Lunchbox snacks need to be healthy, tasty and adhere to school guidelines. Find out how to pack great snacks that will be eaten every time and see our easy recipes to make those snacks on a budget. Children have ever changing palates and what they loved yesterday may not be on their menu today. Here are some favourites which may help in the morning rush.
Air-popped popcorn is sugar-free, fat-free and sodium free! It’s almost a miracle that kids love it. Buy it pre-packaged for couple of dollars or pop your own at home. Popcorn makers are inexpensive and you can add little sea salt or even seasoning like chicken salt for extra flavour.
Fresh or dried fruit
Keep your portions small, peel and cut the fruit, serve it chilled and make sure that it’s packaged well to handle the journey. A bag of hot grapes or a squashed banana will boomerang home to the bin every time.
Low –fat yoghurt can be found in convenience tubs or you can make your own yoghurt at home and flavour it with fresh fruit. Send it chilled and pop an ice pack into the lunchbox with it to keep it cool. Have a supply of disposable spoons to go with the yoghurt. You don’t want to be growing your own live cultures in that lunchbox.
Rice or corn cakes
These versatile cakes can be found in thick and thin varieties and make a great crunchy way to deliver a snack. You can spread them with vegemite or even cream cheese. They are sold in flavoured varieties but these are often high in salt and additives so try to stick to the plain varieties and rev up the flavour with spreads and toppings.
You can pack cherry tomatoes, carrots sticks, celery filled with cream cheese, cucumber batons and blanched snow peas. The list is as long as what your children will eat. To make it a little more interesting, why not include a small tub of dip or yoghurt to make the veggies appealing.
Bakery items can be made or bought and if you wrap them tightly in cling film and freeze you can have a week long supply on hand. Muffins, scones, raisin bread, pikelets, cheese and bacon rolls, banana bread and fruit buns all make great lunchbox fillers.
Tiny nutritious bites that are usually eaten for breakfast can also make an appearance as a great snack for school. Make it wholegrain and low in sugar and salt and you are on a winner. If you have a child that refuses breakfast this may also work well for you. Send along some low-fat flavoured milk to compliment it.