Erin goes to nursery at a private school and usually she has a hot school lunch with the rest of the students. However, when the main school breaks up at the beginning of July the hot lunches stop and this means we have about 9 weeks of making packed lunches instead. I find it really hard to think about different things to include every day, especially as we have a Yumbox which has 6 different sections to fill every day.
I’m sure there are loads of parents out there like me, who need a bit of inspiration so I thought I’d write about some of the products we have been using a lot this summer.
I find making regular sandwiches every day pretty boring and I don’t really like Erin to have the same thing 2 days in a row, if I can help it. Last month we started trying different bread products and these Deli Kitchen Sandwich Thins have been a really big hit. I always thought that Erin preferred white bread but she’s been devouring the wholemeal variety.
These sandwich thins cut up nicely into 4 smaller squares which fit really well in a Yumbox. As soon as John saw the sandwich thins he was pretty interested in them too so they have quickly become a family favourite!
Erin can go through real phases with fruit. Some weeks, like this week, she will constantly ask for all different kinds of fruit but sometimes she’s just not that bothered at all. Luckily, we are able to send her to nursery with Del Monte Squeezies. These come in three different flavours and count as 1 of your 5 a day. Not only are they a big help for getting in everything toddlers need but they are also a delicious snack for summer when chilled!
Something Erin has been eating for a long time now is oat bars. Up until quite recently she has been having the toddler versions but we have since branched out to Nakd bars. These bars come in a large variety of delicious flavours and they are made from natural ingredients like nuts, fruits and oats. Nakd bars are fantastic for adding variety to lunchboxes while knowing that there are no bad ingredients in them. These are another product that John has also been using for his own lunches too so they’re great for the whole family.
Erin loves crisps but it’s so easy to let her have the wrong kinds. Veggie and fruit crisps are really quite popular now but there are very few options available for children. We were introduced to Nim’s Fruit Crisps recently and they have their very own children’s range. The crisps come in three flavours; apple, courgette and pear and count as 1 of your 5 a day. The crisps are air dried, not fried and absolutely delicious. I may have stolen a few of the apple crisps when I was setting up Erin’s lunchbox one day!
I’m always looking for something sweet to add into Erin’s lunchbox but I don’t like to give her too many sweets or chocolates. A good alternative are JellySqueeze pouches or Fruitypots with either jelly or juice as there are 9 varieties in total across the 2 ranges. The Fruitypots come with their own spoon and the pouches can be resealed so they’re great for lunchboxes!
Lastly, we have something really quite different; Lotus Bites. These are made from popped lotus seeds, use only natural ingredients and come in three different flavours; pineapple, organic turmeric and tomato & beetroot. Now, I’ll be completely honest here and say that Erin wasn’t really a fan. That doesn’t mean that other children won’t be though if they like slightly stronger flavours. Even though Erin hasn’t been eating these, John has! He loves them and they have been making a great snack for him.
Don’t be put off by the fact that Erin didn’t like them though because all children are different and if all else fails, eat them yourself.
What do you like to put in your child’s lunchbox? I’d love to get some fresh ideas for the next set of holidays!
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Disclaimer: We received products for the purpose of this post. All opinions are our own.