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5 Hacks for Fun & Easy School Lunches

We’ve partnered with Beau Coffron, a creative talent who shares his adorable and healthy school lunch creations along with parenting tips on his blog, Lunchbox Dad.

Back to school is here, and few things strike more terror into the hearts of parents than having to make school lunches every day. But this doesn’t have to be a boring task — it can be an enjoyable experience for the whole family. Just follow some of my lunch hacks below to make your life easier and give your kids some of the coolest lunches in the cafeteria.

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1. Use Cookie Cutters to Make Fun Shaped Sandwiches

If you have two extra minutes you can make a sandwich shaped like a dinosaur, heart, airplane or football. Just break out your favorite cookie cutter, place one on top your child’s sandwich, and press down until it cuts all the way through. You won’t believe how easy it is to turn boring PB&J into an exciting creation!

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2. Buy a High-Quality Reusable “Bento” Style Lunchbox

Don’t necessarily buy the cheapest lunchboxes or bags available because many times you will need to replace those halfway through the year. A great plastic or stainless steel bento box will sometimes last for a few school years and can be inexpensive. You will also save money on disposable bags if you buy a box with built-in compartments. Plus, compartments make it easy to see what fun and healthy items the lunch still needs.

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3. Cut Fruits & Veggies at the Beginning of the Week

If you’re a parent, life gets crazier as the week goes on. On Sunday, cut up your fruits and vegetables and place them in larger containers, so that they can conveniently be thrown into lunches throughout the week. Carrots, celery, strawberries, melons and grapes can all be prepped and stored a few days ahead of time.

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4. Use Kabob Sticks to Mix Things Up

Everything is more fun on a stick! Layer fresh fruits and vegetables, last night’s raviolis, or even sandwich ingredients on a kabob stick. Changing up the presentation can turn the same old food into something cool.

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5. Write Lunch Notes for Kids of All Ages

Whether your kids are second-graders or high school seniors, they will love a handwritten note from you. Use a simple sticky note or find stationery with their favorite movie characters on it. You can even laminate a notecard and write your message with a dry erase marker so that it can be reused. The possibilities are endless!

As you can see, with just a few extra minutes, your kids’ lunches can go from flops to fantastic. Who knows? If you put these tips into action you might actually get excited to make school lunches this year!

Want the recipes for some of Beau’s favorite lunchboxes? Visit our Back to School! pinboard, where we’ve also gathered tips for healthy snacks, make-ahead breakfasts and handling the first day of school.


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Dining and Kitchen
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Beau Coffron

Meet the Contributor

Blog: Lunchbox Dad

My home Tuesday Morning location: Union City, CA

My favorite Tuesday Morning department: Kitchen Supplies

A little about me: I’m a husband, dad, and writer in the San Francisco bay area. I love hanging out with my family, watching movies, and am slightly addicted to coffee and social media.

What I love to write about: I write about ways to make school lunches fun and also ways to make parents’ lives easier. Sometimes my articles are funny, sometimes they are serious, but hopefully they are always entertaining! I can be found on all my social media channels @lunchboxdad.

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  1. Reply Sharon

    Great ideas for kids lunches. I will use these for my grandson. Love Tuesday Morning.

  2. Reply linda

    I shop at the Tampa store on North Dale Mabry and sometimes at the Bruce B Downs store. I keep going back looking for 300, 350, and 500 piece puzzles. Is there any specific time of month that puzzles would be coming into the store?

    I really enjoy the stores and the variety of merchandise.

    • Reply Kylie Paul

      Hi Linda,

      Unfortunately, there is no specific time of the month that we receive puzzles and games. Best of luck!

  3. Reply Ming@bentomonsters

    Love the great tips, lunchbox dad is awesome!

  4. Reply Jackie

    Everything tastes better on a stick!! Love using cookie and sandwich cutters – great list!

  5. Reply Brenda Muth

    I love Beau!! He was in my daughter’s graduating class of 1996 at Paradise Adventist Academy. It was so fun to stumble onto his blog and see what he has been up to. He is a wonderful man and his kids are SO lucky!! What a treat to open your email and see him featured on your page! I love Tuesday Morning and try to get there at least once a month.

  6. Reply Chris Hicks

    Re: #4 Sending a child to school with sticks in their lunch is not a good idea.

  7. Reply Inez Abrams

    I enjoy going to Tuesday Morning and checking the merchandise on hand and shopping for items I like.

    • Tuesday Morning
      Reply Tuesday Morning

      We’re so glad to hear that! Thanks for sharing your love for Tuesday Morning!