Whether your children are at junior or senior school, nutritious but delicious lunches are important for keeping kids energised until the bell rings for home time.
While finding inspiration for healthy lunchbox fillers can be a bit of a headache, we’ve teamed up with Malvern St James Girls’ School, which is renowned for promoting the importance of food and nutrition, to share eight ideas that you can whip up in a flash.
From super salads and wholesome wraps, to burrito bowls and energy-boosting bites, find plenty of tasty ideas that your kids will enjoy discovering when they open their lunchboxes at midday!
For more information about Malvern St James Girls’ School, visit malvernstjames.co.uk directly.
For an alternative to sandwiches, mix it up by swapping bread for wholemeal or multi-seed wraps for a more exciting lunchtime staple, that can be tailored to your child’s favourite flavour combos.
The choices are endless when it comes to deciding what to fill your wrap with, but lean protein such as leftover cooked chicken, cream cheese, pesto, veggies, and hummus are all staple ingredients.
Salads definitely don’t have to be boring and are a great way to up your child’s vitamin intake without compromising on flavour. For more filling salads, start by choosing a carbohydrate such as rice, pasta, noodles, couscous, quinoa, bulgar wheat, or roasted sweet potato chunks.
If your child has an adventurous palate, create a Greek-style salad with feta, olives, tomato and cucumber, while tuna mayo with sweetcorn is a classic that most kids will gobble up. And for an extra protein hit, add some tinned beans or some toasted seeds.
Whether you want to add to sandwiches, spoon onto the top of salads, or serve with a rainbow of vegetable sticks, dips are versatile lunchbox fillers that are both tasty and nutritious.
While it’s tempting to buy pre-made versions, it’s pretty simple to whip up a batch of homemade hummus or guacamole at the start of the week. What’s more for sweet versions, peanut butter is a great combination with apple slices, while a honey-yoghurt dip is delicious with fruit sticks.
Healthy homemade muffins are ideal for kids to enjoy at morning or afternoon breaktime, or as a sweet addition to lunchboxes, and can be batch baked in advance and simply popped into the freezer to make life easy for parents.
If you have a fussy eater, muffins are great for sneaking in dried fruits such as dates, or veggies like courgettes which work well in sweet recipes; while oats, nuts and seeds add even more protein for an extra filling snack.
Packed with flavour and full of protein, frittatas are a simple and tasty way to inject a bit of goodness to your child’s lunch. Choose to make a large frittata and slice into portions or for a more child-friendly option, whip up a batch of mini creations in a muffin tin.
Possible flavour combinations include red pepper, peas, broccoli and cheddar; spinach, feta and cherry tomatoes; or keep it simple with bacon and some veggies for a lighter take on quiche Lorraine.
Younger kids will love opening their lunchboxes to find fun fruit snacks, which definitely make getting your five-a-day in more appealing to fussy eaters, who will be more inclined to eat colourful fruit salads, especially when presented in an easy-to-munch fashion.
Search Pinterest and Instagram and you’ll find all manner of creative ways to present fruit, from silly face or animal shapes, to strawberry and grape kebab sticks, while tangerine slices dipped in dark chocolate are perfect for a post-lunch sweet hit.
If your son or daughter is a fan of Mexican food then you can easily tailor one of the cuisine’s most popular dishes to be lunchbox-friendly by converting leftover burrito ingredients into a healthy salad bowls.
Load up your Tupperware with pre-cooked chicken, veggies, rice and some black beans, before adding sliced avocado, corn, shredded lettuce, grated cheese and tomato salsa. Or for another Mexican lunch idea, make cheese and veggie quesadillas which can be enjoyed the followed day with a simple green salad.
Wave goodbye to afternoon slumps by making up a batch of no-bake child-friendly energy balls, which are brimming with protein and healthy fats, and taste just as delicious as a biscuit or cake.
Not only are they quick to whizz up in a food processor, but you can use all manner of ingredients, such as dates, nuts, oats, desiccated coconut, and nut butter, while cocoa power, orange zest and juice will transform them into moreish chocolate orange bites.
Tuesday 12 September 2017
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