Sandwiches are a staple in lunch boxes of both kids and adults. They are fast to prep, easy to carry and satisfying for long work or play days. Over the summer, you may have got in a rut of packing the same things day in and day out. With the school year in our midst, re-vamping the sandwich options could give the lunch box a new lease on life.
Rather than buying lunch or deli meat that tends to be highly processed and contain extras that aren’t so healthy, rely on leftovers. When you are cooking dinner, add an extra chicken thigh or breast to slice for the next day. Or cook more fish than you know the family will eat and mash it for the next day. Sometimes just switching up the usual whole grain sliced bread for a kaiser roll or wrap to make it a more interesting lunch, and something to look forward to. The possibilities are endless when you gain some inspiration.
Here are some more ideas to get you in the sandwich mood:
- Leftover or sliced chicken with lettuce, cucumber and tomato
- Leftover or sliced ham or chicken, avocado and tomato with basil pesto mayo
- Tuna or salmon salad mayonnaise and chopped cucumber or dill pickle
- Grated cheese and grapes
- Falafel, hummus and salad
- Grilled cheese and basil pesto
- Grated carrot with cucumber, sprouts and hummus
- Brie with cranberry sauce
- Cheddar with sliced apples and pea sprouts
- Turkey slices with spinach, apple butter and wholegrain mustard mixed
- Mashed hard boiled egg, mayonnaise and watercress or chives
- Mashed sardines or mackerel in tomato sauce
- Pressed cottage or cream cheese with sweet corn, cucumber or fruit spread
- Mashed banana and tahini (sesame seed spread)
Package the sandwiches up in a re-usable container for a litter-less lunch with some veggie sticks on the side. Sweet treats don’t need to be a regular in any lunch box. They often get eaten first filling small tummies before they make it to the healthy food. So skip putting the temptation in there and keep the meal simple, sans any sugar.
To keep it all straight, I suggest you use a calendar style meal plan to jot down what’s on the dinner menu that can be turned into lunch the next day. You may need to get the seal of approval from the family, so writing it down and sharing it with the family helps. Involve the kids in planning, give them a say and allow for suggestions, and you’ll end up with a tastier lunch and an empty lunch box at the end of the day.