With kids returning to school soon, are you wondering if the lunch and snacks in your kids lunch box are the best and healthiest option? Anyone, including schools, might turn to the pre-packaged option when time is tight, and those are frequently full of hidden sugars and unhealthy fats.
The secret to packing a healthy, nutritious and simple lunch box is to make sure you are using real, fresh food and allowing a little extra time in the kitchen to prepare.
Below are some simple and healthy lunch box ideas from Eat Like A Pro by Beko and FC Barcelona’s nutritionist that will help you prepare delicious and nutritious breakfasts and snacks that will have the entire class envious.
Beko is a Main partner of one of the world’s greatest football clubs, FC Barcelona, so we know what the best athletes in the world eat to help inspire healthy eating habits in kids. Beko’s Eat Like A Pro recipes are created and approved by FC Barcelona nutritionists and are simple to make, helping parents take the challenge out of packing a healthy lunch for the little ones.
Make kids go nuts with fruits and nuts
The most natural, nutritious, and quick alternative for a snack is always a handful of seasonal fruits mixed with a nuts* such as almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts to fuel your child’s day. The fresher the fruits and nuts, the better and try to avoid pre-roasted, salted or seasoned nuts as these have hidden and unhealthy additives.
No matter how many times brands write “all-natural” on their juices, bottled fruit juices are never the same as the fruit itself. Juices are typically rich in added sugars and receive heat treatment that destroys their vitamins. If the time and energy to squeeze the juice out of fruits seem like too much work, remember, you can always serve them whole or sliced up instead.
Sliced is one of the most fun ways to serve fruit because you can make your own creations out of it! Try arranging fruits and nuts to make shapes or faces, or you can even turn the nuts or seeds into a paste, like tahini. Grated coconut is always a fun ingredient and adds that element of yum to any banana or apple.
*Always check with the school on their allergy policies before including nuts in a lunch box.
Don’t forget the good ole’ sandwich
Sandwiches are a classic lunch box addition. Not only are they quick and easy to make but with the right ingredients they can be nutritious and healthy too. The way to a healthy and delicious sandwich starts with the bread. If you’re not making your own, we suggest you buy your bread from the bakery and make sure you’re picking a loaf made from wholegrain flour that has gone through a slow fermentation process.
Now comes the fun part: the filling! Avoid processed products like cold meats, commercial sauces, and jams or hazelnut cream. Instead, use fresh and natural ingredients like:
- Homemade nut pastes or fruit spreads
- Fresh goats or sheep cheese with a spoonful of raw honey
- Rocket or spinach.
With a little bit of imagination, you’ll be able to come up with lots of personalised sandwich designs for your kids and with a little added time and effort, you can prepare some envious lunch boxes.
Whatever recipe you choose, just remember these top tips:
- If you use flour, make it wholegrain
- If you want to sweeten things up, use natural ingredients like fresh or dried fruit (dates, dried apricots, raisins), cinnamon, vanilla, carob, or honey
- Organic, unprocessed foods are always better than pre-packaged or processed options.
By following the above tips and using fresh and healthy ingredients, not only will you have your children eating like pros, but you’ll be prepping lunch boxes like a pro too!