Lunch

The first week of school is a magical time. When else does the smell of freshly sharpened pencils and feel of crisp folders spark excitement in kids across the nation? Unfortunately, there’s one thing that typically elicits kids to groan rather than smile during the first week of school – cafeteria lunches.

Yes, school lunches have kinda, sorta improved over the years, but seriously – nothing beats a homemade lunch. Make back-to-school week groan-free by preparing a few of these easy-make school lunches.

“Make over the weekend” lunches

With a little prep, you can make batches of cottage cheese, crackers, cookies, yogurt, and hummus that will last all week!

Homemade hummus, dippable veggies, and fresh, homemade cookies

Whip up a batch of creamy raw tahini hummus. Then quickly cut up fresh veggies from the garden. Bake a few sheets of rustic, homemade crackers and a tray of homemade cookies.

Pretzel kabobs

Roll up thin slices of organic turkey or ham, and locally produced organic cheese. Pin pieces together with a rustic pretzel stick. Add a sweet side: homemade yogurt and an organic apple!

Quick fix lunches

You completely spaced this weekend and forgot that it was back-to-school week. Just search your fridge and cabinet — you’re bound to find a few of the following items! Throw ‘em together, toss in a bag and voila – lunch in less than 10 minutes.

Strawberry and cream cheese sandwich, with cinnamon sprinkled oranges

Cut up fresh strawberries. Spread organic cream cheese on your choice of bread. Grab a bag and quickly fill it with that peanut butter granola you made a few weeks ago. Then, take an orange, and peel and slice. Sprinkle cinnamon on top of the slices.

Butter and jelly sandwich, with cottage cheese and fruit

Spread almond, peanut, or cashew butter atop bread, and add homemade preserves. As a side: take some homemade cottage cheese you made last week and add slices of seasonal, local fruit.

Resources:

http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/features/healthy-lunchbox-tips

http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/collections/healthy_kids_lunch_recipes

http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/recipes/quick-recipes/lunch/healthy-homemade-lunches-your-kids-will-love/

http://www.healthychild.com/rediscovering-the-homemade-lunch

Image: zcopley