School Lunch Ideas For Busy Moms

pinable lunch

One of the most asked questions I receive is what do you pack in school lunches and how to you not get burnt out throughout the year packing lunches.  It’s funny because it is an area in motherhood that I think we all struggle with.  Lunch packing and the ultimate “What’s For Dinner” question!  Today I am sharing 5 tips to help you push through the lunch packing struggle, and I also made a printable which you can find below of 50+ items that make there way into my kids lunches!

Tips For Lunch Packing Success

1.) Let Them Buy — I know we are talking about packing lunch, but if it is an option for your family, let your kiddos buy occasionally.  Doing this adds variety into their lunch meals throughout the school year, and give you a break every now and then.  We sit down and look at the school lunch calendar together to see what days they want to buy.  That allows me to plan ahead of time.

2.) Print An Idea List — I have included the list that I made for the school year, and hope you find it helpful.  I also have an old calendar printable as well that you can take it a step further and plan out lunches in advance.

Lunch Ideas
Monthly Blank Calendar

3.) Keep All Your Supplies In One Place — We have a cabinet in our kitchen that houses all the kids stuff.  That includes plates, bowls, and cups that are kid friendly.  All our lunch packing essentials go in there as well.  It makes lunch making time more efficient with everything all together in one spot.


4.) Use A Thermos For Hot Foods — I used have all the gadgets for lunch packing, the fancy bins, cupcake liners (which I do still occasionally use) toothpicks, yogurt holders… all of it.  I ditched the stuff that was just stressing me out, see I was trying to pack the perfect lunches to be that Pinterest mom…. when in actuality my kids just want food. One item I have kept is a Thermos for hot foods.  This works great for leftovers from dinner the night before, or even kid favorites like hotdogs or chicken nuggets.

5.) A School Lunch Grocery List — Ever make it to Sunday night prep time and realize you have no food in the house to make school lunches for the week?  I have been there more than once.  So I created the worlds smallest grocery list of essentials to make it through a week of lunch packing.  There may not be a ton of variety, but this list of under 10 items will make it through those busy hectic weeks!


School Lunch Essentials

Below I have included some of our Essential items for lunch packing.

lunch essentials
To see a few additional tips, watch the video BELOW!

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