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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.



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


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.


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

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


  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


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

    Will you adopt me?


  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.


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

    WOW so many great lunch ideas Sommer :)


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

    Love the big boy skull lunch box


  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! :)


  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


  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!


  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! :)


  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!


  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.


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

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


  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


  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.


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

    Love the little girl owl


  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.


  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.


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

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


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

    Love the pickle roll up idea!


  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


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

    Love the big kid girl!


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

    I like the adult floral


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

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


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

    I like the adult floral


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

    I like the Big Kid Boy and Girl.



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

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


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

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


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

    So cute! I love the owl one.


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

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


  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!!


  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!


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

    I like the little owl lunch box!


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

    Little Kid Dog


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

    green skulls


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

    They look adorable! Thanks for the giveaway.


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

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


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

    NY Big Apples Buddies Astro Owl


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

    Love the adult flower!


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

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


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

    So cute! Love the owl and the doggie!


  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.


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

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


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

    Would love to win the adult flower bag.


  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!


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

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


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

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


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

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


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

    I’d prefer the adult floral.


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

    I love the Adult Floral one!


  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


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

    Little kid owl!


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

    I like the Big Kid Boy (Green Skulls)!


  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!!


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

    My son would love the Liitle Kid Dog!!


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

    the dog is cute


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

    adult floral, please.


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

    I like the Big Kid Girl style.


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

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


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

    I love the adult foral and the kids dog.


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

    the adult foral


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

    I like the adult floral.


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

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


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

    I would love to win the adult floral


  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!


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

    I love the Adult Floral one!


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

    Little boy dog.


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

    Brilliant ideas! :)


  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.


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

    I love the little dog one.


  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.


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

    Love the Adult Floral!


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

    Adult floral so cute


  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!


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

    Definitely Adult Floral!


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

    Love the adult floral…PLEASE!


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

    My son would love the skulls!


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

    Adult floral please!


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

    I like the big boy kid, or adult floral.


  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.


  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!


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

    I love the green skulls!


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

    I love the little kids owl bag


  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.


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

    The big kid floral!


  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.


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

    Love the adult floral!


  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!


  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 :)


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

    I love little kid dog!


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

    Love it, little kid dog bag


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

    big kid boy!


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

    so cute!


  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.


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

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


  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!


  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!


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

    I like the adult floral one


  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!!!


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

    Adult floral


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

    Little kid Dog!


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

    The big kid girl


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

    Little kid owl of course!!! ;-)


  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.


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

    Love the owl and geometric!


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

    Big Kid Boy – I think it’s hilarious.


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

    The adult floral. Love this giveaway


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

    The adult floral


  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.


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

    Adult Floral


  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 :)


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

    Adult floral!


  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..


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

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


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

    The big kid girl!


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

    My son would love the Big Kid Boy bag


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

    I like Adult Floral.


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

    Adult Floral suits me well. No kiddos in school!


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

    Love the Owl bag.


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