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30 back-to-school lunch box ideas

30 back-to-school lunch box ideas for your kids that are quick, easy and yummy!

30 lunch ideas for back to school

Today I thought it would be fun to share some easy lunch box and snack ideas. Let’s be honest, sometimes it’s hard to come up with new lunch ideas. If my son could eat PB&J every day for the rest of his life, he would be a happy camper. We will be most likely making sandwiches 2-3 times a week, but I thought I better try and mix things up on the other days. We usually eat a lot of hot meals at home, so I thought we’d try a cold version of some of them too. I’ve found it definitely helps when I let my son help pick what he wants for lunch.

30 back-to-school lunch box ideas

Here’s what my son wanted for his first day –bagel sandwich, carrots, apples and cheese. I even let him add some popcorn we picked up at the farmers market for his first day. I cut out the cheese with a cookie cutter and honestly it took me two seconds. Nothing fancy.

Then I printed one of these free printable lunch box notes to go in my son’s lunch too. Yes, I’m totally that mom. The one who walks their kid all the way in and takes pics all along the way. It probably won’t happen after the first day of school. I’m not making any promises. 😉

back to school lunch ideas

30 back-to-school lunch box ideas

  1. The classic PB&J (my son’s favorite)
  2. Bagel and cream cheese
  3. Turkey and cheese roll up
  4. Boiled eggs
  5. Homemade pizza wheels
  6. Pasta salad
  7. Pita sandwich
  8. Waffle
  9. Tuna sandwich
  10. Grilled chicken
  11. BLT wrap
  12. Thermos taco soup
  13. Chicken salad on a croissant
  14. Leftovers for lunch
  15. Cheese and meat kabobs
  16. Chicken soft taco
  17. Penna pasta
  18. Chicken nuggets
  19. Ham and cheese sub
  20. Homemade lunchable
  21. Mozzarella and tomato
  22. Mini corn dogs
  23. Sandwich kabobs
  24. Green salad
  25. Pesto chicken rolls
  26. Peanut butter and banana sandwich
  27. Tortilla chips and dip
  28. Vegetable soup in thermos
  29. Egg salad sandwich
  30. Pancake sandwich

Another great way to mix up lunches is to add a variety with snacks. I always try to add at least one fruit and vegetable. Here are some of our favorites:

  • grapes, apples slices, strawberries, cantaloupe, watermelon, bananas, apple sauce
  • carrot sticks, celery, cucumbers, grape tomatoes, snap peas
  • pretzels, wheat thins, string cheese, granola bar, trail mix, gold fish, fruit leather, yogurt

Packing tips

  • Use a tupperware or bento box with dividers. If your kids don’t love when their food touches, this is a great solution.
  • Silicone baking cups. If you don’t have a lunch box with dividers, you can use these silicone baking cups to divide the space. Maybe it’s just me, but I love anything that adds color.
  • Cookie cutters. I love to use fun-shaped mini cookie cutters to cut out things like cheese, fruit, etc. It’s a cute little touch that will make your kids extra eager to eat what’s there.
  • Stay organized. I’m also thinking it would be fun to make a magnetic lunch chart like this one below to keep us organized. I know my son would love this!

lunch chart

So there you have it…30 back-to-school lunch box ideas. What works best for you?

More back-to-school inspiration:

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