Get the kids (and grown-up kids) excited about lunchtimes with colourful lunch boxes, insulated lunch bags and totes for keeping food fresh.
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Children will love taking their packed lunch to school if the box or bag has a funky design, featuring some of their favourite TV and film characters. But lunch boxes are not just for kids, and adults can also choose from super stylish, simple pieces or a patterned, vibrant delight.
Whatever you prefer to eat, a functional, attractive lunch box will help foster good habits by making you want to bring your lunch from home.
Lunch-box-friendly food ideas
The traditional option for a lunch box is a sandwich, and it's still hard to beat. In fact, you can buy lunch boxes that come as purpose-built sandwich containers, if this tried-and-tested lunchtime classic is your preference.
Another great way to save money on lunches and still stay healthy is to repackage the previous night's leftovers, although take note that any leaf salads are likely to be wilted and unappetising by the next day. Foods that hold their form well in a sealed lunch box are couscous or rice dishes - salads made from pasta, grains or legumes, quiches and frittatas, and muffins, slices and tarts (savoury or sweet).
Consider packing some form of protein, whether it's animal protein - like chicken, tuna, hard-boiled egg or other meats - or vegetable protein such as tofu. A piece of fruit or berries, hummus or raw vegetables can be a nutritious mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack to stave off the tummy rumbles and bring up the blood sugar levels. Something simple like sliced apples with peanut butter could do the trick nicely.
Don't forget drink bottles to complement your lunch box and, if they're insulated for heat, you can use them for delicious soups in the colder weather.
Getting creative with lunch boxes for kids
Fussy eaters can sometimes need some extra help when it comes to encouraging them to open their lunch boxes. But if they're excited about what could be inside, then that's half the battle.
One of the best lunch box hacks is to choose a segmented or bento box style lunch box (decorated with novelty characters, colours or designs, of course) so you can offer them a variety of fun snacks to whet their appetite. You might like to put berries in one section, a sandwich in the other, something sweet like a homemade cookie in another and so on.
It's not just the variety of the food groups in the bento box that are important - you'll also want to make them look fun. Why not use cookie cutters to cut the sandwiches into shapes such as stars and even gingerbread men? Remove the crusts and stamp funny faces into the bread, or you could even leave little notes in the lunch box to tell your kids how much you love them.
Use food storage containers, canisters and mason jars to prepare food items in advance, so you're not scrambling in the morning before school to get everything ready. Plan in advance and mix up your ideas to ensure your kids are surprised every time they open their lunch box.
Find the right lunch boxes, insulated lunch bags and totes at Spotlight
Ready to buy? Shop through our extensive range of lunch boxes and buy online. Make sure you also browse our buying guides on maximising your kitchen storage and how to organise your pantry for more ideas on making food preparation easier.
Alternatively, head into a Spotlight store to check out the different lunch boxes, insulated lunch bags and totes available where you speak with one of our friendly customer service team who'll be happy to answer your questions.