Tips for Packing a Healthy, Low-waste Lunchbox

Inspiring and simple solutions for school or office lunchboxes, that fuel the brain and satisfy the tummy.  

The lunchbox is often disregarded as a tedious chore, rushed through in precious morning minutes. With a bit of inspiration and a new understanding of mid-day nutrition, packing a healthy, wholesome lunch can become easier and more manageable. 

Research shows that a nutritious lunch improves behaviour and concentration in the classroom, as well as, strengthens immunity, supports overall wellbeing and lowers the risk of obesity. Children have high energy requirements, so they need nutrient dense foods (that are tasty too!) to fuel their brains and bodies.

Here is a list of tips and solutions to support a new, positive outlook on the importance of creating a healthy lunchbox. For all the super parents out there, doing their best, we are here to support you with this important task. 

Tips for a New, Positive Mindset Regarding the Lunchbox

For all the super parents out there, doing their best, we are here to support you with this important task. Let’s get started.

1. PLAN AHEAD.

Any good lunchbox starts with a plan. Planning ahead supports healthy food choices, especially on busy mornings. Spend a bit of time each Sunday prepping for the week ahead. If you’re not sure what this would look like, keep reading.  

2. HAVE A BAKING DAY.

Choose a day to bake each week, most likely on the weekend. Depending on the age, get the kids to help or give them a simple recipe to try on their own.  Look for low-sugar recipes filled with wholefoods that are nutrient dense.

Here are a few of our favourites:  Raw Peanut Butter BrowniesChocolate Bliss BallsACV Gummies or Peanut Butter Cinnamon Caramel Popcorn. Anytime you bake, freeze a few servings  to throw into lunchboxes when needed. It’s a lifesaver!

3. MAKE YOUR OWN ‘PREPACKS’.

Use reusable containers or beeswax wraps to make your own pre packs. On Sunday, wash, peel and prep vegetable sticks. Carrots are ideal, as they keep all week if stored in a container covered in water. Use beeswax wraps to make single servings of crackers, corn chips, pretzels, granola or trail mix.

4. GO PLASTIC FREE.

It seems hard to swallow the price, but if you invest in a high-quality lunchbox, it saves you time and money later on. There are endless options of bento-style lunchboxes available or use a stackable lunch box with individual containers. This allows for small, loose portions to suit your child’s appetite without using extra wrapping or single serve packaging. Beeswax wraps are perfect for keeping sandwiches or wraps fresh. 

5. THE WELL-BALANCED LUNCHBOX.

Include all 5 food groups.  A nutritious lunch will include a good source of fibre and whole grains, some protein and healthy fat, a veggie or two;), a piece of fresh fruit and occasionally a little treat. Make a list of family-friendly foods, that fit into each food category, i.e. protein: roasted nuts, boiled egg, salami or cheese chunks, etc, to reference when in a rush. 

6. INCLUDE THE RAINBOW.

The body thrives on variety. A colourful lunch ensures it’s providing a healthy variety of nutrients. This is where creativity with fruits and vegetables come into play. Here are a few ideas to get you started: carrot or capsicum sticks, cucumber slices, beetroot hummus or carrot dip, cherry tomatoes, green beans, berries, citrus, or avocado & crackers. 

7. CHOOSE ORGANIC WHEN YOU CAN.

Choosing organic foods is healthier, safer, and supports the planet. However, for many reasons, it’s not always an option. Start with swapping one lunchbox item to organic. Read our blog 7 Simple Steps to Going Organic for some inspiration..

8. HEALHTY HYDRATION.

Water is essential to a well-functioning body and boosts brain power! The best (and cheapest!) option for lunchboxes is a bottle of water. Find the perfect eco-friendly water bottle from this amazing little NZ company. To keep kids drinking, change it up with a slice of lemon, orange or cucumber or cooled herbal tea.

9. PLANT-BASED SANDWICHES.

Let’s think outside the (bread) box on this one! Get creative by using a wrap, pita, bagel or big round corn cracker to make sandwich. Make it plant-based with these yummy options: Tahini + sliced apple, Tahini+ banana + honey, PB + Jam or hummus, grated carrot and lettuce.  

Super Mum’s Tip: Slice an apple into rounds, spread with nut butter, and sprinkle with granola. Apple sandwich!

Let these handy tips and your new found appreciation for lunch, inspire amazing lunchboxes for both the kids and yourself. What small change will you make this week?  

To receive monthly recipes and sustainable living inspiration directly to your inbox, sign up to our newsletter at the bottom of this page.

PRODUCTS MENTIONED

plow-left
Tahini Whole
plow-left
Classic Smooth Peanut Butter
plow-left
Apple Cider Vinegar

RELATED ARTICLES