Weekly Lunches

Packed Lunches Made Easy

by Jacqueline Stone

Schools and their cafeterias are making more of an effort to serve up an array of different foods. They now offer a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, grab and go items, and pre-packaged foods that are low in sodium, saturated and trans-fat. But, are your kids choosing these foods? Probably not. I remember dreading lunch time at school and not liking the food at all. I would have loved some home cooked love in the middle of the day and was so excited when I finally got to high school and was able to bring my own food.

Packing your own lunch is not only healthier but also comes out to be more economic in the long run. I do admit, it’s quite time consuming and it’s difficult to come up with different lunch options every day! In that case, even agreeing to packing lunch 1-3 times a week can provide the benefits of a home cooked meal. Allow your kids to be part of the decision making process. Ask them what foods they want to eat and see if they have any interest in helping you out with the preparations.  Give them the opportunity to be hands on. By being part of the lunch making process, it might make them more excited to bringing and finishing their food. They can even take the weekend to make it a do-it-yourself lunch box or decorate and paint an ordinary brown paper bag. Also, when your kids come home from school, have a conversation with them about what they ate. Make it a point to talk to your kids about the meals and foods they enjoy eating.

Week of October 7th

MONDAY:

FAMOUS CAPRESE SANDWICH:

  • WHOLE GRAIN ROLL
  • 2-3 OZ. MOZZARELLA CHEESE
  • SLICED TOMATO

1 SERVING SPECIAL K CRACKER CHIPS

FRESH ORANGE

BOTTLE OF WATER

TUESDAY:

 SMALL WHEAT BAGEL (OR SANDWICH THIN)

2 TSP LOW FAT CREAM CHEESE (TEMP-TEE!)

2 OZ. SLICED NOVA

SLICED CUCUMBERS (USE A MOLD FOR FUN SHAPES!)

100 CALORIE PACK

FRESH PEACH OR NECTARINE

BOTTLE OF WATER

WEDNESDAY:

PITA POCKET: FILLED WITH 2 SLICES OF TURKEY BREAST AND 1 SLICE LOW FAT CHEESE

CHOPPED CUCUMBERS AND TOMATOES (IN SANDWICH IF DESIRED)

4-8 OUNCES FLAVORED GREEK YOGURT

15 RED GRAPES

BOTTLE OF WATER

 

THURSDAY:

Soft Taco Day!

In compartmentalized lunch box:
3 slices cold cuts or 3 oz. tuna (1T LF mayo)
2 whole wheat tortillas/soft taco
1/4 cup shredded low fat cheese

3-4 tablespoons shredded lettuce (avoid iceberg)
1/4 cup guacamole (fresh store-bought)
1/4 cup salsa (fresh store-bought)
1-2 tablespoons low fat sour cream or plain low fat yogurt

Sugar-free fat-free pudding

Fresh pear

Bottle of water

FRIDAY:

Pesky Shrimp Skewers:

2-3 skewers

4-6 cooked shrimp

2-4 grape tomatoes

2-4 cucumber chunks

1-2 colored pepper chunks (optional)

Cocktail sauce for dipping

 KIND Snack Bar

1 cup mixed fruit chunks

Bottle of water

 

 

Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN is a licensed nutritionist and author.  Ronni Litz Julien Nutrition provides nutritional consultations for life-long programs, weight management, cholesterol and lipid health, diabetes, eating disorders. Children, adults and families in the privacy of your own home.

 

 

 

Lunch Menu

Monday

Peanut Butter and Banana Roll-up*

Sliced cucumbers and low fat Ranch dressing

½ cup Chex Mix (Low fat version, of course!)

Fresh peach or nectarine

Bottle of water

 

*Peanut Butter and Banana Roll-Up:

Spread 2 tablespoons of peanut butter on a whole-wheat wrap, drizzle with 1 teaspoon honey. Place slices of small banana in the wrap, then roll up!

Tuesday

Waldorf Chicken Salad Sandwich in a Pita**

Baby carrots

100 calorie popcorn/sprinkle with parmesan cheese

2 small tangerines

Bottle of water

 

**Mix ¼-1/3 cup shredded rotisserie chicken (skinless), 1-2 tablespoons each of chopped apples and celery, chopped walnuts, raisins, and 1 tablespoon low fat mayonnaise.  Place into a medium-sized whole wheat pita bread.

Wednesday

½ cup tuna salad (made with low fat mayonnaise)

1 serving whole grain crackers

Chopped tomatoes and black olives

Kashi Layered Granola Bar

10-15 grapes

Bottle of water

Thursday BBQ

1 Hebrew National 97% Fat Free Hot Dog (heat and wrap in foil)

Whole wheat hot dog bun (Nature’s Own—and pack it separately)

Pickles

1 serving or small bag Baked Lays

Fresh apple

Bottle of water

Friday “Lunchable”

1-2 ounces cubed low fat cheeses

1-2 ounces turkey breast roll-ups

1 serving whole grain crackers

Grape tomatoes

Small baggie of trail mix: 1 tablespoon of each: nuts, raisins and chocolate chips!

Melon chunks

Bottle of water

Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN is a licensed nutritionist and author.  Ronni Litz Julien Nutrition provides nutritional consultations for life-long programs, weight management, cholesterol and lipid health, diabetes, eating disorders. Children, adults and families in the privacy of your own home.

 

LUNCHES FOR THE WEEK

by Ronni Julien

Monday

The Deconstructed Lunch Box:

Compartmentalized Tupperware filled with:

2-3 ounces of cubed low fat cheeses

1 serving whole grain crackers (Wheat Thin Fiber Selects)

1 cup watermelon chunks

½ cup snap peas

1-2 cups low fat microwaveable popcorn

Bottle of water

 

Tuesday

Nova and low fat cream cheese on a wheat Bagel Thin

Or a Whole Wheat Flatbread

Small baggie filled with green or black olives

1 cup fresh pineapple chunks

Kashi Granola Bar

Bottle of water

 

Wednesday

Pizza Muffin (see recipe)*

Small romaine salad with low fat dressing

Small peach or nectarine

1-2 oz. cashews and raisins mix

Bottle of water

 

*Pizza Muffin:

Low fat Pillsbury Crescent Rolls

3-4 oz. jarred tomato sauce

3-4 oz. low fat mozzarella cheese

 

Lay each piece of dough in a muffin cup.  Top with tomato sauce and low fat mozzarella cheese (and optional spices or veggies your kids like).  Bake as directed per Crescent Roll directions.  Makes 4 pizza muffins!

Thursday

Apple Cartwheels:

Cored and sliced apple

2 Tablespoons Skippy Natural Peanut Butter

(Make a hole horizontally through the apple, slice and fill with peanut butter)

 

1-2 low fat string cheeses

KIND Bar

Bottle of water

 

Friday

Chicken breast slices in a whole grain wrap

Chopped lettuce and tomato

1 Tablespoon BBQ sauce

15 red or green grapes

Baked Tostitos and salsa

Bottle of water

 

Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN is a licensed nutritionist and author.  Ronni Litz Julien Nutrition provides nutritional consultations for life-long programs, weight management, cholesterol and lipid health, diabetes, eating disorders. Children, adults and families in the privacy of your own home.

LUNCH MENU FOR THE WEEK

MONDAY:

Lean Roast beef sandwich on Whole Wheat Roll

Mustard or ketchup

1 serving Baked Tostitos with Salsa

Grape tomatoes

½ cup berries

Bottle of water

 

TUESDAY:

Thermos of Pasta Fagioli soup (click here for recipe)

1 serving whole grain crackers

100 calorie pack

Baby carrots

Fresh watermelon

Bottle of water

 

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY:

½ cup hummus

Small whole wheat pita

Ziploc baggie of whole grain cereal (Kashi or Special K with Berries or Cheerios)

Sliced cucumbers

Favorite fruit!

Bottle of water

 

THURSDAY:

½ cup tuna (low fat mayonnaise)

Whole grain wrap with lettuce/tomato

Single serving bag of baked chips

Clementines

Bottle of water

 

 

 

FRIDAY:

Almond butter sandwich

Whole grain bread

Add sliced almonds and dried cranberries to sandwich!!

100-calorie microwave low fat popcorn

Cut-up raw veggies

Small banana

Bottle of water

 

 

Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN is a licensed nutritionist and author.  Ronni Litz Julien Nutrition provides nutritional consultations for life-long programs, weight management, cholesterol and lipid health, diabetes, eating disorders. Children, adults and families in the privacy of your own home.

 

 

 

 

 

LUNCHES WEEK OF May 6, 2013

MONDAY:

Home-made pizza on flat-bread*:

Flat bread

Tomato sauce

Shredded low fat cheese

Favorite veggies

Sliced orange

Small bag of trail mix

Bottle of water

 

*Use 2 flatbreads and cover top with one flatbread….so it is not open-faced!

 

TUESDAY:

Egg Salad wrap (use low fat mayo to make egg salad)

Grape tomatoes

Kashi granola bar

Sliced pear or fresh pineapple chunks

Bottle of water

 

WEDNESDAY:

Chicken and cranberry pita:

Grilled chicken chunks with dried cranraisins and shredded romaine lettuce—light dressing on a medium whole wheat pita

100 calorie bag of baked Lays

Fresh fruit salad

Bottle of water

 

THURSDAY:

Honey Maple Turkey hero on small whole wheat baguette

Celery sticks and peanut butter

KIND Granola

Cup of fresh berries

Bottle of water

 

 

FUN FRIDAY:

Whole wheat bagel and nova

Light cream cheese

Small bag of green or black olives

Low fat chocolate pudding

Whole grain goldfish or 100 calorie pack

Bottle of water

 

 

 

 

Lunch Menu of the Week

TUESDAY

Turkey Chili ** (see recipe)

Celery chunks

Baked Tostito chips

Fresh pear

Bottle of water

 

WEDNESDAY

Sandwich of:

2 slices whole grain bread

2 T Natural Peanut Butter

Small sliced banana

Baby carrots

Fiber One 90 cal bar

20 red or green grapes

Bottle of water

 

THURSDAY

Wrap:

1-3 slices turkey breast

1 slice low fat provolone or low fat American cheese

Mustard or low fat mayonnaise

Sliced cucumbers

100 calorie pack Teddy Grahams

Sliced apple

Bottle of water

 

FRIDAY

2 sliced hard boiled eggs

Serving multi-grain crackers

Small chopped Caesar salad (romaine lettuce, parm cheese, low fat Caesar dressing—Ken’s Lite)

Low fat fruited yogurt

Plenty of berries

Bottle of water

 

MONDAY

2 small slices Boboli home-made pizza:

Whole wheat crust

Tomato sauce

Low fat shredded mozzarella cheese

Sneak in some veggies!

Baby carrots

Baked Cheetos

Fresh pineapple chunks

Bottle of water

 

Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN is a licensed nutritionist and author.  Ronni Litz Julien Nutrition provides nutritional consultations for life-long programs, weight management, cholesterol and lipid health, diabetes, eating disorders. Children, adults and families in the privacy of your own home.

 

 

 

 

Lunch Menu for the Week

MONDAY

 Turkey breast wrap (whole wheat wrap)–3-4 slices of turkey

Sneak in lettuce and tomato

Low fat mayo or mustard

100 cal low fat microwave popcorn

Baby carrots (and dip, too!)

20 grapes or cherries

Bottle of water

 

TUESDAY

3 oz. (3 slices) low fat cheese–cut in triangles or cubes

1 serving Whole grain crackers

15 cashews or 100 calorie pack

Black or green olives and/or sliced cucumbers

Sliced apple and bottle of water

 

WEDNESDAY

Scoop of tuna (use low fat mayo)–3-4 oz.

Small whole wheat pita

KIND Bar

Chopped tomato and cucumbers

Small banana and bottle of water

 

THURSDAY

 

Good old PBJ:

2 slices Natures Own bread (or Lite White)

2T Trans fat free PB I.e. Skippy Natural

All-fruit jam

Fiber One Brownie 90 cal

Celery or grape tomatoes

Small peach and Bottle of water

FRIDAY

1/2 – 1 cup black beans

1/2 – 1 cup brown rice (make with bouillon cube for more flavor)

Baked plantains** (see recipe on the website)

Cut-up raw veggies

Favorite fruit

Bottle of water

 

Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN is a licensed nutritionist and author with Ronni Litz Julien Nutrition providing nutritional consultations for life-long programs, weight management, cholesterol and lipid health, diabetes, eating disorders. Children, adults and families in the privacy of your own home.

The Weekly Lunch Box

 

Every week we will be featuring a new idea for making your child’s lunch box appealing, different and nutritious.  Step beyond the standard PB & J sandwich into some interesting and easy-to-make combinations.

 

 

 

The non-sandwich lunch includes:

Two low fat string cheeses

 1 serving whole grain crackers

Baby carrots and low fat dip

2 cups microwave low fat popcorn

10 grapes or cherries

bottle of water

 

Nutritionist and health expert, registered dietitian and author, Ronni Litz Julien, MS, RD/LDN has dedicated her professional life to teaching healthy eating habits to all ages. Julien develops lifelong behavioral changes for clients, creating nutrition lifestyles that are realistic, and simple to manage. She specializes in family/children’s healthy eating, disease prevention, weight management, heart disease, gastrointestinal disorders, diabetes, eating disorders, cancer, and other nutrition-related issues.

 

 Julien has authored three important books that address the lack of healthy eating habits in the United States today, “What Should I Feed My Kids? How to Keep Your Children Healthy by Teaching Them to Eat Right”, “The Trans Fat Free Kitchen”, and The Everything Series’ “Everything Cooking for Kids”.  With obesity, both in children and adults, being one of the most chronic health issues today, Julien’s message is more important than ever.