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Sack Lunch Ideas

Updated on August 11, 2015

Shaking Up the Average Sack Lunch

There are roughly 180 days in the U.S. school year and for some of us that is AT LEAST the number of lunches that will be made throughout the year. If you have more than one child in school now multiply the days by the number of children you have attending and you've got your work cut out for you! With so many lunches throughout the year it can be difficult to come up with new ideas, so your kids aren't eating the same thing for lunch every day. Here are some inventive ways and new items that may help make the average sack lunch exciting!

Number of Lunches a Day

How many sack lunches do you have to make each day?

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sack lunch and containers: photos taken by Rymom28
sack lunch and containers: photos taken by Rymom28

From the Outside In and Inside Out

A little color on the outside, functional food containers on the inside....what you decide to put outside and inside your child's lunch can make a world of difference. It is good to get lunch storage items that are easy to use, but also make their lunch personalized. Ultimately, you want your child to love their lunch from the inside out.

* Personalize *

I like to write messages on the sack lunches, it was something my mom did for us as kids and it always used to make me feel special. You can also try a different colored sack every now and then rather than just the plain brown bag or try using chalk to leave a special message in a lunch bag.

* Lunch Food Containers *

There are so many great lunch food containers out there now a days that it is hard to choose just one, so it is my recommendation to get a variety of them. Keep in mind that the more functional they are, the better they will work for your child's lunch. I like to use small containers or ones with a few compartments and an easy to use lid that will also be leek proof.

* Sandwich Bags *

These have even started being personalized with different designs and they look so great I just had to include them! My personal favorite are the disguise sandwich bags. For those that prefer reusable bags, those are available as well. However, I tend to rely on Ziplock because I also like to write a message on those from time to time. Either way, these are great ways to make your child's lunch a little more fun.

Photo credit:
Photo credit:

Ways to Make a "Wow!" Sandwich

Most of us make sandwiches because they are quick to make and you can buy mass quantities of items to put them together. However, there is point in the year where that can become mundane for a kid. Here are some ways to make your take a normal sandwich and turn into something they will never forget and probably want to have again!

* Change of Bread *

To give your kids more options and new flavors the most simple change that you can make to a sandwich is trying a new bread such as pumpernickel, sesame seed bun, bagels, pita, tortilla, etc. That one food alteration can make a sandwich taste completely different!

* A New Look *

Shape and size can make a difference in making something look more appetizing, especially for young kids. Try cutting the sandwich into new shapes like moons or triangles. Online you can also find a variety of sandwich or cookie cutters. If you have an older kid who has a big appetite try making them a double stacked sandwich instead.

* Different Toppings *

Try new condiments, such us honey mustard, bbq, ranch, blue cheese, garlic mayonnaise, blackberry jam. The sky is the limit, just ask your kids what they would like to try, you may be surprised. This can make the same old thing turn into something completely different with just one simple change.

* Dessert Sandwich *

Another option is to save the sandwich for their lunch sweet treat, rather than make it the main part of their lunch. Banana and peanut butter, fluffernutter (marshmallow fluff with peanut butter), Nutella on toast, a banana in a hot dog bun with chocolate drizzled over it. I wouldn't recommend these on a daily basis, but it is a fun surprise and neat way to change things up every once and a while.

Complete Sandwich Overhaul

If you feel that there needs to be a radical change, here is a new recipe to try.

Recipe found at:

  • Prep time: 20 min
  • Ready in: 20 min
  • Yields: 8


  • 1/3 cup apricot jam
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup plain whipped cream cheese or honey-nut soft cream cheese (from 8-ounce tub)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dried apricots
  • 16 slices cinnamon raisin bread
  • 8 slices whole wheat bread
  • 1 pound thinly sliced smoked turkey or fully cooked ham


  1. 1. Mix apricot jam and mustard. Mix cream cheese and apricots.
  2. 2. Spread jam mixture on one side of 8 slices cinnamon bread and 8 slices wheat bread. Place turkey on cinnamon bread; add wheat bread with spread sides down.
  3. 3. Spread cream cheese mixture on remaining 8 slices cinnamon bread. Place cinnamon bread, cream cheese sides down, on sandwich stacks. Cut each sandwich diagonally into fourths to make 4 triangular sandwiches.
Cast your vote for * Trying Something Completely New *
Photo credit:
Photo credit:

Healthy Snacks That Kids Love

As parents we often worry that our kids are not getting enough healthy options. Many of us make sure to add some healthy foods to their lunch, but it seems most times those nutritious foods often go uneaten. There are some great products out there to help resolve this issue, which make good foods more enjoyable to eat.

* Good Enough To Eat *

Children like to eat things that are visually appealing to them. The funner it looks, the more likely they are to eat it. If you haven't already tried it you can make "ants marching" - peanut butter inside celery sticks with raising on top of the peanut butter or cut "teeth marks" into an apple and leave a note from the lunch fairy that took a bite out of it. Get creative!

Make your own lunch bag; pattern and tutorial!!!
Make your own lunch bag; pattern and tutorial!!! | Source

Final Results - Something Amazing!

Now you have all the tools to add some variety and fun to the average lunch. Hopefully these lunch ideas can help your kids eat better while enjoying their lunch and also feeling that it was made special. Good luck to you and all your lunch making ahead!

Sack Lunch Song - ~ Recess Monkeys ~

Enjoy this hilarious song about sack lunch - great tune for kids and super catchy!


I'm a little sack lunch short and stout

Your dad put me together, you take me out

On an adventure so very far away from school

I'm stuffed with a sandwich, chips and fruit

I wear a funky crumply light brown suit

I've got a juice box and a fudge brownie

And a smiley face written up in sharpie


At school you put me in a bin, bunches of lunches pile on in

I'm kind of squished, is somebody leaking in here?

I hear the kids play I spy, they sing a song

They get truck drivers to honk along

Where are we going, does anyone have a clue?

Gotta find my way, My way back to you

You're in the museum now and I'm stuck by the front desk

But I'll be here waiting when your adventure is through

I'll find my way back to you

What were your favorite sack lunch ideas from this article? Are there certain items that your child loves in their lunch?

Your Favorite Ideas

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    • Rymom28 profile image

      Rymom28 3 years ago

      Great idea @Carashops!

    • Carashops profile image

      Cara 5 years ago

      I always put a mini ice block into the lunch sack. Our classroom can get very warm during the day.

    • Rymom28 profile image

      Rymom28 5 years ago

      @Elsie Hagley: Thank you for blessing my lens! I really hope this lens helps parents that make sack lunches, as it can be tough task to complete every day. I appreciate you sharing your story!

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 5 years ago from New Zealand

      Great lens. When my 5 children were going to school, many years ago, it was very stressful trying to get lunches sorted every night as I was a working mum and used to leave 6.30 in the morning for work, lunches would be done at night and put in the fridge. We are farmers, my husband would be in from the milking shed before the school bus came at 8.00 am.

      Yes lunches used to be the hardest to get sorted out, I needed your lens then.

      Thanks for sharing your ideas, hope it helps some other mums. Blessed.

    • MJsConsignments profile image

      Michelle 5 years ago from Central Ohio, USA

      Great lens. I'm going to use some of these ideas for my work lunches.

    • Rymom28 profile image

      Rymom28 5 years ago

      @designsbyharriet: Thank you for your blessing!

    • designsbyharriet profile image

      Harriet 5 years ago from Indiana

      These are terrific ideas for sack lunches. Blessings for helping kids get better lunches.

    • Rymom28 profile image

      Rymom28 5 years ago

      @ItayaLightbourne: Thank you!

    • ItayaLightbourne profile image

      Itaya Lightbourne 5 years ago from Topeka, KS

      Great sack lunch ideas for school!