I am a stay-at-home mom and to be honest it took me a while to really get into my rhythm with daytime meals. I have my moments where I cook a hot meal for all of us, but if I'm honest, I just don't want to get more dishes dirty or spend more time over the stove than I have to.
I think we all can appreciate a no-cook meal option, especially when the kids go off to school during the day and need a cold lunch option.
Here are my go-to lunches that do not require much of any work!
Hard boiled eggs
Sliced deli meat
Summer sausage slices
Greek yogurt (plain, full-fat)
Healthy fat options:
Nuts or trail mix
Dark chocolate (75%+)
Healthy Carbohydrate options:
Any fruit, we love bananas, apples oranges, and mango
Frozen fruit is handy and cheap! Frozen peaches, mango, or berries are great to pair with yogurt or cottage cheese
Veggies: we love baby carrots, celery, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, and mini peppers
Frozen veggies like peas or sweet potatoes can be warmed up easily in the microwave, top with a little butter for added healthy fat
Beans: my kids could snack on black beans or chickpeas all day, just open the can and rinse them off!
Rice cakes: these are my bread alternative. I will make an open-faced sandwich with them, top them with peanut butter and sliced banana, top with tuna or egg salad, or just eat them plain
Nut Thin crackers can be fun to let the kids dip into a chicken or tuna salad for some added crunch
So just grab a couple items from each category and you'll have a filling, energy-providing lunch for yourself and your littles with little effort!
As your kids get older encourage them to pick their favorites and add it to their own lunchbox or plate. I prompt my now 4 year old to grab her choice of protein, fat and veggie and she feels like she's making her own lunch, which she actually is when it's this easy!
Real food is simple food :)