30+ Healthy Lunch & Dinner Meal Ideas for Kids
Here are over 30 lunches and dinners that my girls have had (and mostly enjoyed) over the last couple of months.
There are two things that I have been playing around with in the last couple of months, that I wanted to let you in on.
The first thing, is instead of packing Ellie’s lunch to include all of the colors of the rainbow (or as many as I can get), I have been playing around with packing only ONE color in her boxes. I have done a pink, red, yellow and green box so far and they have been a huge hit!
Although, it might seem intimidating to make, these one color boxes are actually a cinch to pull together. I usually start with the main dish and then pull out everything in my pantry and fridge that is the same color and go from there. Try making a single color box for your little one, take a pic and tag me @babyfoode. I would love to see what you are making!
Secondly, I have been playing around with serving our dinners family style instead of plated on their usual white plates. Both Ellie and Parker seem to love when I serve dinner this way and they both tend to put WAY more veggies on their plates, and eat them, when they are in charge of spooning them onto their plate themselves versus when I just set their plates with food in front of them.
Hey, whatever works!
So, if you have a picky eater, you might want to try this method out.
The only bummer is that it creates more dishes! So pick a night where you will have the extra time and are not in a super frantic rush.
If you want even more inspiration, go to my What the Kiddos Ate Section to see a lot more of our past meals.
For more up-to-the-minute meals, follow me on Instagram where I try to post at least one of our meals per day.
Ellie’s School Lunches
1. Pink Flower Power Box – flower pb&j sandwich, red berry salad, homemade granola, mango yogurt and dark chocolate chips.
2. Hello Yellow Box – leftover yellow coconut rice and curry + lemon chicken, dried apple slices, yellow melon balls, pineapple, cheddar cheese and yellow pepper sticks.
3. Lucky Green Box – spinach tortellini with basil + lemon pesto, kiwi slices, spinach muffins, pistachios, snap peas and green pepper sticks.
4. Red Love Box – raspberry jam + cream cheese heart sandwich, cherry tomatoes with basil dipping sauce, strawberry + raspberry finger salad and a dark chocolate cherry + almond cluster.
5. Snacks-On-The-Go Boxes – string cheese, apples + lemon juice, quick made trail-mix (raisins, dried cranberries, cashews, dark chocolate candy and gummy hearts from their Valentine’s Day present)
6. Pizza for Lunch Box – spinach + basil pizza roll-up, berry salad, carrot + snap peas with poppyseed dressing, dried cherries and peanut butter + cinnamon popcorn.
7. Hummus Box – hummus (store bought) with veggies sticks, crackers and cheese, spring fling finger salad (kiwi, avocado, pear, edamame and lime juice), blackberries + clementines and dark chocolate covered raisins.
8. Pesto Pasta Box – spinach + basil pesto pasta with chicken sausage, strawberry applesauce, snapeas and a cutie.
9. Veggie Chili for a Cold Day – veggie + bean chili with cheese topping, mini corn bread muffins and pear slices.
10. Pita Pizza Box – cheese pita pizza, blackberry + blueberry finger salad, peanut butter + cinnamon popcorn, sweet peppers with dip and dark chocolate covered sunflower seeds.
11. Sandwich-on-a-Stick – pesto chicken + cheese + cherry tomato sandwich on a stick, berries with coconut dip, baked apple + cinnamon chips, dark chocolate treat and snapeas.
12. Breakfast for Lunch – honey greek yogurt with cherry + almond chia seed jam swirl, citrus finger salad, kiwi slice, beet chocolate muffins with cream cheese surprise, homemade granola and dried fruit.
13. Pizza Box – leftover pizza, fruit salad, kiwi slices, mixed dried fruit (cherries, blueberries and raisins) and chopped tri-color peppers.
14. Banana Roll-Up Box – banana + almond butter + cinnamon tortilla roll-up, honey mustard pretzels, melon and blueberries, raspberry + lemon fruit roll-ups and carrot sticks with dip.
15. Hummus and Veggies – lemon hummus with chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots and crackers, strawberry applesauce, grain-free raspberry + chocolate muffin and dried fruit.
16. Warm Pasta Leftovers – spinach tortellini with tomato sauce, berry salad, chewy mint chocolate chip granola bars, and a squeasygear pouch filled with sweet potato puree + applesauce + plain yogurt with a drizzle of honey and a pinch of cinnamon.
17. Oatmeal for Lunch – DIY spiced oatmeal with dried cranberries and blueberries and pecan pieces to add-in, apple + raspberry finger salad and 2 fruit nut bars. I added 1/2 cup of old-fashoined oats to a thermos and then added 1 1/4 cup boiling water, stir everything together and it was done and hot for lunch.
18. BBQ Pizza – bbq chicken pizza, snap peas and dip, pineapple + honeydew + blackberry finger salad, strawberries + pomegranate seeds and raisins.
19. Pesto Pizza – pesto pizza on ciabbita roll, sliced cucumbers with dip, strawberries, cashew + dried fruit and a couple of organic gummies.
20. Easy Quesadilla – Easy cheese + bean quesadilla, cut grapes and blueberries, letter cookies (from trader joes), cuties and snapeas.
(Parker is 22 months, Ellie is 4 and they both eat the same size and serving of food)
21. DIY Chili Night – Veggie + Bean Chili with Avocado, cheese and chips and a strawberry + raspberry finger salad.
22. Deconstructed Salad – baked breaded chicken, cut cucumbers, feta and spiced cashews (I had mine over a big bed of lettuce), avocado chunks and sliced strawberries.
23. Pesto Pasta – spinach + basil pesto pasta with corn and cut tomatoes, sliced olives and blueberries + apricot.
24. Black Bean Tostadas – tostadas with refried black beans, strawberry salsa, avocado and cotija cheese, lime + cilantro rice and carrot sticks.
25. Grilled Chicken Dinner – grilled honey mustard bbq chicken over rice (with side of bbq sauce), spirilized tri-colored carrots + feta + toasted almonds (I had this salad over a bed of spinach) and chopped honeydew melon.
26. Grilled Chicken and Kale – grilled chicken over a kale + apple + walnut salad, cut watermelon and roasted banana + cinnamon ice cream.
27. Cajun Grill Packets – grilled cajun shrimp, corn and potatoes in a foil packed (recipe)
28. Kids in the Kitchen – Ellie made this pesto + pepper pizza by herself, recipe found in this book (which we love!).
29. Pasta Night – creamy shrimp pasta, fennel + celery + parmesan chopped salad and chocolate chip pretzel cookies.
30. Yellow Meal – toasted coconut + turmeric rice with yogurt curry chicken kebobs, powerhouse salad with kale, brussels sprouts, cabbage, yellow pepper, feta and roasted pumpkin seeds, carrot dippers and leftover birthday cake (not shown).
31. Italian Feast – turkey meatballs (recipe in Little Foodie) and pasta, chopped spinach + veggies salad, garlic bread and avocado chocolate pudding with peanut butter and coconut whipped cream.
32. Picnic at the Pool – asian lettuce wraps with chicken + mushrooms, lime + cilantro rice, chopped peppers, carrots, cucumbers, cilantro with a spicy dipping sauce (for the adults), cut watermelon and brownies.