Updated: Jun 15
Lunchtime ideas can be tricky for any parent - trying to balance a healthy food choice with what they will actually eat.
The Picky Eater
Picky eating is completely normal and natural for a young child and there is no 'quick-fix' so relax your expectations and know that it can take months (sometimes years!) to effectively nurture a healthy way of eating. But by putting the time in and being patient, you are actually creating healthy eating habits for life.
We recommend reading The Gentle Eating Book by Sarah Ockwell-Smith.
TIP: when you introduce your little one to new foods, give them two things you know they like and one new thing. And then keep giving it to them - it may take a hundred times of re-presenting challenging foods, so accept it will come with repeated refusal. Until the day they try it!
Stay calm and avoid putting pressure on them to eat anything.
Get them involved
Take your little on shopping with you, get them cooking at home and help them prepare their own lunch box. Show them where food comes from and how it is made, along with all of the variety of colours, flavours and textures (squishy, soft, rough, hard, sweet, hot, bland, sour etc)
Here are a few healthy choices you can put into their lunch box:
Raw Veggies - for texture
Cherry tomatoes cut in half
Sweet pepper strips
Fresh raw peas
Fruit - for sweetness
Grapes cut in half length ways
Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries
Pear or melon slices
Raising, sultanas or dried cranberries
Dairy & Meat - for protein
Hard boiled eggs, quartered
Cubes of cheese
Natural yogurt pot with, jam, fruit or honey
Ham or chicken strips
Sausage cut into coins
Minis crackers with cheese spread
Bread & Pasta - for fullness
Bread sticks and hummus
Mini sandwiches - ham, cheese, peanut butter, salmon
Wraps or pitta bread - chicken or ham and salad
Penne pasta tubes
Homemade granola bars
Drinks - for hydration
Avoid fruit juices, fizzy drinks and drinks for children
Stick to water, milk and sugar-free squash
Here is another great source of information for lunch box ideas -