It’s that time of the year, again… While you are getting prepared for back to school and the return of the lunchbox, one question is striking back, again and again, year after year. How to get started and how to make it through the school year?
The good news is that if you are reading this post, you’ve already joined teuko.com. Connecting to other parents facing the same struggle is the very first step towards a better experience. Congratulations! Sharing tips and tricks is also what we expect from a strong and powerful community. That’s why we’ve just selected for you 5 lunchbox hacks popular among Teuko top contributors. Explore them all and tell us which one you are ready to commit to this school year. For more tips and inspiration, read the complete testimonies on the blog!
#1 Write down a list of foods that your kid likes to eat.
It all starts with grocery shopping, there is no way to avoid it. How to make it fast and efficient? Making a list before shopping is the best way to ensure that you have the right food at home. Don’t hesitate to involve your kids in the selection of the food items they like the most. Even better, have them shop with you and select a new food item to try every week and boost their curiosity! Make every trip to the store an opportunity to store “lunchbox-friendly” food items so that you make sure you always have a last-minute packed lunch on hand.
Teuko tip: if you have already started your lunchbox journal on Teuko, simply scroll all the ideas with your kids and save their favorites. This way you will get visual inspiration of kid-approved lunches and foods that you can rotate. You also will get an easy access to your grocery list, food by food.
#2 Stock ready-to-pack food.
Ready-to-pack food refers to leftovers as well as canned and frozen food.
We’ve already covered in a previous blog post how canned food and frozen food could help you to organize a lunchbox survival kit in your pantry (read article). If you get the opportunity to cook, make every cooking day an opportunity to stock your freezer!
Leftovers are your friends. There is no shame in serving kids the same food for dinner and for lunch for several days in a row. An easy trick is to use different ways of preparing and packing the same food in order to make it more appealing.
Tacos from Tuesday dinner can get turned into a taco quesadilla for lunch on Wednesday, for example.Rasa, United States
#3 Accessories make it more fun
If you have been packing lunch for several years, you will agree: getting the right accessories at hand can help you pack faster. So take some time to update and organize your kitchen with all the accessories you need to pack 5 days a week.
Having a divided sections tray … really helps me on a daily basis. I find it easier to remember to give vegetables and fruit when you have sections to fill. Also my kid doesn’t like when the food is crammed together like it’s usually the case with bento boxes popular in Japan though.Emilie, Japan
Also don’t forget that kids eat with their eyes first! Fun and colorful accessories can make lunch more appealing. So, make sure you get the right size boxes and bottles, the right quantity, and explore all the cutters and molds that will help you pack fun lunches in a minute!
Just stacking foods on a skewer or using a shape cutter can keep the same foods interesting.Lindsay, Canada
#4 Be Resilient.
Once you’ve decided on a list of simple and real foods you’re ready to rotate, stick to it. Kids can’t eat what is not available, so keep up the good work. Vary the combinations, vary the shapes, the way to prepare, but stick to your healthy options. If your youngest eaters may find it upsetting at the beginning, no doubt your efforts will pay off. Be confident about it.
In the beginning my oldest boy was upset to find in his lunchbox a lot of tomatoes, quinoa, cucumbers,… Luckily the teachers and assistants encouraged me to keep packing that way. Lately the mom of my son’s best friend told me his boy wanted now to try baby carrots “to do like his friend!Clementine, Panama
#5 Allow you some breaks from lunch packing.
Nothing better than a break to jazz up your daily routine and reboot your inspiration. Purchase lunch at school, get some ready-to-eat food at the grocery store nearby, or simply involve your hubby from time to time! Kids like to be surprised. At worst they will enjoy even better your next lunchbox;). Another smart way is to involve your kids into packing their lunch once a week. This requires more time in the beginning, but it’s very efficient in the long run!