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Make the Most of Your Lunches with Yumbox
This week we are so excited to have collaborated with our friend Laura Schmidt who is a local dietitian. Laura and I went to high school together, and I've really enjoyed to get to know her better as we have gotten older. I love her Instagram because she has practical meal ideas for busy weeknights, and now that I'm about to have a baby, I'm excited to get advice from her about feeding babies and toddlers.
Do you enjoy packing lunches or is it something you dread? I guess it's the dietitian in me, but MOST of the time, I really enjoy it. When my daughter started preschool, I wanted to find a lunch box that was bento style to allow me to provide her a variety of foods, that don’t touch. If you have a toddler you get this. I came across the Yumbox and knew I had to have one.
I love that the one we use gives suggestions of food groups for each compartment. These just help me make sure I’m offering my daughter a variety of nutritious foods she can choose from. Other benefits of the Yumboxes are they are dishwasher safe and environmentally friendly. If you typically pack lunches in zip top bags, you can think of how many you would save over the course of the school year by swapping to a bento style box.
Here is a guide to use when packing lunches as well as some real life examples. Yumbox also makes adult-sized boxes which are great to establish portion control at meals. I was excited for Needle and Grain to carry these locally, they make a great non-toy option for a birthday party gift.
When packing lunches for school it's always good to be aware of your school’s nut policy which some of these options contain but sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sun butter and roasted chickpeas are all good options if you have a child with a nut allergy or attend a nut free school
Real Life Lunch Box Ideas
Entree Style Lunch Box-
- Pasta salad, hard boiled egg, hummus with veggies & chocolate covered sunflower seeds
- Turkey roll ups using whole grain tortilla, sweet potato chips and berries
- PB or sunbutter sandwich, carrots with guacamole, small orange and blue corn chips
- Waffle sandwich with cream cheese or peanut butter, roasted chickpeas, yogurt with fruit & hemp seeds, cucumbers & chocolate covered sunflower seeds
Smaller Portion Box-
- PB or hummus on whole grain crackers, string cheese, green peas, blueberries and energy ball
- Whole grain muffin, vanilla greek yogurt with pumpkin puree, pistachios, carrot shreds and watermelon
- Chicken salad, blue corn chips, grapes, broccoli and sliced avocado
- Deli meat rolls, hummus, pretzels, cheese, snap peas and raspberries
Use this chart to create a variety of lunch combos. I like to try to include one food from each category. Some foods are what I consider to be a “combo food” like eggs contain fat and protein, whole milk yogurt contains some carbs, fat and protein etc.
Laura lives in Columbia, TN, and she works with clients of all ages. She was diagnosed with Celiac Disease at the age of 13, so she has always had a knack for good nutrition no matter the diagnosis. She loves helping people meal plan for the week and even go grocery shopping with you to make good choices!