It is summer and school is out! Kids are home and chances are they’re always hungry! Preparing summer lunches for kids doesn’t have to be an uphill task. There are some summer lunch ideas for kids that are easy to make. Most of these dishes use ingredients you already have in your pantry or fridge.
Wracking your brain for ideas on how to feed the kids? Here are some suggestions for tasty, healthy summer lunch ideas for kids:
1. Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich
This classic sandwich can be made with whole wheat bread, whole grain white bread or a good bread made with a mixture of grains such as oats or barley. These whole grain loaves contain lots of nutrients and fibre. Use good peanut butter or another kind of nut butter such as almond butter, cashew or even macadamia nut butter. Also, consider using low sugar jelly.
2. French Toast
This is made of sliced bread, usually white bread, but that can be substituted with whole grain bread or gluten free bread, soaked in eggs, milk, cinnamon, then fried on both sides. The result is a tasty dish, which can be served with freshly squeezed orange juice and or fruits.
3. Grilled Cheese with Tomato or Pepperoni
Take the simple grilled cheese sandwich up a notch by adding more fillings such as tomatoes, bacon or pepperoni. On whole wheat bread, this makes for a delicious healthy lunch for even the pickiest eater. Serve with fresh juice or milk.
4. Garlic Pasta with ham
Pasta makes for a quick and easy meal. Bow pasta is a favourite with kids. Boil the pasta until al dente, then drain. Sauté garlic in olive oil then add in the pasta. Throw in some ham or bacon. Best served with tomato sauce and vegetables such as broccoli and carrots.
5. Mac N’ Cheese
These summer lunch ideas for kids are another simple classic, and you will find them in the menu at lots of summer camps. The dish is loved by many, mac & cheese can be livened up with the addition of ham, bacon, turkey, chicken, peas, zucchini and carrots.
6. Tuna Salad
These summer lunch idea for kids serve up pretty well, and the tuna provides an excellent source of protein. Onions and relish bring in more flavour, and the addition of avocado turns the salad into a healthy filling meal. Spread some on a tortilla with some tomatoes, and you have yourself a healthy tuna salad wrap.
A frittata is a simple egg-based meal. It’s much like an omelette with more ingredients in it. Baby Spinach, bacon and ham can be added alongside thinly-sliced peeled potatoes and cheese. This would make a healthy filling lunch.
8. Scrambled Egg Sandwich with Cheese
For a more straightforward egg dish, just scramble a few eggs with garlic for flavour and spread on your favourite bread, then top with cheese and bread, and serve. Add lettuce and mayo if you wish, and you’ll have created a nice simple healthy meal.
These delicious wraps are especially great when it comes to camping. With a variety of fillings, you can whip up a range of burrito “flavours” such as beef burritos, eggs and avocado burrito, chicken salsa, black bean, turkey, sweet pork, squash and zucchini burritos.
10. Chicken Salad Sandwiches
This is perfect with leftover chicken or turkey if you prefer. You can also use cold rotisserie chicken or takeout leftover fried chicken. Mix the chicken or turkey with onion, garlic (fresh or powdered), paprika, celery, mustard, mayo, salt and pepper and stir until well combined. Serve on rolls or create a wrap using a tortilla. Cheese would be a great addition too.
11. Sloppy Joes
This delicious sandwich is made of ground beef or pork, cooked with onions, garlic, pepper tomato paste or ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and other seasonings. The cooked meat is then served on a burger bun. Use whole wheat buns for extra fibre.
Another dish to transform and go beyond the norm of a simple cheese filling. Fill the tortilla with beans, sliced mushrooms, olives, chicken, tomatoes, avocado or beef, and, of course, cheese, and you have a range of quesadilla options.
Tacos can be filled with fantastic healthy options like ground beef, pulled pork, grilled chicken breast and vegetables. You can add grated cheese to the fillings to make them even more delectable.
You can also use lentils and create tasty lentil taco or use fish and spices for a delicious Fish Taco. Make one with ground beef, lettuce and avocado and you have a simple and satisfying lunch.
14. Tortilla Pizzas
Quick and easy to make, tortilla pizzas are much healthier than takeout pizzas, and you can customize the topping to your liking. Even better, the kids can choose their own individual toppings. All you need is to place a tortilla on an oven-safe baking tray, spread your choice of sauce on it, perhaps your favourite barbecue sauce, olive oil and garlic, tomato sauce or pesto.
Go wild with the toppings, chicken and pineapple, pepperoni, ground beef, turkey, pork, ham; or keep it vegetarian with tomatoes, spinach or any other vegetable of your choice. Spread grated mozzarella or cheddar cheese on the toppings and then bake. Your tortilla pizza is ready. Bon Appétit!