids (and adults) need high fat foods with no sugar. Believe me you will see a reduction in poor concentration, bad behaviour and after school hunger.
  • retepetsirretepetsir Forumite
    1.1K posts
    nzmegs wrote: »
    If you really want your kids to be healthy and properly full up after their lunch - not high on sugar and carbs - try the following ideas:

    sliced ham, chicken or meat with a pot of full fat mayonnaise, a pot of berries with real whipped cream, full fat greek yoghurt with a sprinkling of chopped nuts, chicken legs or thighs with the skin on, a small pack of mixed nuts, sliced avocado salad or avocado dip with vegetables.

    Don't give them wheat based products like cakes, bread, wraps, rolls and the like. You are setting them up for diabetes and stomach complaints.

    Processed foods which are aimed at kids are often full of extra sugars - avoid them. Kids (and adults) need high fat foods with no sugar. Believe me you will see a reduction in poor concentration, bad behaviour and after school hunger.

    Wheat based products will not give someone diabetes :o, its all about things in moderation.

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  • Wraps with lots of salad and just a bit of meat. Flavoured mayo is good too.
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