One of the biggest challenges parents face at one point or another is to get your kids eating healthier food. Compound that pressure by making healthy school lunches five days a week and it’s enough to drive any parent round the bend.
Enter the Bento Box. You may have heard other mums rave about them, and with good reason.
These handy little lunch boxes have compartments to pack a variety of different foods to appease the fussiest of eaters.
Before we get started, check out some highly recommended Bento Boxes.
What to pack
Here’s a simple guide to help get you stated on your bento adventures and what to pack in each compartment.
- Protein – deli meat, chickpeas, tofu, eggs, yoghurt
- Grains – rice, bread, wraps, pasta, crackers
- Vegetables – tomato, lettuce, cucumber, carrot, capsicum
- Fruit – apple, orange, grapes, berries, watermelon
- Snacks – cheese, muesli bar, muffin, popcorn
Sunday cook up
Meal preparation saves so much time but more importantly keeps you motivated to eat healthy for the whole week.
- Invest in some good quality, airtight containers. Cut up all your veggies, fruit, bits and pieces and have them ready to go in the fridge.
- Batch cook some fried rice, muffins, quiches and some other baked goods that can be served cold
- Clear space in your fridge so that all your prepared food is at eye level for your kids
Save the planet and your pocket
Marketers will have you believe that you don’t have the time nor the skill required to do things yourself and will charge handsomely for ‘convenience’.
- Dips are so easy to make on your own. They’re healthier, cheaper and have far less packaging
- Do away with things that come in individual packets like crackers or cheeses. Buy big packets and prepare food, as you need it.
- Get creative and try your hand at a new recipe each week or fortnight to make something yourself like, muesli bars or slices.
Get the kids involved
- Write a list of foods they enjoy and foods they won’t eat as well as things they would like to try for the week. Come to a compromise that makes everyone happy. The kids will appreciate having some input.
- Once the prep is all done, get the kids to pack their own lunch boxes straight after dinner for the next day. This saves time in the morning and makes them more likely to eat what they have packed themselves.
- Encourage them to have ideas or give feedback.
- Go through cookbooks and recipes together and let them help with any baking or cooking required for the preparation.
For more inspiration, Pinterest is your friend. If you have some fussy eaters with a serious aversion to anything healthy, check out some clever recipes to hide those veggies. And for more Bento news, products and inspo, check out the guys at Little Bento World.