Laura Fuentes is the Chief MOM at MOMables™; a school lunch menu planning service that helps parents make fresh lunches in 10 minutes or less. A wife, mother of 3 and a lunch enthusiast who insists on healthy, wholesome food for her family. On her personal blog, Super Glue Mom, she writes about motherhood, green living, deadlines and keeping her cool, even when her kids super-glued her hair. She’s also a food contributor to numerous sites, and helps parents overcome the difficulties of cooking for picky eaters.
For the past couple of years, school lunch programs nationwide have been put in the spotlight and received much scrutiny by the media to move toward healthier options for children. While it’s
great that attention has been called to the issue, parents are still left with the dilemma of packing a healthy school lunch at home and what to put inside the lunchbox.
A quick Google search for “healthy school lunches” will generate over 2.1million search results in 0.27 seconds. Wow, talk about information overload! There are hundreds of websites and blogs dedicated to school lunches; mostly by moms who take the time to photograph, write and post about it. What is a busy, full-time, working parent to do when trying to select healthier options for their kids?
The packaged food industry has seen this growing trend for sure. Visit a school cafeteria and you’ll see that much of the food that comes out of a kid’s lunch bag is also processed and packaged; it just claims to be healthy and nutritious. Parents are sold on the idea that home-packed-lunches are better than school cafeteria food; and thanks to the food-marketing experts, home-packed does not mean homemade. Kids are not immune to the marketing efforts; my daughter used to ask for food by brand and type of packaging.
Two years ago, I made it my mission to create healthy food that looked like what my kids’ friends were eating; yet wholesome, unprocessed, convenient and quick to prepare. Two years later, I’m still on that mission, but on a larger scale. I built a company dedicated to helping parents make fresh school lunches in less than ten minutes: MOMables™. It’s a running joke among my friends that I’ve become the modern lunch mom, stilettos and all. I’m thrilled to share one of our most popular lunches in our menus; not because it’s the most original, but because it clearly demonstrates how a typical processed lunch can be made healthy, organic even, and cheaper!
- 4-6 Slices of real cheddar cheese
- 2 Slices of Ham or Turkey, cut into circles
- 6 Circle crackers
- 1-2 Servings of fruit and/or veggies
- Treat of choice
- Slice cheese.
- Lay ham or turkey slices on cutting board and with a circle cutter cut out all the meat –or use a shot glass if you don’t have a circle cutter.
- Slice fruit. Package all items in one or various containers (make sure you separate crackers so they don’t get soggy from moisture).
Honestly, this is my daughter’s favorite lunch and in the top-ten of our test groups. One of the things we understand about kids is that they want to fit in… even in the cafeteria. This lunch takes about five minutes to put together and is much healthier than what you can buy at the store. The variations of cheese and high quality deli meats are endless… giving you options and variety in the lunch box. If you think it’s cheaper to buy it pre-made, check this chart below and see for yourself that making this lunch organic can be a dollar cheaper! That’s over $180 dollars you can save per child in a school year assuming you made this every day; although all of our MOMables™ lunches cost less than the store bought option and are much healthier.
While kids want to eat food that is fun parents want to give them the nutrition they need to grow. There are many options to make lunch more fun without spending a lot of time cutting sandwiches into cute shapes and twisting fruits and vegetables into works of art. Believe me, I don’t have time for that and –most likely- neither do you. If you’d like a free lunch making tips, list of healthy snack ideas, and a sample MOMables™ menu, subscribe to our Fresh News™ on our website. Feeding your kids healthy school lunches should not be complicated. Don’t you think?
What’s the most challenging thing you come across when making lunch for your kids?