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Dine Without Whine - A Family 

Friendly Weekly Menu Plan
Menu Plan Monday: Lunches!
You can find Menu Plan Monday at orgjunkie.com.



Usually on Menu Plan Mondays I post what I'm going to eat for dinner. But today I'm going to do something a little different. I want to talk about lunches.


Do you ever get sick of lunches? We seem to eat the same thing, over and over again, and it's not always that good. But we don't want lunches to be too expensive, and we don't want them to take that long to make. So what can we do to make them more interesting?


Here are some lunch ideas I have. But I'd love yours, too! So read along, and then please leave a comment.


Sandwich & Veggies

Typical lunch! Not too exciting, and kids often sigh when you announce it's sandwiches. So here's how to spice up that kind of lunch a bit.


Add veggies to the sandwiches. Not all kids will like this, but my daughters will eat all kinds: cucumbers, peppers, alfalfa sprouts, lettuce. So instead of just adding lettuce, add something else. It makes it crunchier!


We also bought a sandwich grill recently, and the kids love to grill ham & cheese pitas. That's another treat, and it turns sandwiches into a hot meal. The grill was a find for $2.99 at a thrift store, and boy have we gotten our money's worth!


Another way to make sandwiches better is to serve them with vegetables for dipping. I make up dip with a dip mix and then sour cream and mayonnaise, and it's great.



Soup & Veggies


My kids' favourite lunch is when I make homemade soup. Not the canned kind; actually make it from scratch. But this isn't nearly as hard as it sounds. Start with homemade chicken stock, which I keep in my freezer. Or, failing that, just buy the cartons of stock. Add cooked chicken or turkey, some macaroni or egg noodles, and some chopped carrots and celery. Near the end of the cooking time you can throw in frozen peas or frozen corn. I'll add a few herbs, too. I make a lot of soup, because we all often have two bowlfulls. And the thicker the better. But it's really healthy, and not too expensive.


Leftovers


I hate this for lunch. Not because it's not good, but because I like saving leftovers for dinner. But in a pinch I'll make them go further. If we have leftover potatoes, I'll often make what we call "hash". I'll throw the potatoes in a frying pan, with leftover gravy or a can of gravy. Add chopped turkey or chicken, some frozen corn, and maybe some carrots, and sprinkle with salt and pepper and garlic salt. Just mash it all together. It sounds gross, and looks gross, but it's good.


Mini-Pizzas


If you're ever desperate for something to serve at a birthday party, these are always a big hit. Buy English muffins and pizza sauce, and have everyone make their own! You don't have to fight over who does or doesn't like pepperoni or mushrooms. Just toast them first in the oven at 400 until the English muffins are slightly crispy. Then add the pizza sauce and the toppings, and sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 400 for about 12 minutes.

Tacos

Tacos don't take long to make. You just need to fry up some ground beef and add the spice mixture. Cut up some lettuce and cheese, and get some salsa, and you're ready. Kids love this one, too, but I don't make it very often because it tends towards the more expensive side for a lunch meal.

Bacon and Eggs

Finally, another lunch that works well is breakfast! The kids like bacon and eggs, and we sometimes make Egg McMuffins for lunch, with English muffins, eggs, bacon, and cheese. I just don't do this very often because I don't think it's the healthiest lunch.

The Typical Lunch Fare: Kraft Dinner

Of course, there's always Kraft Dinner. Or those hot dog weiners that you wrap up in those rolls and bake. Kids love that. But I don't. I don't think it's healthy, and I don't feel particularly well after eating them. So I'm always looking for slightly healthier alternatives.

What do you make for lunch? Share it with me, because I'd love some new ideas!
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2 Comments:

At 9:26 AM , Blogger alecat said…

As I began reading your post, I thought I'd tell you about Mini Pizzas from English Muffins, but you already had it listed there, lol!

We also use pita bread to make 'wraps' from leftovers, esp. if you can put in some grated cheese and then toast them in the oven.

Another quick idea is too cook up some rice (microwave helps) and toss together with some diced vegies and any meat on hand (eg: today we had rice with spinach, tomato, cucumber, avocado and diced chicken breast, with a dab of mayo). It's kind of another take on using left-overs, but it's also great if you can make most of it ahead.

 

At 10:33 AM , Blogger Melissa, Multi-Tasking Mama said…

Lunch is a pain- you are lucky that your kids like veggies- mine do too so we make chef salads a lot for lunch!

Stop by my blog when you have a minute- I have an award for you!

 
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About Me

Name: Sheila

Home: Belleville, Ontario, Canada

About Me: I'm a Christian author of a bunch of books, and a frequent speaker to women's groups and marriage conferences. Best of all, I love homeschooling my daughters, Rebecca and Katie. And I love to knit. Preferably simultaneously.

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