School lunches can get a little routine for everyone. I get tired of making them, and my kids get tired of eating them. So when I start to see lunches coming home with a lot of half-eaten food, it’s time to make some changes. I usually turn to dips. My kiddos love dipping. If they can dunk their food into a sauce or dip of some kind, they will eat just about anything.
Nut butters make healthy dips for all kinds of healthy, easy-to-pack lunch items. Nut butters are fantastic sources of healthy fats, vitamins and protein. It’s easy to pair nut butters with multigrain crackers, pretzels, apples and celery. Almond butter and peanut butter have a natural sweetness from the nuts, so buy those without added fats or sugar. Check the labels! I have been surprised at the hidden added sugars in nut butters. Go with SunButter if your school is nut-free. My kids balk a little at the unsweetened SunButter so I add just a little honey to it. Add a banana, and this is a very well-rounded lunch. My son loves bananas but complains that his whole lunch just tastes like a banana. The taste of bananas complements the nut butters, so no more complaints!
This lunch is no less healthy than a peanut butter & jelly sandwich with chips. In fact, your kiddo will get even more nutrition by adding apples, celery, multigrain crackers, plaintain chips or tortilla chips. Add a cheese stick or some yogurt for kiddos with big appetites.
Food Should Taste Good makes Kettle Corn Tortilla Chips with just a hint of sweetness, and they are delicious dipped in nut butter. Check out my PB&J Nachos recipe for a healthy and delicious after school snack using Kettle Corn Tortilla Chips.
The lunch box containers shown here are from Sistema. Sistema makes easy-to-open, leakproof containers perfect for little hands and little lunchboxes. You can find these containers at The Container Store, Target and Amazon.