Lunchbox Ideas For The Adventurous Child
We all want the best for our kids and naturally that includes their health. But with kids especially, the road to good health and simple holistic foods can be quite bumpy. There are simply too many commercial temptations coupled with peer pressure. What child wants to be the uncool kid with the kale chips in their lunchbox?
So even though kale chips may be far off for you and your child, there are many ways to elevate or upgrade your child’s existing lunch box staples:
IF YOU’RE READY FOR SOMETHING DIFFERENT:
- Chia seed pudding with fruits: http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-15072/10-fun-ways-to-eat-chia-seeds.html
- Vegetable/nori sheet wraps: the easiest way to make these is to mash up an avocado (hummus works well too) and add whatever toppings your child prefers (shredded carrots, cucumbers, chicken, meat) and roll them up in lettuce, any large leafy green or nori sheets. You can find Nori sheets here
- Cucumber sandwiches: (just don’t use the processed meat shown in this recipe) http://makethebestofeverything.com/2012/07/cucumber-subs.html
- Cauliflower Wraps: Again, fill these with your child’s favorite filling. http://empoweredsustenance.com/cauliflower-wraps/
- Pesto dip with raw veggies: This recipe is a staple in all of my clean eating programs: 1 cup fresh basil leaves, loosely packed; ½ cup fresh parsley, cilantro or mint; 2 sundried tomatoes; 2 cloves fresh garlic, peeled; 1 lemon juiced; ¼-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, as needed; 1 tsp sea salt. Combine the basil, fresh herbs (parsley, cilantro OR mint) sundried tomatoes and garlic in a food processor until it is finely chopped. Slowly add extra virgin olive oil in a steady drizzle as you pulse the processor on and off. Process until it becomes a smooth light paste. Add enough olive oil to keep it moist and spreadable. Season with sea salt. Cover tightly and chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour to saturate the flavors. If storing overnight, pour a thin layer of extra virgin olive oil over the top of the pesto to help keep it bright green.
- Baked Apple crisps: From my Summer Refresher Cleanse: 4 apples; 1 lemon juiced; 2 cups cold water; sprinkle of cinnamon; sprinkle of ground ginger. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees F/ 95 C while preparing the apples. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Add lemon juice to a bowl of cold water and set to the side. Wash and slice your apples as thin as you can, core and all. Add apple slices to the cold water and lemon juice mixture for a few seconds as this will prevent browning. Remove apple slices from the water, and place in a single layer on the baking sheet. Sprinkle the chips with cinnamon and ginger powder. Bake the apple slices for one hour, then flip to the other side and bake for another hour. If the slices are not dry enough, you can bake for another 10-15 minutes. Once the apples slices are done to your liking, remove from heat and set to the side to cool. Once cool, place them in an airtight container for storage.
I would love to know what worked and what didn’t with your children–leave me a comment or ask a question below 🙂
Dana Dinnawi is an Integrative Nutrition health coach specializing in empowering women to improve their health and family life. She received her training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where she studied more than one hundred dietary theories and a variety of practical lifestyle coaching methods. She can be reached through her website and Facebook page.