Lunch boxes are a great place to start a zero-waste journey – the routine and regularity of packing lunches 5 days a week, while a little overwhelming at times, is an opportunity to integrate reusable food wrap and save so much plastic wrap, packaging and waste – it just makes sense to knock that baby over!
The other reason I love the lunch box solution is because we’re teaching our sweet babes about what is normal and ordinary and part of life… When we finish our apple we can wrap up the core and pop it back in the lunch box so that we can use our Apiwraps again, and give the core to the chickens, worms or compost when we get home.
Thinking like that from a young age makes some impact don’t you think?
While I’m all about convenience and easing up the huge expectations we put on ourselves as mothers, there are some things that could be false economies – yogurt snacks in little plastic pots is one of my pet peeves. All that packaging! Being used then tossed into landfill! When we could spend a fraction of the price and make a healthier version in about 5 minutes, showing our children that it’s easy to be responsible and care for how our actions impact the world.
Here are some of our regular lunch box solutions:
1. The cut up apple
We love the ease and prettiness of an apple cut with a press… and it’s the best snack in Autumn and winter when apples are in season! Perfect with a small Apiwrap from our Cheese Lover’s Pack
In our home we follow a traditional diet (based on Weston Price’s research) and fruit is
accompanied with some protein to ward off sugar highs. Cheese keeps beautifully in an Apiwrap and is easy for little fingers to unwrap and wrap again. Need more smalls? Our Cheese Lover Pack has two!
Our littlies can’t get enough sushi! While it’s a bit time consuming and fiddly, knowing that they’ll eat it all up, and that there’s no white rice or sugar (yes sushi rice usually has sugar mixed through!) makes it worthwhile. Fillings like left over meat and carrots, cucumber and red pepper work well. When you wrap food in a quality beeswax wrap that seals onto itself well everything stays tucked up tight and is ready for lunch time. A medium Apiwrap is perfect for this – and funnily enough is in our Cheese Lover Pack too!
4. Small Sandwiches
Sourdough sandwiches with butter, cheese and salad from the garden are a bit of our treat in our mostly bread-free house. A great hack for your zero waste lunch in a hurry is to keep a loaf of sliced bread in the freezer so you’re ready for any of those mornings that go pear shaped! In fact a cheese sandwich can be apiwrapped and frozen ready to go! A smaller child sized sandwich can be stacked in two halves to fit in a medium sized Apiwrap or more generous sandwiches can be safely transported in our Sandwich Wrap.
5. Sweet Potato Wraps
A massive shout out to our favourite GF low carb, additive free wraps – these are fantastic and stay soft and easy to manage as well as tasting great. Our favourite filling is egg and salad – hardboiled eggs, chopped and mixed with a little sour cream and chopped lettuce from the garden. Our large Apiwrap is the perfect reusable wrap for wraps! Cover all your bases with our Kitchen Basics Pack – setting you up with a small medium and a large Apiwrap.
6. Homemade Yogurt Pots
Yogurt from the shops is loaded with sugar, and hyped children are not our cup of tea! We love Kids Konserve for our yogurt containers, they never leak and years later, they’re still going strong – worth the investment! We love a thick greek yogurt topped with chopped fruit and a good serve of tahini for extra fats and protein. When we’re really organised we’ll have a big batch of stewed apples on at some point in the Autumn. They freeze really well and we can use them through the rest of the year. *Kids Konserve Medium Sized Container
7. Hummus And Veggie Sticks
Such a classic and full of fresh veg and high protein! We prep a batch on the weekend to keep us going for snacks during the week. You can really save some cash by soaking and cooking up your own chickpeas (and save the plastic contamination from cans – BPA free is great, but they’re not free from pthathates which are even more insidious). Carrots are always a winner for dipping *Kids Konserve Small Container Apiwraps Small
8. Drink Bottles
Having fresh filtered water for school means hydrated and chem-free kids. The flouride/chlorine/microorganism laden water from the tap is not what we drink at home, and shouldn’t be what we drink at school.
9. Thermos Lunches
A warming chicken soup, left over spaghetti or a hearty lentil stew is a great winter lunch, we love our Thermos brand containers, they keep lunch hot all day (even leftovers come home still hot!) and they have a neat little fold up spoon inside.
10. Sturdy Insulated Lunch Boxes
A sturdy insulated lunchbox is a school (or preschool!) essential. Keeping everything tucked in and cool, they last for ages, our cute KeepLeaf lunchbox here is well into it’s 3rd year.