How to Prepare and Pack a Fun and Healthy Lunch


Remember the endless stream of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from school lunches gone by? No wonder we traded with our friends.

These days, school lunches are much more fun, nutritious and easy to prepare. Increasingly, both adults and children are carrying lunchboxes with compartments for hot and cold foods, and thermoses of soup and drinkable yogurt for digestion. They get protein from cheese, fish and meat. And thanks to a recent dictum from nutritionists, we’re encouraged to feed our children what they like, ensuring that they’ll actually eat their lunches. As a bonus, it can also be healthier and less expensive to pack a lunch.

For many, leftovers are the answer. If your children loved last night’s dinner – be it burritos, macaroni and cheese, or a curry dish – feel free to recycle it as lunch. Add a serving of fruit and milk or vegetable juice. It’s easy and there will be no leftovers to turn green in the back of the fridge.

It works for adults, too. According to, most of us take less than 19 minutes for lunch and almost half of us eat at our desk. Lunch totes have now replaced the brown bags in our briefcases, and we, too, are taking leftovers to work. After all, who wouldn’t prefer a hot lunch to a plastic-wrapped sandwich? As well as chili and stews, casseroles are better the second day and reheat perfectly. Children – and some taste-challenged adults – love cold pizza.

Healthy lunches mean healthy bodies and healthy minds. They also mean no more trading with friends.