Packing Healthy, Tasty Lunches
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Packing Healthy, Tasty Lunches

The assembly line at the kitchen counter has begun. What to pack? Healthy, tasty lunches for work and school doesn't have to bust the budget. A number of options are available to help. You simply need to shop with a different mindset. Here are a few ideas to help you get started:

  1. Wholegrain breads instead of "brown bread" or tortillas. Buy whole grain breads that pack a punch in nutrition. You can see the bits of grain throughout the bread. Also a variety of tortillas are out there such as spinach, regular, corn, and sundried tomato to make wraps.
  2. Natural lunchmeats and natural nutbutters or Sunbutter. Many companies have natural lunch meats available such as Hormel and Oscar Myer. Use 1 serving on a sandwhich or wrap, then add veggies and a touch of salad dressing or one of the #3 condiments. Is the school a peanut-free place? No problem! A variety of options such as tree nut butters and Sunbutter made from sunflower seeds. You can pour off a bit of the oil, but keep some and stir in. These oils are healthy and necessary for good health.
  3. Avocado spread and mustard. I have an avocado spread recipe you are welcome to use. Also, there are a variety of mustards that don't add a bunch of calories to your lunch. 
  4. Fresh veggies and fruits. Look for in-season fresh fruits and veggies in the produce section. Dried raisins and Craisins a good choices as well as natural applesauce and fruit packed in it's own juice. Skip the chips!
  5. Snack mixes, etc.  Steer clear of pre-made snack mixes and pre-packaged foods. They are high calorie and low nutrition. Instead, I have a  power snack mix you can make yourself without a lot of effort. Also, if the kids really want chips, try Terra Chips. They have some amazing flavors with less fat and salt while offering extra vitamins and minerals.

One important item to make sure you have is a good lunchbox with small ice packs to keep food cold and fresh. If you want to pack food that will stay hot, SubZero has great insulated containers that keep hot foods hot for 3 hours and cold foods cold for 5 hours. You can pack that leftover soup or pasta! Lunches don't have to be dull or take a ton of time to prepare. You are off to a great year!

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