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Lunch menus for kids at home

Last post Sat, May 30 2009 8:30 AM by Brandy. 9 replies.
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  • Thu, May 28 2009 5:11 PM

    Lunch menus for kids at home

    During the school year, my DS eats lunch at school.  His two sisters are in daycare while DH and I work.  Now DH will be home 1/2 days as will our DS.  I've been racking my brain to come up with some ideas.  (Shielajean2 was trying to come up with some ideas, as well).  Here are a few thinks that I came up with that DS has approved.  Some of the ideas are snacks and some are lunches.  Most of the ideas would be rounded out with fruit/veggies and milk.

    French bread pizza with salad.


    Quick bread (pumpkin or banana) and yogurt.

    Grilled chicken, cold with grapes.

    Chili with corn muffins

    mini subs: made out of hot dog buns

    Hot dogs/hamburgers with french fries

    Salad day: Pasta salad, veggie salad, fruit salad, and gelatin salad.

    Pasta salad with muffin.

    Soup and sandwich

    pizza fondue: He found this a bit difficult to eat so we came up with the french bread pizza.  Cubed french bread, olives, pepperoni cubed, and cubed cheese dunk into heated spaghetti sauce.

    Fresh fruit skewers

    He likes cherry tomatoes, olives, salami, cheese and tortellini marinated in italian dressing and skewered for lunch as well.

    I would love to see what others say their families enjoy.




  • Thu, May 28 2009 7:21 PM In reply to

    • daboysj
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Tue, Sep 30 2008
    • Posts 69

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    When my kids were little they loved instant mac and cheese for lunch.  Now, they won't eat anything but homemade.   Cheese and crackers is a easy enough summer lunch.  Last summer, I would make up a big batch of hamburger helper or spaghetti on Sunday and they would eat on it during the week for lunch.

  • Thu, May 28 2009 7:51 PM In reply to

    • gayla50
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Sep 24 2007
    • Western North Carolina
    • Posts 8,491

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    Leftovers , simple sandwhiches .  chef salad  and if rainy I make a big pot of soup.


    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in Frugal Food and Cooking and in Slow Cooker Foods

    Purpose is what gives life a meaning
  • Thu, May 28 2009 10:20 PM In reply to

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    Well, I'm not a kid and I don't have kids. However, some of these lunch ideas sound really good.

  • Thu, May 28 2009 10:36 PM In reply to

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    Does your son like grilled cheese? Yummy, especially with a thin slice of tomato inside.


  • Thu, May 28 2009 11:36 PM In reply to

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    Some times kraft mac and cheese helps if a diet permits it and its cheap to make along with the child having a piece of fruit.

  • Thu, May 28 2009 11:47 PM In reply to

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    Tuna casserole was a favorite for mine, easily made with leftover mac and cheese.  Regular mac and cheese can be made in small batches in the microwave as you would on the stove - just watch for boilovers.  Rice-a-roni.  Ramen noodles with all sorts of additions. 

    Also, dips with anything.  Veggies and salad dressing (homemade Catalina from a can of tomato soup or homemade honey mustard were two of my kids' favorites), fruit and/or graham crackers with p.b. dip (thin the p.b. out with o.j.), saltines and jelly thinned with a little warm water to make it 'dippable', bagels (slice them like bread) in cream cheese thinned with syrup or jelly (buy bagels on the day-old rack, very cheap and filling), microwaved cheese quesadillas cut into strips and dipped in salsa...  Leftover pancakes rolled up with p.b., cream cheese, jelly, applesauce, butter and cinnamon sugar, banana or any combination.

     A bowl of banana slices with mixed fruits and a little chocolate sauce and whipped topping on it takes the place of a banana split and the ice cream won't be missed.  Or doll up canned fruit cocktail by draining it and replacing the liquid with o.j.  Slice in any extra fruit you have on hand.  A good lunch served with some cheese....Liz

  • Fri, May 29 2009 1:41 AM In reply to

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    Hummus with bread (pita is traditional, but any bread will do...I like naan) & veggies for dipping. Hummus is made from garbanzo beans: with grain (preferably whole grain) it makes a complete protein. Add some veggie dippers & it's a complete meal! Hummus can be made from scratch & is very economical, but I've found some tasty prepackaged versions. Wal-mart has the tastiest one that I've found -- funny, huh? Pita & naan are easy pleasy to make at home. I like making a big batch of naan (Indian flatbread) to go with my hummus, then freezing some. 

    Easy thin crust pizza--Naan can also be used for pizzas & can be made/reheated in a toaster oven by a child. Just top w/ whatever you like on your pizza & toast until cheese is bubbly & starting to brown. It makes a thin crust pizza. It's a slight change up from the french bread pizza you're already doing.

    Pita calzones. Take a pita pocket, stuff with cheese, pepperoni, & a bit of sauce, bake in a toaster oven until cheese is melted. Yum! Extra sauce for dipping makes this a winner.

    Gyros (also uses pita). Lunch meat can be expensive! Make your own gyros! It's as economical as making meatloaf. All you do is shave the meat for the right consistency. Add red onions, green lettuce (no iceberg allowed), and tomatoes...(and tzatziki sauce if you're ambitious) for a healthy low cost sammich! Alton Brown has a recipe that's so tasty! It calls for lamb, but you won't be breaking any rules by using beef or turkey. Gyro meat freezes well.

    Fried rice is something that can be made ahead & reheats well. You can easily incorporate a protein (like left over ground meat, steak, chicken, or pork....or (my fave) bacon), and many veggies (carrots, celery, onion, etc). Fried rice is my favorite way to eat brown rice, which is a whole grain & good for you. I'm not the biggest fan of all things healthy...I have to work hard to find a way to fix most 'healthy' food so it is exceptable to my palette.

    Another thing that's easy is a homemade hot pocket.  Again, it reheats in a toaster oven easily.

    For a snack, whole baby radishes sprinkled with sea salt + buttered (traditionally herbed butter) toast is a classic after school fave from the French. I picked up on it a few years back. It's cheap! Especially with Summer produce so abundant. This is a fave of mine for brunches & potlucks, but it's still great for its original purpose.There's very little prep--no need to slice & dice. Just wash the radish bunch & let the kids eat them right off the stem. Adding the sea salt does not make it salty. It cuts the "onion" bite just enough & enhances the flavor beautifully.The salts are necessary to help our bodies break down the veggie nutrients into useful stuff.

    Also, at Sam's the other day, we got Fresh Fruit Freezer Pops! They are 99% real fruit & do not have HFC in them! Yeah! The girls love them. You can always make your own popcicles with fruit that's gotten a little too mushy & simple syrup or ice cream.

    The homemade frosty recipe from hungry girl is great for a summer afternoon. Mix 1 pkg of pudding (she suggests low fat, no sugar) with the amt of milk required on the pkg (usually 1 cup?)--HG says use skim. Let it set for 2 min in fridge, then mix with 1/2 of a pkg of whipped cream (HG says use no fat version). Divide into cups & freeze for 1 hr. It makes a good imitation of a frosty!! Also a very economical snack as pudding & whipped cream can be found on sale. It counts as a portion of dairy for a pyramid balanced day :-) And fat free or full fat...I guess it depends on your dietary needs.

    Plain yogurt with a Tbls of maple syrup (organic) is so yummy!


    I'm sure I'll think of more!


    A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of nature. -Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Fri, May 29 2009 12:42 PM In reply to

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

    All I can say are two things "Thanks" and "Yum!".   This was just what I was looking for.  Easy and nutritious with enough variety he won't get bored.

  • Sat, May 30 2009 8:30 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Lunch menus for kids at home

     We eat leftovers or soups, stew and beans I have cooked ahead. 

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager

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