I’ve written a couple posts on packing lunches. It has been something I have done every school day for the past 7 years, and I think I have finally found the best way to pack a lunch.
Last year I ditched plastic baggies and bought containers with lids. It was a step in the right direction, but not quite what I wanted. I quickly found washing out all those small containers and keeping track of their lids made lunch making more of a chore than it should be. I’m all about efficiency, working smarter not harder, and keeping things simple. A bunch of lids and containers was not smart, simple or efficient.
This year before school started, I was on a mission. I wanted to find something different that would keep me from going back to baggies but that would be just as simple as baggies. These lunch kit containers from Sistema were the perfect find. They are affordable and a huge plus– BPA free!
The school lunches I make for my girls 90% of the time start with sandwich & something crunchy–tortilla chips, crackers, pretzels–free from artificial colors, preservatives, and high fructose corn syrup. I think this habit stems from the school lunches I had as a young girl. I always loved a crunch along with my sandwich. The other 10% of the time I throw soup or leftovers into a thermos.
These containers have a large area for a sandwich, with an attached lid/divider that keeps the sandwich safe and your chips from tasting like peanut butter. My girls favorite bread is an oat bread & I use a peanut butter with no hydrogenated oils or corn syrup in it. If you make a cheese or meat sandwich, this small blue ice pack is perfect for putting right on top of the sandwich. I place a paper towel in between the sandwich and the ice pack, but I have found it is not necessary as these ice packs do not ‘sweat.’
I use the second compartment for something crunchy, and the 3rd area for some type of bar (store bought or homemade) or cut up veggies. A cut kiwi with a spoon fits nicely in there–I just cut it in half, unpeeled, and my girls scoop the fruit out with a spoon, using the peel as a bowl when they eat it. Carrot sticks are another great item for that compartment.
I like to add a piece of fruit on the side. A nectarine, banana, or apple. Having a fruit and veggie gives my girls a head start on eating their daily rainbow.
See how the container shuts so nicely into a compact square. Hearing the ‘snap’ of the lid after packing their lunch in the morning gives me such a satisfied feeling.
This BUILT Neoprene Lunch Tote bag is really cute. It belongs to my now FRESHMAN girl. When did my Teagan get so old?
When did I get so old?
This water bottle fits nicely alongside the sandwich container. Usually my girls just get a cup of water at school, which leaves that area free for fruit.
This system is the best, most efficient way I have found to streamline the chore of not only packing lunches, but also emptying them out and cleaning the containers for the next day. They can be placed in the dishwasher, but I find a quick rinse is easy and enough, making sure they get cleaned with hot water and soap at least a couple times a week.
Do you pack lunches? What do you use to hold the food?
What are your kids favorite foods to eat in their lunches?
Would you like to try out the Sistema Lunch Cube lunch container? If so, Amazon has a great deal on them, and if you order them through this link I will get a small percentage which would support New Nostalgia & make me happy!
Ok…I said I didn’t want a bunch of little lids to wash…but I might make an exception with these super cute sauce-to-go containers! My girls would love them filled with ranch dressing for dipping those veggies, and I would love that I can control the portion size.
More on school lunches at New Nostalgia: