Apart from the fact that mothers have to get up earlier than anyone else to get the children ready for school, mothers are also saddled with the job of making lunch. Now let’s face it: Slapping the same smears on bread, or making rice and noodles day after day, week after week can leave kids and parents a little bored.
Here are five ideas for lunches that take cues from home and abroad. Try them all with your little eaters (or yourself!) to find new, interesting lunch box variations that keep everyone’s appetites healthy.
Peanut Butter and Banana Breakfast Sandwich
Creamy peanut butter and bananas are the key ingredients to this quick and easy breakfast. Toast bread. While toast is still warm, spread 2 teaspoons of the peanut butter on each slice. Arrange banana slices on one of the slices of peanut butter toast. Top with the other slice, peanut butter side down, to make a sandwich.
Avocado Egg Salad Sandwiches
Lighten up classic egg salad by swapping in creamy avocado instead of using mayonnaise. Sandwich it between toasted whole-wheat bread and you’ve got an easy, packable lunch ready for work or school. Scoop the flesh from the avocado half into a medium bowl. Add lemon juice and oil; mash until mostly smooth. Add chopped eggs, celery, chives, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Divide the mixture between 2 slices of toast. Top each with a piece of lettuce and another slice of toast.
Egg & Waffle Bento Box
Who doesn’t love breakfast for lunch? Make it to-go with this easy bento box idea that combines waffles, eggs and fruit for a satisfying and fun meal that kids and adults alike will love. Using a cookie cutter or a knife, cut waffles into heart shapes. Place in a section of the bento box along with maple syrup. Using the tip of a small paring knife, cut egg into a zig-zag pattern around the center, being careful not to poke through the egg yolk. Use currants to make eyes and lemon zest to make a nose, if desired. Combine strawberries and blueberries in another compartment. Place cantaloupe or avocado in the remaining compartment.
Bread with Peanut Butter
This quick-and-easy snack is a hearty treat that is packed with protein and has heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. Spread 1 slice of whole-wheat bread with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter.
Yogurt Parfait Bento Box
Yogurt provides the filling protein base for this colorful lunch box, but the remaining ingredients are very flexible to accommodate your child’s tastes. You can replace the cereal or granola with dried fruit, and swap steamed vegetables for the cherry tomatoes and cucumber. Pack yogurt in a medium section of a bento-style lunch box or a medium container. Pack cherry tomatoes and cucumber in another medium section of the bento box or in another medium container. Pack granola and cereal in separate smaller sections of the bento box or in small containers. Pack blueberries and strawberries in another small section of the bento box or in a small container.