Skip to main content

7 fun back-to-school lunch ideas kids will love

Before you know it, the summer will be over and the kids will go back to school. Getting back into a good morning routine isn’t easy, and putting school lunches together can be kind of a chore for parents. Once in a while, you may even forget to pack a lunch altogether. (It happens to the best of us.) We’ve come up with some fun and creative lunch ideas that you’ll not only be happy to pack for your kids, but that your kids will happily gobble up!

Back-to-school lunch ideas

Pizza wraps

These are so easy to make, and they’re such a nice variation from the usual cheese or peanut butter and jelly sandwich. All you’ll need are some flour tortillas, tasty pepperoni, onions and peppers (if your kids like them), and some part-skim mozzarella cheese. You don’t even have to bake them, and they’re so easy to throw together on busy mornings. If you want, you can even add some marinara or pizza sauce for an extra kick that your kids will love.

Fruit Salad
Nguyen Thai Lai / Shutterstock

Fruit salad

This is a great make-ahead meal for your children that tastes like a sweet treat but is full of various nutrients and vitamins. Tasty fruits may include strawberries, cantaloupe, bananas, and more. Not only that, you can even think outside of the box and do something like putting them in a wrap with some cream cheese. You could even put them on a skewer for a delicious fruit-kabob. There is a lot that you can do with fruit when it comes to mealtime.

Homemade “Lunchables”

We know how much children love their boxed lunches like Lunchables. It’s easy for them to eat. But the ones in the store may not always be the healthiest. So, why don’t you make your very own at home together? It could be a fun activity that you and your little one can do the night before school, and you can have them pick out the foods that they want in their homemade lunch. They will love being a part of it. A great place to start, depending on the age of your child, is with crackers, grapes, celery sticks, little pretzels, small fruits, and even a little cheese. It is a great way to “mix up” lunch.

PB&J kabobs

Instead of the tired old peanut butter and jelly on two pieces of bread to make a sandwich, a unique way to present it to your child (again, based on age), is to surprise them with peanut butter and jelly kabobs instead. You’ll cut up the original sandwich down into cubes, which will go on the skewer, and then you can add fresh fruit like bananas or strawberries.

Super sandwich sushi

If your little ones are not ready to try sushi, that’s okay, you can create your own with some lunch meat, bread, and cheese. Simply roll it up into a twirl and voila! You’ll have a yummy piece of “sushi” that the kids will enjoy. Some other nutritional snacks that pair well with this are strawberries or grapes, and perhaps some celery or carrots. They will feel like they are having sushi just like mom and dad.

Corndog muffins

These corndog muffins from Red Tricycle are fun little bites that your children can enjoy as a delicious lunch. They have all the taste of a regular size corndog but in a tiny form. The kids will love showing their friends these little creations. They take almost no time to make. Your kids will love opening their lunch box and finding these yummy treats. They pair well with grapes, celery, and more.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Breakfast for lunch

Who says exactly when breakfast is over? If you have a kid who loves their breakfast foods, send them with breakfast to school for lunch and even snack time. Nothing says that you can’t pack a bit of their favorite cereal, alongside a delicious bagel with their favorite type of cream cheese. Pack some yummy fruit along with it, and you’ll have a total and complete breakfast for lunch.

There are plenty of different combinations that you can try with your child for a winning lunch experience. When the kids go back to school, you’ll want to have a smooth transition, and mealtime is a big part of that. If you want to make a unique lunch for your child, try one of these fun ideas that they’ll ask for again and again.

Editors' Recommendations

Jennifer Passmore
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Jennifer has written two books on how to deal with living with chronic illness using the power of positivity. She has written…
7 avocado-based baby food combinations your baby will love
Try these avocado combos for you little one's next meals
Baby in highchair eating avocado puree.

Avocado-based baby food offers a nutritious first step in introducing solid foods to babies. To begin with, avocados are a superfood that contains 20 vitamins and minerals, including folate, potassium, iron, zinc, and vitamins A, C, E, and K, plus several variants of vitamin B. They're also packed with protein, fiber, and healthy fats and contain no cholesterol or sodium. Avocados are very low in saturated fat, too. Babies need omega-3 fatty acids to promote brain and eye development, and avocados are one of the fattiest plant foods that are a great source of oleic acid, an important omega-3 that's also found in olive oil.
Conveniently, avocados are also soft and easy for babies to gum and swallow. They're simple for busy parents and caregivers to mash with a fork or puree in a food processor. Plus, avocados are easy to combine with other healthy foods for simple baby foods. So, which avocado baby foods should you make at home? Here are seven simple recipe ideas for your little one to enjoy that are a snap to make.

Easy, fun-flavored yummy avocado/fruit puree
For a quick avocado baby food meal, puree avocado in a food processor or small blender with a sweet fruit of your choice, and your baby will gobble it up. Here are some fruits that make a tasty combination with avocado:

Read more
7 fun 4th of July games the whole family can play
Make Independence Day sparkle with these 4th of July ideas
Two kids sitting in front of a U.S. flag

Many families mark the Fourth of July holiday with backyard picnics and barbecues. Sometimes, relatives and friends come over, but usually, the patriotic holiday is a time for families to spend a bit of quality time together enjoying parades and fireworks.

Having a fun menu of 4th of July games for the family is a fabulous way to spend this summertime holiday, especially if you are hosting a celebration. These family activities also help make the time between that morning parade and the evening fireworks go a lot faster for excited little ones who just can't wait. If you need some inspiration for 4th of July ideas for family fun, don't roll the dice. We've got sparkling suggestions that will be a big bang.

Read more
These TikTok hacks will get your kids eating more fruits and veggies this summer
Reduce food waste with these tasty food hacks your kids will love
Mother and daughter eating vegetables

The struggle is real when it comes to feeding kids. Children may love strawberries one day, and hate them the next, usually right after you've stocked your fridge with freshly picked berries! Or maybe your little one loves to eat apples or bananas, but is just too little to eat the entire fruit. Dealing with picky eaters and food waste can be frustrating and hard on the wallet.

Amy Palanjian is a recipe developer and cookbook author who goes by the handle @Yummytoddlerfood on TikTok. She's sharing some of her ingenious hacks that will not only save those bits of leftover fruits and vegetables your little one loves, but Palanjian is also offering excellent tips on how to preserve and serve those healthy foods you may not have thought of.

Read more