This post was sponsored by my friends at Chobani. Written 100% by me.
Whether you love it or hate it, it’s that time of year again…packing your kids’ lunch. So you need lunch ideas, right?
When it comes to packing lunch boxes, I try to streamline things as much as possible, making sure I hit on most of the food groups, while including whole foods with minimal added sugar and protein foods. Here’s the lowdown on five easy lunch, breakfast and snack ideas for kids as they go back to school that are good for them and that they’ll actually want to eat.
1. Put it in a bento box
Bento boxes, a type of lunch box, make your life easier, as long as you go with a simple two-piece model, and are more fun for your kids. Plus you’re saving the earth from a gazillion plastic bags. You can fit in a protein food like a sandwich or Greek yogurt pouch, and two side dishes, like fruit, vegetable sticks or whole-grain crackers. Chobani Mezé Dips are a creamy accompaniment to veggie sticks, too, and taste so good.
2. Choose foods with minimal added sugar
Most schools are emphasizing their wellness policies and they don’t want us sending cookies or candy. Instead of dessert, I add a Greek yogurt tube or pouch, which is a great protein food.
My two-year old isn’t a huge sandwich eater, except eating just the melted cheese or jelly. So for her I’ll often include a Chobani Tots pouch as her ”main dish,” which contains 4 grams of protein and nothing artificial.
3. Breakfast protein
Almost every morning, Stella “bellies up to the bar” and enjoys a Chobani Fruit on the Bottom. But whatever I do, I can’t stir it, unless I want to deal with her meltdown. She likes to eat it the way it was intended, spooning the plain yogurt with a bit of fruit puree from the bottom. Kids are so funny! Chobani Greek Yogurt contains twice as much protein of regular yogurt due to the authentic straining process used to make it, which is a great way to start the day, as many of us fall short on protein at breakfast. I pair it with a seasonal fruit on the side, like blueberries.
4. Super portable snacks
I always keep a box of yogurt tubes in the fridge, and Chobani Kids Greek Yogurt tubes are a family favorite. A Chobani yogurt tube is more nutrient-rich than grabbing the typical bag of crackers or pretzels, with those probiotics that may help support digestive health.
5. Presentation is everything
Remember that kids’ nervous systems are still developing, so they can’t handle typical everyday disturbances like adults can. For example, my toddler will lose it if she sees distinguishable green herbs in her food. Many kids, including mine, want to see their favorite colors, characters and homogeneous foods (i.e. not mixed together). So give them what they want.
I love how Chobani incorporates wholesome characters like Winnie the Pooh, Spider Man, The Lion King and Superman and Superwoman—thank you for that. And since practically anything served in a pouch or tube is more appealing to younger kids, you have it made with Chobani Kids and Chobani Tots, which the latter is made with real fruit and vegetables and whole milk Greek yogurt, plus 12 mg of the omega 3 DHA.
And if you’re looking for a little afternoon nutritious indulgence before you pick up the kiddies, check out Chobani’s Flip Greek yogurt. Get the chocolate, coconut, or almonds (and more!) that you crave with the punch of protein, too.
Next time you’re at the grocery store, stock up on a variety of Chobani Kids, Tots and Cups to cover all of your mealtime occasion bases.
Note about the lunchbox featured at the top of the post: This lunch is in a Yumbox (free sample I received), my daughters’ new favorite. I love that it is leakproof.
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