Pack your child’s lunch box with ease with these delicious, but quick and easy cold lunch recipes for kids of all ages.
Cold Lunch Recipes for Kids of All Ages
There’s something exciting about opening up a lunch box or bag and discovering what mom or dad made for cold lunch.
And, of course, you could pack the standard sandwich and obligatory carrot and piece of fruit or better still, why not jazz up your child’s cold lunch with one of these quick and easy cold lunch recipes that’s sure to please even the pickiest of eaters.
It really isn’t difficult to assemble deliciously healthy lunches. And, best of all, you’ll find that kids of all ages will love the time you put into making it meal to remember.
Check out these kid-friendly favorites:
1. Peanut Butter and Jelly Crescents
What’s not to love about Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches? But what if you could make a finger version that’s just as tasty but easy to tote in a lunch box? That’s the beauty of these Peanut Butter and Jelly Crescents.
3. Rainbow Tortellini Pasta Salad
What’s great about this Rainbow Tortellini Pasta Salad is that it is easily transportable. Worried that the salad will become soggy? Just pack the salad with the dressing on the side and keep it iced for freshness.
4. Greek Rotini Pasta Salad
This Greek Rotini Pasta Salad is great any time of the year but one of the easiest cold lunch recipes for kids. You can vary the cheese depending upon your child’s preference or use the standard choice of feta. Dress with oil and vinegar.
Cookbooks and Cold Lunch Recipes for Kids
I cannot think of anything more fun than finding ways to create more appealing cold lunches for my family. The following cookbooks offer a plethora of ideas and inspiration. I’m certain you’ll find something that even we big kids will love, too.
• Best Lunch Box Ever: Ideas and Recipes for School Lunches Kids Will Love – This cookbook offers a lot of easy how-to lunch box recipes right at your finger tips.
• Yum-Yum Bento Box: Fresh Recipes for Adorable Lunches – This cookbook offers a play on food that’s fun but deliciously healthy.
• Beat the Lunch Box Blues – No more ho hum lunches with these fresh recipes.
5. Hummus Dip
If you like the idea of packing lots of veggies with your child, there’s nothing better than Mixed Bean Hummus to let them dip to their heart’s content. Be sure to pack on ice to keep hummus cool.
6. Pepperoni Pizza Puffs
Kids love pizza. So why not make a batch of these easy cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Puffs that are simple to assemble and easily packed for cold lunches.
8. Mini Frittatas
These Mini Frittatas are a delicious choice for kid’s cold lunch when packed on ice.
9. Hunan Pork Wraps
What I love about these Hunan Pork Wraps is that they are easily packed for cold lunch. You can pack the ingredients separately alongside cold packs.
10. Poached Egg and Ham Breakfast Sandwich
Here’s another breakfast-for-lunch idea. this easy Poached Egg and Ham Breakfast Sandwich is just the ticket when you want something that is also kid-friendly. Toast the sandwich in the morning but be sure to pack between ice packs. I like to include fresh veggie sticks and slices on the side.
11. Cheesy Tomato Onion Tart
Tarts have been cold lunch favorites for years. But this Cheesy Tomato Onion Tart is a deliciously decadent version that can be packed easily. Just slice and place in a Bento Box or plastic container. Ice packs required.
12. Strawberry Watermelon Smoothie
Need a refreshing and cool lunch alternative? How about a filling Strawberry Watermelon Smoothie. You can add wheat germ or even chia if you’d like. Be sure to prep your thermos with ice cold water before filling.
13. Jam Filled Hand Pies
These Jam Filled Hand Pies can be made a million and one ways. Want a PB&J? Or, how about a ham and cheese pie? Absolutely. Be sure to follow the instructions and add your favorite ingredients.
14. Homemade Granola
Homemade Granola is one of my favorite snacks to take to lunch. But you can also make it a meal by adding some milk to it–much like the cereal version. It’s quick and easy to pack and wonderfully filling.
15. Egg Salad
This easy Egg Salad recipe is one of my favorite cold lunch recipes for kids that can be sent as a salad with lettuce and fresh veggies or as a sandwich with homemade bread. Either way it’s delish!
Tip: Always keep Egg Salad and other mayo-based salads on ice.
16. Caprese Salad
This Italian classic, Caprese Salad, doesn’t need refrigeration if you pack it for lunch. Add a drizzle of olive oil before you send it. And, don’t forget to send some crusty bread on the side.
17. Crepes with Bananas and Hazelnut Spread
With just a simple crepe recipe, you could send this sweet treat with your child. Wrap well and put on ice.
When you think of salsa, you might think that it’s only for parties. But not so. I love the idea of sending this super healthy dip in cold lunches. Include such “dippers” like fresh carrot and celery sticks, jicama, pepper strips, and even chicken nuggets. And, yes, of course, don’t forget homemade tortilla or pita chips, too.
More Inspired Cold Lunch Recipes for Kids
Need more inspiration for packing cold lunches for your child? Here are some additional recipes to try:
- Turkey Pesto Tortilla Pinwheels – Project Meal Plan
- Quinoa Salad with Zesty Lime Dressing – Kristine’s Kitchen
- Mason Jar Burrito Bowls – Gimme Delicious
- Caprese Salad Pita Pockets – BHG.com
- Bacon, Cheddar and Zucchini Bread – LoveFoodies
For more delicious ideas for lunch and brunch, be sure to check out Wisconsin Homemaker’s Recipe Section.