by Foodlets in Family, Recipes, September 7th, 2016
by Sara Levine in Family, Recipes, August 23rd, 2016
With four kids who take lunches to school every day, I’m a bento box convert — practically an evangelist. That’s because the benefits of packing lunch in a bento box are just so many. The format makes it easy to fill without having to wonder if you’ve packed too little or too much food, and everything stays in place (without touching each other). The main hook: Everything looks better laid out like this. If you’ve ever served kids anything, you know that a first impression can often make all the difference in what they decide to try.
Here’s my strategy.
by Foodlets in Family, Recipes, April 12th, 2016
Sandwiches have been the default lunchbox meal for generations. Rightfully so: They’re easy, they’re portable, they require no utensils, and — if well-constructed — they hold up well until lunchtime. But what to do if your kid is just not that into meals between bread this year? Never fear. These kid-friendly recipes are nearly as simple — and just as portable — as a PB&J. Read more
by Allison Milam in Community, January 29th, 2016
Need new lunch ideas? We’ve got them all: hot and cold ideas, dishes you can make ahead and some you can make in a flash. These are 10 kid-tested ideas for lunches that hit the spot — and stick with your little (or big) ones all day long.
Kid-Friendly Pasta Salad
What kid could resist Ree Drummond’s simple pasta salad, with big chunks of cheddar cheese and juicy tomatoes swimming in a sweet, tangy mayo dressing?
by Sara Levine in Recipes, January 11th, 2016
No matter your Instagram following, your filtering prowess or your like-to-minute ratio, nothing truly proves #deliciousness like an old-fashioned, ready-set-go contest. We’re coming your way in search of the greatest creations made in your very own kitchen. When we call out the theme on Instagram, put your cooking skills to the test by whipping up your go-to Food Network recipe, snapping a photo and tagging #FoodNetworkFaves for your chance to be featured on FN Dish!
They may say breakfast is the most-important meal of the day, but whoever said that first hasn’t felt the midday hunger pangs. In the spirit of eating better in the new year, we’re all about bring-your-own-lunch picks for work or school. When we took a scroll through our #FoodNetworkFaves feed, we saw a whole lot more than limp, sorry sandwiches. Whether you were packing them up for your own lunch or for your kid’s, these satisfying lunch picks inspire those of us who buy lunch on a day-to-day basis.
by Emily Lee in Recipes, January 2nd, 2016
Avoid the sad-desk-lunch rut in 2016 by kicking things off with these genius just-add-water meals from Food Network Kitchen. No matter if your limited office “kitchen” doesn’t even have a microwave. All you need is boiling water from the coffeemaker and you’ve got a hot, satisfying lunch. Read more
by Foodlets in Family, Recipes, September 12th, 2015
Winter break is just long enough to fall out of good eating habits, so seize the first weekend of 2016 as a chance to prepare a batch of healthy lunches to usher in the new year. When mapping out a meal plan, look for recipes that are quick but balanced — preferably ones that freeze well and yield large batches. If you’re making lunch for the whole family, it can be tricky finding dishes that pique everyone’s interest. With that in mind, we’ve got a versatile lineup of soups, wraps and more that will carry you through a week of wholesome eating, whether you’re packing a lunchbox for your elementary school-aged kid or your own office lunch hour.
by Sara Levine in Family, Recipes, September 9th, 2015
Some parents meticulously pack their kids’ lunches the night before, ensuring a smooth start the next day. I am not one of them. My husband takes our kids to school every morning at 7:30 a.m. And every morning at 7:15 a.m. I start making lunch. “OK, we’re in the No Request Zone,” I’ll announce to all four small fry who are still eating breakfast, not yet even starting to wonder where their shoes are. But with a few handy strategies for banging out healthy lunches in a hurry, we rarely have a lunch-related disaster. (Getting all the kids out the door and buckled into their car seats, however, is another matter. See: shoes.) That’s thanks to this list of reliably quick lunch ideas:
DIY Cucumber Sandwiches: Think Lunchables with a fresh twist. Chop up a cucumber and put it in the lunchbox. Then set a small pile of turkey, ham and/or cheese next to it, and let the kids put together their own sandwiches at lunchtime.
by Emily Lee in Recipes, August 19th, 2015
The new school year is in full swing, and to match that brand-new backpack and those shiny unused school supplies, you want to start your lunch game strong. These lunchbox combos from Food Network Kitchen are so easy to make and pack that you won’t tire of them by October — and neither will the kids. Each includes a fun main recipe, plus all the tasty extras to round out a complete, balanced lunch. Warning: Lunch-packing parents may want to assemble an extra box for themselves, and we fully approve! Read more
by Foodlets in Family, Recipes, May 28th, 2015
With another summer heading toward its end, it’s time to start thinking about lunchbox-friendly foods — namely, foods that can withstand a morning without refrigeration. Insulated lunchboxes do their part to keep meals fresh, as do ice packs. But ice packs are heavy, and they tend to go missing. A few judiciously frozen items can do double duty, keeping your lunchbox cold while slowly thawing in time to eat. Frozen water bottles, or frozen packs of applesauce or yogurt, should do the trick. But as a general rule, it’s best to steer clear of meat and dairy if you can’t guarantee refrigeration. Just in time for another school year, here are some no-fridge foods that kids — and adults — can look forward to opening.
Nuts, Berries and Seeds
Lunchtime feels eons away without a midmorning snack to hold you over, and trail mixes, granola bars and cereal treats are all tasty fuel sources. Food Network Kitchen’s Honey-Nut Cereal Treats (pictured at top) are loaded with protein and fiber in the form of peanuts and almonds. If your kids appreciate sweet and chewy dried fruits, try Claire Robinson’s easy Pumpkin Seed-Dried Cherry Trail Mix. Alton Brown’s classic rendition of crunchy Granola Bars is another snack you can feel good about packing. This lower-calorie option studded with sliced almonds, dried apricots and berries. Before you pack any of these in your child’s lunchbox, err on the side of caution and make sure no one in the class has a nut allergy.
Tired-mom confession: I’m kind of psyched for summer because I won’t have the pressure of packing a single lunchbox for nine whole weeks. (Yep, ours is a year-round school, but still…) Summer lunches offer a bit more flexibility and require less planning, and sometimes the kids can even help.
Lunches That (Even Little) Kids Can Make Themselves:
1. Strawberry & PB Wraps: Slather peanut butter on a whole-wheat tortilla, sprinkle with diced strawberries and wrap it up like a burrito for a hand-held meal.
2. Pita Pockets: Whip up the egg salad (with a kid-friendly ingredient), chicken salad or even Ellie Krieger’s healthier version of chicken curry salad and show the kids how to stuff a couple of spoonfuls into each pocket.
3. Sub Sandwiches on a Stick: Set out the fixings — chunks of cheese, cherry tomatoes, cubes of thick bread, pickles cut into large dice, rolls of salami — and let kids slide everything onto a bamboo skewer.
4. Watermelon Gazpacho: Taking a tip from the amazing Barefoot Contessa’s original 5-star cold soup recipe, give the kids a turn at the food processor with this fruit-filled summertime soup.