Who has ideas for protein sources for school lunches?

Nancy - posted on 09/22/2011 ( 23 moms have responded )

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With the no peanut policy (which I completely support), it is a little challenging to make balanced lunches. I'm always looking for healthy but yummy options.

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Tamara - posted on 09/22/2011

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-hard boiled eggs both my little ones love them,
-chilli/soup put it in thermoses,
-turkey meat balls with some spaghetti sauce (in the thermos) then a couple dinner rolls and a little baggy of cheese they make the sandwhiches there (they get to soggy of you make them before plus they are still warm when its lunch time)
-Grilled chicken wraps (when every I grill chicken I slice it then a soft taco tortilla size light mayo, lettuce or fresh spinach (depending on who its for) shredded cheese chicken, jullianed veggies roll it up and then wrap in saran wrap.
Sliced veggies with hummis dip


If you use a thermos fill it with hot water close the lid and let it sit for at least 10 minutes before filling it it 'wakes up' the things in there to keep things warm. I am sure there is a proper terminology for this but i don't know it.

Teresa - posted on 09/22/2011

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No peanut policy? I heat up chicken nuggets in the morning, put them in foil and send a small container of BBQ sauce and my son loves them. I also send a "go-gurt" and some kind of cheese, either a slice of american, or chunks of mild cheddar. My son loves PB so he usually has some on toast for breakfast, before he gets to school. My son has ADD so I try to make sure he get plenty of protein. I have sent baked beans or butter beans and rice and he loves those too.

Cathy - posted on 10/26/2011

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PROTEIN IN GRAINS: Barley, Brown rice, Buckwheat, Millet, Oatmeal, Rye, Wheat germ, Wheat, hard red, Wild rice

VEGETABLE PROTEIN: Artichokes, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Green peas, Green pepper, Kale, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Mustard green, Onions, Potatoes, Spinach, Tomatoes, Turnip greens, Watercress, Yams, Zucchini

PROTEIN IN FRUITS: Apple, Banana, Cantaloupe, Grape, Grapefruit, Honeydew melon, Orange, Papaya, Peach, Pear, Pineapple, Strawberry, Tangerine, Watermelon

PROTEIN IN NUTS AND SEEDS: Almonds, Cashews, Filberts, Hemp Seeds, Peanuts, Pumpkin seeds, Sesame seeds, Sunflower seeds, Walnuts (black)

Erin - posted on 10/04/2011

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My kids love the purdue short cuts- my daughter will just puts them in a container and eats those as the main part of her lunch. A few of their other favorites are hard boiled eggs, cheese sticks and leftovers in a thermos. I also send them the pediasure sidekicks.

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We use tofu dogs a lot (I just can't do the hot dog thing in good conscience with all those nitrates). They're pretty tasty. And cheese sticks. Also whole wheat pasta is a really good source of protein.

Julia - posted on 11/01/2011

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I saw hard boiled eggs in there somewhere and second that one. Also, roasted chickpeas are a nice, side snack that give a good crunch, protein and other yummies.

Donna - posted on 10/16/2011

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not sure but my daughter wont let me make her pbj sandwhiches because she sits next to the girls with the peanut allergy at lunch

Jill - posted on 10/15/2011

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i have a friend who's son is allergic to peanuts. she said they use a no-peanut peanut butter. try this site for ideas:

http://www.celiac.com/glutenfreemall/foo...

she says it isn't so bad. with someone with a peanut allergy, they would love it because it's better than never having a PB&J. They wouldnt know the difference anyway.

my kids like it when i cut out lunch meat and cheese slices with a cookie cutter and add crackers.

Sherri - posted on 10/01/2011

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I feel for you daughter Anna I love the way our school does it they have a nut free table they can sit at for snacks and lunch but they refuse to make the actual school nut free.

Anna - posted on 10/01/2011

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I feel terrible that no nuts is a pain for you bit next time you have a whinge have a little thought an say a little pray for my daughter who has 42 allergies all together 16 life threatening ones an imagine being in her world where she can't even eat nuts or eggs an the list goes on... Just a thought......

Nancy - posted on 09/30/2011

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Wow... thank you all for your help. it looks like I will be using the thermos a bit more. I like the idea of soy butter - I'll try it to see - my kids are pretty finicky. I will also try the hummus dip with pita. I am trying to stay away from the lunch meats as they are all full of nitrates but will try the natural hot dogs. I've been sending the kids to school with fruit & yogourt drinks for morning snacks - they seem to like that - another idea I found is salt reduced lipton chicken soup (stir in a beaten egg) - they like that as well. Thanks for all the ideas!

Adrienne - posted on 09/26/2011

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There is soynut butter (really tasty), hummus and veggies, black beans and cheese in a wrap/burrito, leftovers, hard boiled eggs...really a lot of different choices. It all depends on how picky an eater your little one is. Luckily, my youngest's preschool allows PB.

Tammy - posted on 09/24/2011

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My daughter's school also has a no nut policy, which kinda shocked me when I found out. I never realized that so many people are allergic to nuts! They also have a kosher policy, which means no dairy and meat in the same lunch, making it even more challenging.

I give something different every day. I always give some kind of cut up fruit, she can eat with a fork, such as apples, strawberries, or bananas. The main meal is usually a sandwich (I use different bread each day), with some kind of spread or dressing and avocado, cheese or chopped chicken. She also gets a yogurt cup, a cheese stick, or animal crackers. I sometimes as a special treat will put in a store bought lunch item, such as a corndog or meatballs, for example.

Denikka - posted on 09/24/2011

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Left overs are WONDEFUL!
I hate a lot of *lunch meats*. Don't like the taste and they're so full of crap XP

I used to get chicken nuggets most days for lunch (I was kinda picky XD eggs every morning, chicken nuggets and tater tots for all my school lunches :P)
You can cut steak or BBQ chicken into strips, slice roast chicken thinly and make a sandwich, do something like a BLT. There are a ton of things out there.
You could also try meat alternatives, such as the *other*nut butter that some people suggested, tofu, beans...something like chili could be good :)
Get creative :)

Sherri - posted on 09/24/2011

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Sunbutter it is in the organic section made 100% from sunflower seeds and in a tree nut facility. It tastes as close as you can get to peanut butter without it being peanut butter. So she can still have her sunbutter and jelly sandwiches etc.

Heidi - posted on 09/24/2011

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I make sandwiches from leftover meatloaf or baked chicken. My boys love both. Also lots of cottage cheese, string cheese and yogurt.

Lori - posted on 09/23/2011

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cold chicken drumsticks, salmon sandwiches with homemade mayo, cheese and eggs,try sunflower seeds shelled with dates and coconut mushed together to make snack balls...just roll them and freeze them...yummmy!

Elizabeth - posted on 09/23/2011

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Hummus w/crackers and veggies, almond butter /jelly roll ups on whole grain flat bread, yogurt and berries with a bannana. I've used Bento boxes and put little bits of things in each section. :)

[deleted account]

I do leftover meat from dinners (with BBQ sauce or ketchup to dip), 3 cheese tortolleni (with ketchup since he hates pasta sauce), and the naturals (nitrate-free) hot dogs for a treat.

Alison - posted on 09/23/2011

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I agree, the no nuts thing is a real pain. I have been giving my daughter lunch meats, but I would like to cut back. I do cream wraps (sometimes I add pesto). Have you ever tried tofu with your kids?

Amy - posted on 09/23/2011

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Most schools have a peanut-free zone, but I have never heard of an entire lunchroom being peanut free. Are all nuts banned? You could maybe do almond butter if not.

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