Lunch Ideas for School and more!

Every morning School Lunch is the foremost thing on any Mom’s mind. We are all looking for something healthy, appealing, nutritious, easy to make in the morning and something that will survive a few hours in the lunch box. Here are some of the ideas and we had help, so thanks for everyone that pitched in. We are always looking for new ideas and would love to hear from you. Tell us what do you pack for your kids?

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45 thoughts on “Lunch Ideas for School and more!

  1. It will be great if you can add a lunch box recipes menu and show how to make some of these.That will be awesome and will inspire lot of people.seeing makes it really simple.

  2. Hi Hetal and Anuja,

    I’ve been a fan of yours for years now!

    Just a few tips that I wanted to share as we’re vegetarian and also have a younger child with a soy/egg/peanut allergy 🙁

    1) Frozen veggie “chicken” nuggets – i just place them in a glass container and my son’s teacher microwaves it for him – its already thawed by lunch time so doesn’t take too long in the microwave. i add a sweet and sour dip and he loves it. if your child does not have access to a microwave, you can heat it up in the morning as well.

    2) Maggi noodles with veggies – my son calls them “spicy noodles”. he just loves them. i add either half of the spice packet included or just haldi and a touch of red mirchi and salt.

    3) Mac and cheese with crumbled soy chunks (morning star, boca and even nutrela makes these) – you can even make these the night before.

    4) Plain old pasta with olive oil or pesto (i freeze pesto in ice cube trays, then leave one cube in the fridge the night before). I always add a veggie on the side like raw carrots to make up for my guilt of giving plain old pasta!

    5) PEA-butter or SUN-butter and jelly – since my younger son has a relatively strong peanut allergy (as opposed to a milder one to soy or eggs), i’ve tried not to keep peanuts in the house. so this helps a lot. i also add banana slices or honey instead of jelly.

  3. Use shredded cheese as a sticking agent for wraps/rolls. If you microwave the roll with them, then the shredded cheese acts as a glue and holds the veggies against the chapathi or tortilla. That way the veggies wont fall out. Also make sure you slice the chapathi into two after rolling it up. Since most of the veggies and cheese will be lodged in the middle, slicing it in half would make sure the veggies wont fall off from one end even though that end is open. If you just roll the chapathi into one big roll, there is chance that the lower half of the roll will let the veggies drop down.

  4. Boiled Corn on cob – Very simple.
    Throw in fresh whole sweet corn into boiling water. Let the water boil back for another 6 minutes. Remove and then rub with butter stick on the outside. Sprinkle some salt. Break a kebab stick in two(use a knife since bending causes the wood stick to split at the ends) and pierce the corn on its end as a holding stick. Use two sticks if the corn is heavy.

  5. Eggs can be molded into interesting shapes. For example – a heart or a star. Boil a extra large egg for 15 mins. Cool in running cold water (helps with removing shell). Peel egg and place it carefully into one of these japanese egg molds available in for less than $3-4 and free shipping.
    Place the mold and egg in the same cold water that you used to cool the egg. Throw in a few ice cubes to make it colder.
    Remove the top mold cover and slice the egg horizontally with the kitchen knife by keeping bottom mold cover in place. It helps to hold the egg while slicing.

  6. Hi anuja and hetal

    This is shubha; Recently I moved to cupertino California from Bangalore
    I was finding it difficult to cook with limited utensils and ingredients here, as I was used to variety of utensils and ingredients in India. Your website helped me with lots of tips and tricks which made my cooking more fun, as I love cooking variety of dishes to my family.
    You guys are fantastic, ur video and audio presentation are both very good…..I am sure all of ur recipes help a lot of people who come from India recently and working couples in particular, I tried so many of your recipes it really comes out very good and tasty

    You guys Rock! continue with lots of recipes, best of luck

  7. Hi,
    You both are awesome. Great tips and Recipes. You make my life easier.

    For Lunch ideas, I have a question.
    If I cook any cheese items(Pizza, mac and cheese,veg & cheese quesadilla, sandwiches with cheese) in the morning for afternoon lunch and put it in thermos, does the cheese get spoiled because it is outside for about 5 hours.

    What kind of cheese is good which remains fresh(not spoiled) even after few hours.

    1. Hi Swapna,

      Unless you are in a really hot climate where the schools have no air conditioning, any kind of cheese is okay until lunch time. It does not really spoil in that amount of time. If you use an insulated lunch bag, it also helps a lot.

  8. “Ants on a log” celery with peanut butter and raisins on top is a good snack for lunch.

    To keep lunch cool freeze a juice box the night before. By lunch time it will be a juice slushy and it will keep the lunch fresh.

    Great tips ladies!

  9. Hetal & Anuja,

    I just wanted to thank you so much for all the work you put into this website & cooking videos. I am fairly young & just started cooking on my own. I no longer live at home with my parents so its great to have you guys take me through these recipes step by step. You have some AWESOME and easy recipes! I have tried to make several of your recipes and they have always turned out great! Thank you so much.

    I just wanted to add to your lunch ideas. There is a really good way to jazz up the boring PB&J sandwhich. Instead of jelly, add bananas & a little bit of honey. Its a peanut butter & banana sandwhich, its very filling & the honey add a bit of sweetness. Also I marinate tofu in some red wine vinegar, apple cider, olive oil & add steak seasoning. Keep it refrigerated and add it to quesdillas, wraps, or salads. It’s great!

    Look forward to trying more of your great ideas & recipes!

    -Reshma =)

  10. hey just wanted to add one more lunch idea what i give at times…is an egg omlette rolled with chapathis..and some ketchup…my kid loves it.

  11. Here are some lunch ideas
    Mini uthappam, mini vella dosai (pour the batter with a spoon, just the right size for the kids to eat with a fork), bread uppma.
    I’ve found this website very useful and my 8 year old daughter can’t stop drooling while watching the videos.

  12. hi hetal,anuja,

    i love your show.its great!!!!!!but recently i am not able to play your practical tip and recipe demonstrations.that block is blocked!!!!!!!!!!kindly help me.

  13. Hi:

    I am not much of a cook at all and therefore constantly look at these websites for ideas.

    1. I was surprised to see that nobody posted chapati rolls. I heat up some chapati and apply some ghee and sugar and roll it up. Not only do my kids eat it but their friends love it too! If your kids eat vege’s (in my house it is a fight so I reserve this for dinner time), you can heat up and roll dry vege subzi’s from the night before.

    2. As for the pocket Pita and tortilla rolls, you can cut up your kids favorite fruits, mix in some fruit preserve and stuff it in.

    Hope you guys find this helpful!

  14. Tuna fish sandwiches-
    finely chop a small piece of onion, some cilantro and a small green chilli and mix it with one can of tuna fish and some mayo. Use this spread in your sandwich. My kids love this and the fishy tuna taste is well masked. Sometimes I add sliced black olives. You could add finely chopped celery and the pickled, jalapeno slices istead of green chillies.

    1. Hi ….
      I want to know ,,, after opening the can of tuna how long can u keep it in the refridgerator. i transfered it into another container….please reply….


  15. hi ladies,
    wonderful tips. i usually bought every week one min stir fry veggie packet. so saute them add in the egg scramble and put it in the tortilla wrap.

  16. Hi Anuja & Hetal,
    Your recipes are easy to follow and good.

    One more idea for quick lunch;
    Take cut onions, tomatoes & paneer, saute them after tempering with mustard seeds, add some sambhar / curry powder. Let it cook in little water. Add the steamed small idlis. Ready to pack

  17. Great lunch ideas….please help me with the idea in how to pack yogurt in kid’s lunch box so it will remain firm till lunch time….

    1. HI Nusrat..

      On how to pack yogurt for lunch.. take 3/4 cup plain yogurt… and mix in 1/4 cup warm milk into it and pack it in an air tight container.. by lunch time the yogurt would be firm and fresh..

    2. Hi Nusrat:

      If you buy gogurt, you can freeze them and send them along. By lunch time, they should be all thawed ready to eat. Not sure if the same would work for single serve size yogurt packs.


      1. Instead, send the gogurt with an ice pack in an insulated lunchbag. Freezing gogurt changes the texture of the yogurt. Also do not put back any gogurts back in the fridge for the next day if it was not eaten during the lunch. Any gogurt or yoplait should not be put back in fridge if it reaches room temps.

  18. Thanks Anuja and Hetal 🙂 The lunch ideas were good and helpful….now there are ways I can make my kids’ lunch box food more interesting. Great tips !!

  19. Ladies: I really love your website and I enjoy it very much. I want to let you know that I am deaf. I am able to read the recipes which you normally post and see how you cook. I was glad to read subtitles of each ingridents. Thank you. For Lunch tips on website, I am not able to get what you said. I’m hoping if you put ideas, comments and tips on the website. I would appreciate it very much. Thank you.

    PS No need to post on the website. This is for your information. 🙂

  20. Fruit Kababs – the ultimate lunch treat for my kids – skewer grapes, olives, cantaloupe, cheese (or extra firm tofu or paneer), orange slices, cut off the pointy end, and cut the skewer in half. Pop in ziploc bag. Bonus – can be made the night before.

  21. Hi Ladies,

    Great School Lunch tips. To add to some of your ideas – I make pasta with pesto, bean & cheese burrito, bread pakodas and my personal favorite is frozen samosas any kind which can be baked.

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