School is back in session! So this month, as part of our Food Blogger Bites series, we asked the Top 100 Mom Food Bloggers what their go-to school lunches to make for the kids are. You won’t find soggy PB&Js and pre-packaged snacks in these lucky kids’ lunch boxes! Get inspired by these moms’ tips, and find out their favorite recipes for brown-baggin’-it, after the jump!
Back-to-school Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie 1 of 20My go-to school lunches are smoothies. I have a stash already made in the freezer, and when it's time to pack a bag, I just throw one in. By the time my daughter's lunch rolls around, it is chilled
Get the recipe at In Sock Monkey Slippers
Vegetarian Sushi 2 of 20Leftover sushi from dinner the night before. The kids love it, and it's a nice change from toasted gluten-free bread, which lets face it, ain't the nicest thing to eat after a few hours in their bags! It's also really quick to get ready in the morning, as all the work is done the
Get the recipe at My Darling Lemon Thyme
Sweet Potatoes with Goat Cheese and Sage 3 of 20My kids don't like sandwiches that much. So when we pack lunch for school, picnics, or road trips, I often have plastic containers with different cold salads. Black beans and sweet potatoes are favorites. Cold quesadillas are also a hit.
Get the recipe at Whipped
Sunbutter 4 of 20Anything with sunbutter — it's a bit healthier than peanut butter, easy to whip up yourself, and totally safe for allergy-free environments. We also make a lot of homemade granola bars.
Get the recipe at Prudent Baby
Whatever-you’ve-got Muffins 5 of 20Muffins! A batch of whatever-you've-got muffins can be baked on Sunday from any number of sweet or savory combinations and tucked into lunchboxes throughout the week. Kids love muffins, so you can get away with adding a lot of sneaky stuff they'd never eat on its own. Plus, I know my girl sucks down her lunch as fast as possible (sigh) ... so at least this way I know I can get some quality energy into her before playtime.
Get the recipe at Easy Peasy Organic
Rosemary Bread Rolls Stuffed with Cheese and Chili Paste 6 of 20For school lunches, I like to give small boxes that pack a variety. This usually includes one fruit, some cheese, yogurt, and perhaps a sweet treat. These rosemary bread rolls stuffed with cheese (omit the chili) fit the bill and also freeze well.
Get the recipe at Sips and Spoonfuls
Summer Lunch Caprese Sandwich with Balsamic Tomatoes 7 of 20We are all about cold sandwiches, vegetables, and a salty treat. This summer lunch caprese sandwich is one of my favorites!
Get the recipe at The Naptime Chef
Breakfast Quesadillas 8 of 20When it comes to school lunch, I try to change it up as much as I can. My favorite school lunch, though, is super simple: a hard boiled egg, hummus & pita chips, a bunch of veggies for dipping, fruit, and a hunk of cheese. It's perfect! At home, I tend to whip up quesadillas (and stuff them with leftovers or veggies) or some other easy
Get the recipe at One Hungry Mama
Meatball and Spaghetti Soup 9 of 20My picky daughter was never one for sandwiches, so I always packed a thermos with one of her favorite hot soups. Meatball and spaghetti soup is one of her favorites.
Get the recipe at Skinnytaste
Lebanese Hummus 10 of 20Our daughter loves hummus with pita bread so I make it for her lunch often. Add in some carrots and fruit and she's a happy camper. In fact, I've been "supplying" her teachers with jars of this hummus, too! I always have several cans of garbanzo beans and a jar of tahini in the cupboard just for this recipe.
Get the recipe at Taking On Magazines
Savory Zucchini Muffins 11 of 20That will have to be either savory muffins, like my savory zucchini muffins, or a frittata. They are very easy to carry in a lunchbox and they are delicious when eaten at room temperature. With this recipe, you can have your kids eating vegetables and actually enjoying them! I think they make for a nutritious, healthy, and fun meal.
Get the recipe at Manu's Menu
Paneer-matar Parathas 12 of 20My little one's current favorite is paneer-matar paratha. The whole-wheat flat bread is stuffed with crumbled paneer (an Indian cottage cheese) and mashed green peas which are mildly seasoned with aromatic Indian spices. The stuffed flat bread is then pan fried with a generous drizzle of ghee (Indian clarified butter). Apart from being high in nutrition, this paneer-matar paratha can be served hot or cold with a dollop of butter and love! Bonus: they can be easily stored in the freezer for up to a month.
Get the recipe at Monsoon Spice
Honey Whole Wheat Pretzels 13 of 20My "go-to" lunch snack for my kids are my honey whole wheat pretzels. We homeschool, and one of the benefits of this has been that it's a little easier for my kids to eat wholesome, healthy meals. We are always packing up, however, to go on field trips and road trips. I like to make these pretzels with a side of cut-up vegetables and hummus for them to dip into with chunks of the pretzels. They're about as much fun to make as they are to eat!
Get the recipe at Snippets of Thyme
Quinoa Salad 14 of 20My children are under school age, but our go-to picnic meal is quinoa salad (I make it with couscous when I'm pinched for time) or veggie sandwiches with veggie sticks and fruit on the side.
Get the recipe at Delightful Delicacies
Almost-like-muffin-tops Cookies 15 of 20Lunches are not too strenuous in our house because the kids like a variety of things, but I do struggle to find relatively healthy treats that my boys don't get bored with. This is especially difficult because my younger son can't tolerate dairy products. Cue the almost-like-muffin-tops cookie, something I invented that is nutritious, filling, and still tastes like a treat.
Get the recipe at Lip Smacking
Tamagoyaki 16 of 20My son will start bringing lunch this year and I'm going to alternate between making sandwiches and Japanese bento. Some of his favorite dishes I will include in his bento are tamagoyaki (Japanese rolled omelette) and chicken karaage!
Get the recipe at Just One Cookbook
Sunflower Seed Cookies 17 of 20I make something different for the kids every day, but they really love to find a homemade treat in their lunchbox. My sunflower seed cookies are a favorite.
Get the recipe at Baked Bree
Cherry Tomato, Garlic Confit, and Anchovy Tart 18 of 20I think the majority of my kids' food complaints come from the lame school lunches that I give them. There's so much potential for soggy, leaky messes. Luckily, we makes lots of tarts and pizzas and we always have leftovers in the freezer so it's super easy to heat up a slice in the morning. Another popular choice is what we call "picnic lunch" which includes olives, chunks of cheese, nuts, salami, and baguette with butter. And on the rare occasion that I give my kids gooey chocolate chip cookies in their lunch, they'll do absolutely anything for me.
Get the recipe at Dash and Bella
Circle Bread 19 of 20Only one of my three kidlets is actually in school and most days he just wants a pretty simple lunch that he doesn't have to think about — sandwich, fruit, vegetables, water and maybe a small piece of candy or treat that he gets to eat if he finishes his lunch (and yes, he obeys that law!). While the sandwich choices vary according to mood and what we have on hand, it is always on a thin roll we like to call circle bread. It's basically a multi-grain or honey wheat bun that is smashed thin and pricked before baking. My kids are convinced circle bread is better because: A) they are thin and therefore less to eat, and B) they have no crusty edges because they are round! Hey, I'm not going to disagree since they're good for them and easy
Get the recipe at Phe-MOM-enon
Bento-style Lunch Box 20 of 20I always go with a bento-style lunch for Trey, who will be entering first grade this year. I use little brightly colored cups filled with raw veggie sticks and mini meatball lollipops along with the usual treat and a drink. It's nothing spectacular, but he's six and is generally unimpressed by most food, unless it involves chocolate frosting.
Get the recipe at Kate from Scratch
Want more? Check out August’s question: What’s your all-time favorite recipe?