Nutritious foods play an essential role in the holistic development of our kids, so we must know how to deal with picky eaters. You know, kids are naturally picky eaters because they still have sensitive taste buds. With that, creative bento lunch box ideas are among the best options to attract kids and let them eat their food without having a hard time consuming them. Remember that healthy meal prep doesn’t need to be always expensive. Most of them are simple and affordable only if we will be more resourceful and creative in preparing them. There are plenty of ways to prepare them, making your kids so excited about their packed lunch at school. We hope you find these 25 bento lunch ideas as creative and nutritious as we did!
Turn your breakfast to lunch with some pancakes, peanut butter, and fruits, such as strawberries and grapes, along with a small cheese. You can also buy frozen mini pancakes if you don’t feel like making a bunch of them for the week. It will also save your time preparing for school in the morning!
Muffins are so easy to bake, but you can bake them in the night to save your time during the morning school prep. Simply serve them with baby carrots and applesauce. If your kids have a big appetite, feel free to add more muffins and side dishes to it.
Serve your kids with grilled cheese on lunch! Don’t worry about being cold, because they’re still delicious even so. Make two or three slices of cheese between two slices of bread, then spread butter or mayo on the outside to make a grilled cheese. Toast each side and serve with some blueberries, cucumber slices, and a fantastic snack like popcorn!
Prepare mac & cheese with sliced hotdogs for lunch! This lunch is a heavy meal for kids, but if they have a big appetite, you can also add some celery sticks, grapes, and snap pea crisps for lighter snacks on the side.
5. Ready-Made Falafel Lunch
Buy some ready-made falafel at the grocery for easy meal prep, then add some cucumber sauce. Round it up with some pretzel sticks, blueberries, and snap peas for a healthier lunch. Your kids will definitely love this lunch idea!
6. Easy Chicken Sandwich Recipe
Make this chicken sandwich with mayo spread, chicken breast, and a few cheese slices on a bun. But if you’re child isn’t into mayo, replace it with ranch dressing or let them eat it plain! Serve it with celery and peanut butter dip, cheese crackers, and grapes on the side. You can also use wheat bread or white bread, depending on your preference.
Cook cheese quesadilla for your kids with taco cheese spread on a big soft taco tortilla. Fold in half, and toast each side before the cheese begins to melt. Serve it with guacamole and salsa dip. You can also have sliced bell peppers and sweet potato crackers on the side, depending on what your kids like.
Make your pizza prep healthier for your kids with this DIY Pizzables! Prepare the pizza ingredients separately on their lunch box and let them dress their own pizza at lunch using their favorite flatbread, rounds, tortillas or even bagels as the base. Your kids will surely enjoy their lunch with their very own pizza!
Some kids like waffles more than pancakes, so you can prepare those instead of the latter. Make homemade waffles and cut them into strips for dipping. Serve it with two hard-boiled eggs for protein and strawberries on the side. You can also buy ready-made waffles and simply toast them if you want to save some of your time.
10. Green Monster School Lunch
Green foods are so healthy for our body, so if your kids love these greens, you should try this Green Monster School Lunch! Prepare your bento box with pesto gluten-free pasta with parmesan, kiwi, grapes and avocado salad, roasted seaweed, cucumbers and dye-free candy.
11. Cheesy And Healthy Chicken Pasta
Kids love pasta, so here’s another one for them! This Chicken Cheesy Pasta only has four simple ingredients that you can easily find at home: pasta, chicken, oil, and parmesan cheese. You can also prepare it ahead of time and put it in the fridge to save your time in the morning prep for school. Serve it with some snap pea crisps, cherry tomatoes, and apple slices to add more variations, making it more attractive to kids.
Bake some extra potatoes at dinner and pack them in the morning for your kid’s lunch. It’s filled with vitamins, and you can make it more nutritious with green fruits and veggies on the side. You can also add some delicious chocolate treats for your kids to enjoy their lunch more!
13. Gluten-Free Chicken Pesto Pasta
We cannot expect all kids to love plain pesto pasta, some like them with a twist! So, here’s the Gluten-Free Chicken Pesto Pasta for your kids. It also comes with corn in it, so there will be a taste of sweetness. Add Pure Organics Apple Strip, cucumbers, blackberries, and walnuts, making this lunch healthier.
14. Fluffy Spinach Egg Muffins
Fill your kids with vegetarian protein and iron in a kid-approved way! Make a batch of Spinach Egg Muffins ahead, and pack them in lunches through the week to have a time-savvy meal prep in the mornings. Pair these muffins with cantaloupe, cucumbers, and cereal.
15. Delicious Chicken Nugget Dunkers
Kids love chicken nuggets, and it’s perfect for any meal prep! You can pair these Chicken Nugget Dunkers with any dipping sauce, depending on your kid’s favorite! Add some fruits, sweet potato crackers, and string cheese for more nutrients.
16. DIY PB&J With Crackers
If you want to save your time from cooking various foods in one meal, you can have this DIY PB&J With Crackers. It is simply served with crackers, dipping sauces like jam, almond butter, or peanut butter, carrots, olives, golden kiwi, mini grapes, strawberries, raspberries, and mini dark chocolate chips. Of course, choosing which food only to put in the lunch box is another option for you.
Transform your rotisserie chicken at dinner to a succulent salad for your kid’s lunch the next day. You can buy your chicken at dinner, especially for busy parents, or have it done at home! Add biscuits to your child’s lunch for a variety of meals.
18. Easy-Made Cinnamon Yogurt Platter
Kids love cinnamon and yogurt! What more if you’ll mix these two for a dipper bento box? Slice up some apples for dipping, and add some pretzels and strawberries. You can also have chocolate chips and let your kids throw them into the yogurt for some mixing. It is very convenient as you won’t be cooking to have this meal prep for your little ones.
Teach kids a simple act of independence with Build-Your-Own Chicken Tacos. Simply pack all the toppings separately and let them wrap it all at once. Add cheese, spinach, salsa, olives, or something else your kids like to put with shredded chicken and fluffy tortillas.
20. Homemade Peanut Butter Crackers
Instead of buying peanut butter crackers in the groceries, why not trying making your own Homemade Peanut Butter Crackers? It’s simple and easy. Just add in some sliced bell peppers, bananas, string cheese, and peanut butter cups!
Upgrade the classic ham and cheese sandwich with this Tasty Ham and Cream Cheese Pinwheels. Serve it with some berries, cherry tomatoes, and baby carrots, adding more colors to these tasty pinwheels.
Most kids love eggs, and if yours is one of those egg lovers, this lunch idea is for you. It’s easy to prepare since eggs are cooked only in few minutes. You can cook as many as you want, depending on your kid’s appetite, then just add some bell pepper and cucumber slices and a treat of granola bar. You can also replace the treat with your kid’s favorite, so it’s flexible and up to you.
These Baked Ravioli Dippers are best for dinner, especially when you have no enough time to prepare. With that, you can make some extra ravioli and save it for your kid’s lunch the next day together with their favorite dipping sauce. Don’t forget to add some sliced apples and green peas on the side of it!
Some kids have a big appetite, so this Chicken Fried Rice is best for you! Just sauté garlic, onion, chicken, rice, corn, peas, and carrots in sesame oil and coconut amino, and then add eggs and a bit of soy sauce. You can also use butter or olive oil as an alternative to sesame oil. Then, pair it with edamame, peaches, broccoli, ranch, raspberries with apples, and a few dark chocolate-covered raisins. You can also add some more art with the fruits if you have shapers at home.
Kids love crescent rolls! If your kids are among these lovers, this Turkey Sandwich Cresent Rolls is for you. Just wrap the turkey inside for a quick and fun lunch. Then, serve it with fruit and veggies for a great lunch. Besides fruits and veggies, yummy treats are also options to include in this bento lunch.
You see, these bento lunch ideas for kids aren’t expensive to prepare. Some of them are from dinner leftovers. Others are always present in our kitchen or backyard garden. At the same time, some are available in groceries and supermarkets at meager costs. Kids love artistic things; thus, lunch with lots of love and creativity from their mums! So, enjoy your meal prep and feel free to explore your kitchen!