During my morning scramble I’m rushing to cook breakfast and pack a healthy lunch for my kids. In that hectic time slot my multitasking-parent skills are on overdrive. Once the kids are eating breakfast, I start working on lunch. I don’t necessarily pack the plain old PB & J. Instead I mix and match whatever I have on hand to send my kids off with a balanced array of foods. I think of lunch items as fitting into one of three categories: protein, fruit and vegetables, and whole grains.
I used to be able to convince myself that the money I spent eating out was reasonable, but then my wife and I started tracking our expenses. The results were eye-opening: I spend this much in restaurants? Clearly, a change needed to happen. It came in the form of a $2 piece of plastic—the Tupperware container I use to start bringing my own lunch. And though the savings is only a little bit each day, I started noticing the extra money in my pocket pretty quickly.
Pictured Recipe: Pizza Roll-Up Bento Lunch
Learn how to pack a healthy and eco-friendly bento box lunch.
Take-along lunches are back in style. Packing your lunch saves money, encourages you to eat a healthy meal and can reduce waste.
With a full-time job and two young boys (Julian, 2, and Kai, 4 months), I’ve basically abandoned nearly all domestic chores except one: preparing nutritious meals, especially our kids’ lunches. (I am a nutritionist, after all.)
When it comes to lunch, not much has changed since I was a kid—even at age 34, I’m still envious when a co-worker pulls out a treat that I wish I had in my lunch bag! Whether you’re packing a lunch for the kids or brown-bagging it at work, it’s always nice to include a little treat.