School lunches are a big part of my weekday mornings. Two of my three kiddos are at school, with next year seeing all three there, I’m an old hand at the school lunch box. I’m definitely not one of those uber-organised, make-the-lunches-the-night-before kinda girl. I’m a more of a chuck-it-in-the-lunch-box-whilst-loudly-reminding-my-girls-to-get-their-school-uniform-on kinda girl. If I had $1 for every time I ‘reminded’ the girls to put that #$%&ing uniform on I would be able to employ someone else to do the morning routine. Whilst the evening before isn’t my bag, a bit of Sunday baking and organisation is. I need to have tasty, nourishing snacks and meal options on hand to pop in the girl’s lunch boxes or all they get is just cut up fruit and veg, which no kid wants to open a lunch box and find just that. This weekend will see me cooking up a storm, accompanied by the whirlwind of mess, in my kitchen. I’m not a clean cook, but that is a story for another day.
Today, I offer some lunch box loving I have found in my travels in internet land that may end up filling your little ones, or even your own, lunch box in the coming week. I feel a weekly wrap up of all the good lunch box options out there may just have to become a regular feature.
Spelt muffins from Colour Me Anna. These look like a really yummy basic muffin recipe.
Easy mini lasagne from Planning With Kids. My bread hater loves these for lunch, either cold (kids hey!) or warmed up in and popped in her thermos. Just make sure you remember a knife and fork.
Nut free muesli bars from Lisa Corduff. These are an absolute winner and feature in my girl’s lunchbox often. Even my fussy middle one likes these!
Choc-nana and sesame biscuits from Hello Lunch Lady. How good do these look? I think it is physically impossible for Kate Berry to make anything look bad in her photos.
This Sunday’s bake off will see me busting out my banana bread as I have a glut of bananas turning a lovely shade of black in my fruit bowl. Does the food world need another recipe for the ubiquitous banana bread? Probably not, but I offer up this version anyway. It tastes delish and is pretty nourishing to boot. It is gluten-free, dairy-free and processed sugar free just because that is what I felt like making when I developed this one. It can even become a vegan super star if the eggs are replaced with a chia gel. See here for lowdown on chia gels and other egg replacements.
Yet Another Banana Bread Recipe
1 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup buckwheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
2 large bananas, mashed
2/3 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
decorations – I banana cut into rounds, pumpkin seeds, coconut flakes
Preheat your oven to 180C or 170C fan forced.
Pop all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix together with a spoon (can it be any easier!). Pour the mixture into a loaf tin lined with baking paper. To decorate simply sprinkle the banana rounds, pumpkin seeds and coconut flakes on top. Place into your preheated oven and bake for 40-50 minutes. If the delicious cinnamony-banana smell wafts through your kitchen any earlier, check to see if it’s cooked. Let cool in the loaf tin for 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire tray to cool completely. I can never wait this long and always slice off the the end piece and slather it in butter whilst still warm, but that’s how I roll.
As a parent of school kids and a nutritionist, I fully understand the importance of healthy school food. Stay tuned for lots more info and inspo about healthy, nutritious and yummy food that you can pop into your kids lunch boxes.
Here’s to moving forward