Wednesday, July 25, 2012

10 Easy Ways to Make Lunch Box Lunches Fun

We've all seen the adorable bento style lunch box ideas around blog land.  They are adorable, but if you're like me, you just don't have the time, energy, or creativity to pull them off everyday...or even once in awhile.  My kids love a cute lunch though, so I try to do something special at least once a week.  

easy lunch box ideas, school lunch ideas

cute napkins 
You can go with beverage size paper ones or colorful fabric ones.  Favorite character napkins are a big hit around here.  Holiday ones are also pretty popular.
    easy lunch box ideas
colored utensils 
I pack spoons and forks so the kids don't have to hunt them down at school.  I might as well go for the colored ones instead of plain white or clear. 

how to make school lunches special

colorful straws  
They usually have milk or water at school, so adding a cute straw makes it fun for them to drink.  I save the crazy/silly straws for home as my kids can get a little crazy/silly with them! 
cupcake picks  
It's easy enough to stick a cupcake pick in sliced fruit, veggies, lunch meats, or even top a sandwich with one.

how to dress up a school lunch

cupcake liners  
You can use the paper or plastic kind to hold pretzels, goldfish, fruits and veggies or whatever without taking anymore time than it would to fill a ziploc baggie. (we have lunch boxes that fit tight so the contents doesn't spill or slide around)

make school lunches fun

A few sprinkles over a cup of yogurt or applesauce can make it exciting for the kids.

easy lunch box ideas

lunchbox notes  
It never takes too much time to tell your kids you love them.  A handwritten note or a printed one is a nice surprise in their lunch.

make things miniature  
My kids think it's so fun when their favorite food is in mini form.  Some foods they like are mini pastas, mini pretzels, mini bagels, oyster crackers and Babybel get the idea.

stickers, stamps, or markers  
A few well placed stickers make a ziploc baggie and its contents a bit more fun.  If you send lunch in a brown bag, use markers to leave a quick note.  

easy lunch box ideas, school lunch ideas

cookie cutters  
If you really want to get crazy, you could always use a simple cookie cutter to stamp out a special pb&j sandwich.

    • Many of these items (napkins, utensils, cupcake picks, etc) I find on clearance or sale at craft stores, party stores, or Target.  When you don't have to have a certain color or theme you can get the deals! 
    • Keeping your supplies in a convenient location also makes life a lot simpler.  I keep most of my things either in a basket in the pantry or in one cabinet near where I make lunches.
    • I don't use all of these things everyday, but one or two here and there can sure make lunch a little more exciting without taking a lot of effort on my part.  
    • Do you have any tips to make lunches fun, but easy?  I'd love to hear about them!

    Now, I'm off to have fun with my kids and pretend school isn't starting in the next few weeks!



    Christy said...

    I like to do things like this too, but Collin informed me that third grade is too old for cute lunches!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Whaaaaat? Well, I can still put notes in his lunch.

    Nicole {WonkyWonderful} said...

    I would've loved to get special treats in my lunch when I was a kid. My daughter isn't quite there yet - but I can't wait to hide lunchbox surprises for her. Thanks for the ideas - Visiting from Super Link Party :)

    Sherri said...

    Yes!!! Yes!!! and Yes!!
    I love your ideas!

    Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

    Great tips! We love using the picks at our house.

    I know, hard to believe school is just around the corner.

    Motivated Mommy of two said...

    these are all great tips Thank you for sharing. This will be my first school year since my daughter will be starting Kinder. Stopping by from Super Link Party.
    Going this weekend to stock up and cute surprises for my daughter

    Ticia said...

    We use some of these for lunches at home.

    Angela said...

    What great tips! Thank you!!! I usually pack the most boring lunches so this is quite inspiring for me. Can't wait to stock up on a few of these fun supplies:)

    Earning-My-Cape said...

    Fun ideas!!!

    Thanks for sharing at my Super Link Party! :-)

    atnumber29 said...

    My little man starts school in september. Thank you!

    Kim @ The Educators Spin On It said...

    Packing lunch for almost 20 years now and trust me I'm always looking for fun ways to encourage my little ones and bigger ones to eat. Just pinned onto our Lunch Board

    Multiples Mom said...

    Those are such cute lunch box ideas. Please link to Artsy Play Wednesday on Capri + 3. The linky is open through tomorrow night and then will re-open on Wednesday.

    : 0 ) Theresa

    Raising a Happy Child said...

    Great ideas! I am not going overboard on cuteness but like sending out notes and special forks/napkins once in a while.

    Sweet Green Tangerine said...

    These are great tips!! I was just brainstorming ideas to make my son's lunches a little different this year and these ideas are so fun! He'll love them.

    Bethany said...

    I really like the cupcake stick idea and the sprinkles. We've used bento boxes, but not with thise. Thanks!

    Garage Sales R Us said...

    What a cute idea! I am visiting from the Made by you Monday. I am a new follower! I blog over at I hope you will stop by and do the same. I also have an awesome giveaway going on right now with a cricut machine. It ends soon! I would love it if you would enter!


    Earning-My-Cape said...

    Congratulations on your favorite feature from my Super Link Party! :-)

    Cheerios and Lattes said...

    Great ideas! Thanks for linking up on Saturday Show and Tell. I hope you'll be back again this week with some more of you great ideas.

    Carrie said...

    What fun ideas!! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!!

    Mackenzie said...

    You are a featured favorite at Saturday Show & Tell on Cheerios and Lattes this week! Thanks again for sharing!
    Mackenzie :)

    Allison said...

    My mom always used to write notes in our lunches. I loved that. So many great ideas here! Thanks for linking up to The Sunday Showcase. :)

    Lisa West said...

    I always feel better if I send them off with a little something special to look forward too. Thanks for the tips. I'm off to check out your soap post! Lisa

    Happy Home Fairy said...

    This post was wonderful! I am a big fan of those fun napkins. Here is a clever idea that we use as a lunchbox surprise every now and then...

    Thanks for the great ideas!

    Fatima Almahdi said...

    great ideas >> many thanks