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Lunch Box Ideas + Back to School Giveaway

Need some tips for packing your kids’ school lunch this year? These healthy lunch ideas will keep the whole family happy all year!

Healthy Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchbox

My kids headed back to school this week.

It’s always a bitter-sweet moment when our summer fun is officially over.

All you parents of school-aged children know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s an emotional roller coaster. One minute I’m ready to punt them out the door, because they’re stir-crazy and getting on each other’s nerves. The next minute I’m weepy-eyed over my sweet little bundles all grown up and moving up the elementary ladder.

I get several (quiet) hours of my life back each day, yet I miss their funny stories, giggles and constant hugs. Sob…

Parenting is for the birds. Just kidding.

Healthy Lunch Ideas + Lunch Box Giveaway | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchboxFront: Girls NY Blue Mosaic Flower and Boys NY Olive Skeleton Army Lunch tote Sets

While my two cuties are enthusiastically laying out their new shoes and backpacks, I’m pondering healthy lunch ideas for school this year. Making sure their school lunch is something healthy and inviting can be a little difficult.

After all, I certainly get tired of eating the same thing over and over again, so I can’t blame them for not wanting PB&J and ham and cheese 5 days a week.

School Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchboxBuilt Adult Lush Flower Gourmet Getaway Lunch Tote Set

So I’ve compiled a list of some fun and healthy lunch ideas for back to school.

And we’ve got a really fun giveaway to boot!

Healthy School Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchbox

Healthy Lunch Ideas

Kid-Made Lunch Ideas:

Try letting your kids make their own lunches. It’s fun for them and teaches responsibility.

Pack Bento Boxes – to encourage healthy choices and portion control

Healthy Lunch Ideas - #Bento | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchbox

Use Cookie Cutters – to cut sandwiches and fruit into fun shapes

Use Veggies to Make Colorful Creations

Come Up with Unique Flavor Combinations – that they’ll love because they thought of it themselves

Make-Your-Own Lunchables using healthy crackers and good quality cheese

Simple Healthy Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchboxLove these colorful dishes from Villeroy & Boch.

My Favorite PB&J Alternatives:

Meat Cheese and Veggie Roll-Ups

Pickle Roll-Ups with Lunch Meat and Fresh Basil Leaves

Crispy Chicken Tender Pops

Lettuce Wraps

Repurpose leftovers into something new (Like leftover steak into steak sandwiches or quick beef stir fry)

Back-to-School Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchbox

Easy Make Aheads:

These are things you can make in one batch and pack in a lunch box several times throughout the week.

Chili

Soup

Pastas and Pasta Salads

Chicken Salad (or Egg Salad or Tuna Salad)

Loaded Rice Dishes

Homemade Pizza

Pulled Pork

Pasta - Healthy Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchbox

Easy Sides and Snacks:

Fruit Kebabs

Homemade Snack Mixes

Kale Chips

Roasted Chickpeas

Veggies and Dip

Crackers with Goat Cheese and Berries (Instead of processed cheese spreads)

Homemade seasoned popcorn

Buffalo Chicken Bites

Antipasto Skewers

Crispy Roasted Cauliflower

Creamy Avocado Salsa and Chips

Easy Healthy Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchbox

Freezer Favorites:

Items you can place in the freezer to keep your lunch cold while they thaw.

Yogurt Tubes

Mini Yogurt Smoothies

Individually Sized Guacamole Packets

Juice Boxes

Muffins

Pudding Cups

Mini Quiches

Freezer Favorites - Healthy Lunch Ideas | ASpicyPerspective.com #backtoschool #lunch #schoollunch #lunchboxBuilt NY Big Apples Buddies Astro Owl Lunch Tote Set

I hope these healthy lunch ideas give you a head start this year on your quest for an intriguing (and manageable) school lunch schedule.

Did you notice the super-cute Built Lunch Tote Sets throughout the post?

You could win one today for your child (or yourself!)

These lunch bags are durable, well insulated, and each lunch tote comes with a matching reusable sandwich and snack bag, so you can be earth-friendly and stylish! Today’s Giveaway is generously donated by BigKitchen.com, a great place to shop for all things cooking.

Built Lunch Tote Sets

To enter simply follow the prompts in this automated entry form. For US residents only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: BigKitchen.com provided the lunch totes for today’s post and giveaway. All opinions are my own.

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128 Responses to “Lunch Box Ideas + Back to School Giveaway”

  1. Jersey Girl Cooksposted August 23, 2013 at 5:45 am

    Cute lunch boxes and I love all the lunch box ideas. We have one week left of summer vacation.

    Reply

  2. Jersey Girl Cooksposted August 23, 2013 at 5:48 am

    I like the owl lunch box. Thanks for the chance!

    Reply

  3. Christine Lombardoposted August 23, 2013 at 5:49 am

    Love these cute lunch boxes. So cute and colorful. I especially love the sandwich sack. <3

    Reply

  4. Belinda @zomppaposted August 23, 2013 at 5:50 am

    Will you adopt me?

    Reply

  5. Jeanetteposted August 23, 2013 at 6:11 am

    Fun ideas Sommer – hope you had a nice summer. Back to school is bittersweet – totally agree.

    Reply

  6. marlaposted August 23, 2013 at 6:19 am

    WOW so many great lunch ideas Sommer :)

    Reply

  7. Janelposted August 23, 2013 at 6:30 am

    Love the big boy skull lunch box

    Reply

  8. Hollyposted August 23, 2013 at 6:35 am

    Lots of great ideas! I would love to get the Adult floral. I take my lunch everyday and that would make me happy! :)

    Reply

  9. elizabeth @ chronic ventureposted August 23, 2013 at 6:51 am

    always need good ideas for lunch–even for the grownups! love the floral lunchbox

    Reply

  10. Gerry @ foodness graciousposted August 23, 2013 at 6:52 am

    Yes!!! I can agree on all levels. Right now some days I just want to drop them off at school even though it’s still closed lol…but I know when they go in a few weeks it’ll be sad. Great giveaway and thanks!

    Reply

  11. Marian (Sweetopia)posted August 23, 2013 at 6:53 am

    Such great lunch ideas and totes! I especially love the owl!. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

    Reply

  12. Lesley Groetschposted August 23, 2013 at 7:15 am

    Hoping to win the adult flower tote. We have one built lunch tote already, but daughter #2 could use one as well. Thanks for the great lunch ideas – I’m going shopping tomorrow to pick up some of the ingredients!

    Reply

  13. Emily Kposted August 23, 2013 at 7:25 am

    The adult floral. They are all so cute. Great ideas for lunches. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

  14. Kristinaposted August 23, 2013 at 7:26 am

    Love the lunchmeat-wrapped pickle idea! All these sound yummy!

    Reply

  15. Cindyposted August 23, 2013 at 7:28 am

    Love your ideas and the fonts I am typing with :) Thanks for encouraging moms to help their kids make healthy choices … they will last a lifetime! <3

    Reply

  16. Tracyposted August 23, 2013 at 7:30 am

    Great ideas! I love them all, but since i don’t have kids, I’ll go with the adult floral lunch sack.

    Reply

  17. Laura rahnposted August 23, 2013 at 7:49 am

    Love the little girl owl

    Reply

  18. Russell at Chasing Deliciousposted August 23, 2013 at 8:13 am

    I think what I’ve learned most from this post is that lunch boxes are a million times more fancy now than when I was a kid.

    Reply

  19. Virginiaposted August 23, 2013 at 8:43 am

    These are so great! I have 5 kids so this set is the perfect size for our family.

    Reply

  20. Katieposted August 23, 2013 at 8:44 am

    Love the big kid girl! And great inspiration for lunches, thanks!!

    Reply

  21. Tracieposted August 23, 2013 at 8:48 am

    Love the pickle roll up idea!

    Reply

  22. LeslieBeeposted August 23, 2013 at 9:39 am

    I don’t even have kids of school age anymore, but I love your lunch ideas and will be using them to make my own lunches, more tasty, fun and healthy. It would be a treat to carry it to work in the Adult Floral Tote

    Reply

  23. vaishaliposted August 23, 2013 at 9:43 am

    Love the big kid girl!

    Reply

  24. Nikkiposted August 23, 2013 at 9:46 am

    I like the adult floral

    Reply

  25. Laura (Tutti Dolci)posted August 23, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Such fun ideas, I want those fruit kebabs for my snack! ;)

    Reply

  26. Barbposted August 23, 2013 at 9:50 am

    I like the adult floral

    Reply

  27. Maria Malaveciposted August 23, 2013 at 9:53 am

    I like the Big Kid Boy and Girl.

    mmalavec(at)med(dot)umich(dot)edu

    Reply

  28. Khanhposted August 23, 2013 at 9:55 am

    The Little Kid Owl tote is adorable!!! Thanks for the chance!

    Reply

  29. Claireposted August 23, 2013 at 10:04 am

    Love these bags with the matching little bags for snacks inside.

    Reply

  30. Maggieposted August 23, 2013 at 10:13 am

    So cute! I love the owl one.

    Reply

  31. Kristinposted August 23, 2013 at 10:16 am

    Love the flower tote and the square bento boxes! Which brand are the square ones?

    Reply

  32. Kathyposted August 23, 2013 at 10:26 am

    As a teacher who has to bring her own lunch to work, I’d love one of those sets!!

    Reply

  33. Samanthaposted August 23, 2013 at 10:28 am

    I love the big kid girl set. I’m always looking for new lunch ideas- this post is great!

    Reply

  34. Elissaposted August 23, 2013 at 11:47 am

    I like the little owl lunch box!

    Reply

  35. Jessica @Bkeepsushonestposted August 23, 2013 at 11:53 am

    Little Kid Dog

    Reply

  36. toniposted August 23, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    green skulls

    Reply

  37. Yukiposted August 23, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    They look adorable! Thanks for the giveaway.

    Reply

  38. Leslieposted August 23, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    I love the owl one! Very cute and good lunch ideas for adults as well :)

    Reply

  39. Shelly Potterposted August 23, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    NY Big Apples Buddies Astro Owl

    Reply

  40. beth jilletteposted August 23, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Love the adult flower!

    Reply

  41. Trishaposted August 23, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    the adult floral – what great ideas for lunch (kids or adults!)

    Reply

  42. stacey m.posted August 23, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    So cute! Love the owl and the doggie!

    Reply

  43. Candiceposted August 23, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    I would love the adult floral.

    I do have a question regarding the pasta salads, won’t it spoil since schools don’t have refrigerators where kids can put their lunch? Great lunch ideas! I could use some of these myself. =)

    Thanks for the giveaway.

    Reply

  44. Angelposted August 23, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    They are all so adorable, I love the floral and the owl

    Reply

  45. Sarahposted August 23, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    Would love to win the adult flower bag.

    Reply

  46. Jenniferposted August 23, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    They’re all great, but the floral ones are my faves. Love the lunch ideas… and that square bento box rocks!

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    Reply

  47. Mariaposted August 23, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    This post makes me want to go back to school:)

    Reply

  48. Jeffreyposted August 23, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    I’d have to go with the Big Kid Boy with the Skulls!

    Reply

  49. Flora Carswellposted August 23, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    These are so creative. Thanks for all the great ideas!

    Reply

  50. CarolynHposted August 23, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    I’d prefer the adult floral.

    Reply

  51. Shellyposted August 23, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    I love the Adult Floral one!

    Reply

  52. Virginia Rapaviposted August 23, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    the adult flower is so cute. but i have to admit the owl would be cool too

    Reply

  53. Jenneposted August 23, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    Little kid owl!

    Reply

  54. Jeannaposted August 23, 2013 at 2:27 pm

    I like the Big Kid Boy (Green Skulls)!

    Reply

  55. Chrisposted August 23, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    Although the Adult Floral is …for adults… and I love it, in second and third come Girls Floral and I would also consider the cute Little Kid Owl. What a great idea, and so wonderful to encourage healthy lunches!!

    Reply

  56. Melissaposted August 23, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    My son would love the Liitle Kid Dog!!

    Reply

  57. ashleyposted August 23, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    the dog is cute

    Reply

  58. Carole Resnickposted August 23, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    adult floral, please.

    Reply

  59. Kelly Dposted August 23, 2013 at 5:17 pm

    I like the Big Kid Girl style.

    Reply

  60. Ninaposted August 23, 2013 at 6:33 pm

    The adult floral would be wonderful. Would be so stylish during lunch hour.

    Reply

  61. Stephanie Oposted August 23, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    I love the adult foral and the kids dog.

    Reply

  62. heatherposted August 23, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    the adult foral

    Reply

  63. Susanposted August 23, 2013 at 8:44 pm

    I like the adult floral.

    Reply

  64. Roxanne @The ROXX Boxposted August 23, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    I would love the owl. Too cute and what a great GIVEAWAY!!

    Reply

  65. barbara nposted August 23, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    I would love to win the adult floral

    Reply

  66. Candyposted August 23, 2013 at 9:45 pm

    It’s a toss up between the little owl & dog ones. My boys would love either! So cute!

    Reply

  67. Melissa @ My Recent Favorite booksposted August 23, 2013 at 9:58 pm

    I love the Adult Floral one!

    Reply

  68. Hannahposted August 23, 2013 at 10:08 pm

    Little boy dog.

    Reply

  69. Gabyposted August 23, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    Brilliant ideas! :)

    Reply

  70. Brandy Raganposted August 23, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    The adult floral would be perfect! I’m going back to finish mt degree and I will need to pack lunch 4 days a week.

    Reply

  71. Heather Bposted August 24, 2013 at 1:24 am

    I love the little dog one.

    Reply

  72. Meridithposted August 24, 2013 at 2:50 am

    Cute bags! Great ideas. Adult floral is a perfect partner to my girl’s navy chevron backpack.

    Reply

  73. Elbaposted August 24, 2013 at 3:40 am

    Love the Adult Floral!

    Reply

  74. Gail Annacartoposted August 24, 2013 at 4:11 am

    Adult floral so cute

    Reply

  75. gina @ skinnytasteposted August 24, 2013 at 5:09 am

    These are great, my toddler will have to bring lunch for the first time to Pre-K next month, and since she doesn’t east sandwiches I may buy a bento box. Cute ideas!

    Reply

  76. Ann Bestposted August 24, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Definitely Adult Floral!

    Reply

  77. Jan Rposted August 24, 2013 at 9:06 am

    Love the adult floral…PLEASE!

    Reply

  78. Angelposted August 24, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    My son would love the skulls!

    Reply

  79. Barbara McCraryposted August 24, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    Adult floral please!

    Reply

  80. nicole lillieposted August 24, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    I like the big boy kid, or adult floral.

    Reply

  81. Erin Elizabethposted August 24, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Love these lunch ideas. Great post! I love them all, but my son loves the puppy dog one.

    Reply

  82. Miss @ Miss in the Kitchenposted August 24, 2013 at 8:53 pm

    Great lunch ideas! My boys love taking their lunch and I will sure be using some of these ideas!

    Reply

  83. Meshel Lewinskiposted August 24, 2013 at 11:33 pm

    I love the green skulls!

    Reply

  84. jeannine sposted August 25, 2013 at 7:03 am

    I love the little kids owl bag

    Reply

  85. Roseposted August 25, 2013 at 7:28 am

    My little boy starts 6th grade tomorrow and. I am sure he woild liker the big kid green skulls lunch bag. Love your blog ang great food ideas.

    Reply

  86. Michelleposted August 25, 2013 at 7:36 am

    The big kid floral!

    Reply

  87. Ash-foodfashionpartyposted August 25, 2013 at 7:56 am

    Those lunch cases are beautiful and the pasta is something my boys would love. I completely hear ya, my boys start to school tomorrow and I will try not to get too emotional the first day.

    Reply

  88. Kathy - Panini Happyposted August 25, 2013 at 8:51 am

    Love the adult floral!

    Reply

  89. Joanne BHposted August 25, 2013 at 9:30 am

    All of the bags are great! The owl and puppy are especially cute! Your lunch ideas are also great. I too prefer to pack lunches that are outta of the sandwich bag!

    Reply

  90. La Cuisine d'Heleneposted August 25, 2013 at 10:28 am

    This is such a great giveaway, I love all the bags. I prefer the Adult Floral :)

    Reply

  91. Natashaposted August 25, 2013 at 12:02 pm

    I love little kid dog!

    Reply

  92. Randiposted August 25, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    Love it, little kid dog bag

    Reply

  93. taniaposted August 25, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    big kid boy!

    Reply

  94. Teresa C.posted August 25, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    so cute!

    Reply

  95. audreyleeposted August 25, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    Love the big kid girl lunch bag! I also love your idea for pasta salads. So many different combinations of veggies to add to all kinds of fun pasta shapes.

    Reply

  96. Sarah Lposted August 25, 2013 at 11:05 pm

    I like the adult floral set, but they’re all cute!

    Reply

  97. Carolynposted August 26, 2013 at 4:18 am

    My kids head back next week, and it’s going to be so strange! Adorable lunch box sets!

    Reply

  98. kateposted August 26, 2013 at 6:35 am

    Adult floral. So cute, and so much better than the lame grocery bag I use now!

    Reply

  99. Yashicaposted August 26, 2013 at 6:50 am

    I like the adult floral one

    Reply

  100. Alexandraposted August 26, 2013 at 6:51 am

    I love the adult floral, I have a similar one from built and I am in love with it!!!

    Reply

  101. Mercedesposted August 26, 2013 at 9:28 am

    Adult floral

    Reply

  102. Kimposted August 26, 2013 at 8:53 pm

    Little kid Dog!

    Reply

  103. Angieposted August 27, 2013 at 6:29 am

    The big kid girl

    Reply

  104. Sarahposted August 27, 2013 at 7:31 am

    Little kid owl of course!!! ;-)

    Reply

  105. Terryposted August 27, 2013 at 10:01 am

    Love the Owl kit but would have to go with the geometric or floral for the teen.

    Reply

  106. Mary Adamsposted August 27, 2013 at 11:35 am

    Love the owl and geometric!

    Reply

  107. TCposted August 27, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    Big Kid Boy – I think it’s hilarious.

    Reply

  108. Sarah Jposted August 27, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    The adult floral. Love this giveaway

    Reply

  109. cwposted August 27, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    The adult floral

    Reply

  110. Colette (Coco in the Kitchen)posted August 27, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    Great ideas! I really love the old fashioned aluminum stackable lunch containers, too.

    Reply

  111. Carmenposted August 27, 2013 at 8:45 pm

    Adult Floral

    Reply

  112. Julieposted August 27, 2013 at 9:29 pm

    The Skull set is super cute!!! Love the lunch ideas! I have just sent my first off to kindergarten and this is SO helpful :)

    Reply

  113. Laura Armeniposted August 27, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    Adult floral!

    Reply

  114. Nikkiposted August 28, 2013 at 5:16 am

    i like doggie-bag for little boy.. but i kind-of like owl too. i think i need one regardless if i win too..

    Reply

  115. Brenda Nposted August 28, 2013 at 8:14 am

    Little boy dog…but really I’ll take any of them:)

    Reply

  116. Cinellaposted August 28, 2013 at 9:24 am

    The big kid girl!

    Reply

  117. Justine McD.posted August 28, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    My son would love the Big Kid Boy bag

    Reply

  118. Kim McCallieposted August 29, 2013 at 6:39 am

    I like Adult Floral.

    Reply

  119. Julsposted August 29, 2013 at 7:08 am

    Adult Floral suits me well. No kiddos in school!

    Reply

  120. Kaliposted August 29, 2013 at 8:57 am

    Love the Owl bag.

    Reply

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