This is the time of year that kids open sad sacks during lunchtime. By now, even formerly “exciting” menu items are boring.
Up the lunch game with a foldout placement, colorful cutlery, or foods packed in mini-containers, when being surprised at what you find adds fun and peer interest.
Go back to that list you made last fall, when you vowed to help your child pack lunches with sticks that transform chicken nuggets into pops and spiral veggies that turn root veggies into twists. Refer to your list of stackable protein to layer on a cracker and colorful dips to brighten even a cold winter day.
Even picky eaters will take a second look (and perhaps another bite.)
Will this generation of students become the first to drink from a bio-degradable straw in their cardboard milk carton at the school cafeteria?
The commitment to eliminate plastic straws has gone beyond paper straws to include edible alternatives. Innovative options for packaging school lunch elements continue to grow.
Has your child’s school been successful in finding eco-solutions?
Although major brands are starting to launch reusable packaging, companies that service school cafeterias have a long way to go.
The zero -waste movement could get a head start by simply starting with something as simple as the apple juice containers served at school breakfasts. What a difference if the juice was served in reusable, empty containers that would be collected, cleaned and returned !
I’m thrilled that our twelve-year-old grandson has a life skills class that includes cooking.
Josh has always liked to help his mom in the kitchen, and except for melting a cooking utensil in the microwave (whoops!) he’s enjoyed success.
Kids, who are spending their formative years as Junior Chefs and watching You Tube cooking demonstrations, are already tuned into making wise food choices. They know how to read labels and look for ingredients they can pronounce. They tend to be brand agnostic.
Kids also love tech. That fact alone could dramatically change the culture of grocery shopping, as today’s children begin to make more buying decisions. Food delivery by drone, anyone?
Remember the Cronut? We’ve come a long way since that first croissant hybrid.
Now, kids pull pickle-flavored popcorn and croissants stuffed with peanut butter and pineapple from their lunch boxes.
Students today are experimenting with savory snacks and hybrid treats we could never have imagined, but who knows? Perhaps they’ll actually eat what they take to school!
Do you dread tossing away leftovers that your kids won’t eat?
An entire new industry is creating food and beverages from unused or leftover food.
Many farmers markets now set aside a section for veggies that would typically be considered too ugly, too big or too small to sell. But some in the food industry are going beyond that to create products from ingredients that are rescued or discarded.
Sounds like sustainability might find a place at the dinner table.
If resolutions have included an upgrade of the brown bag you pack for school, ask your child what classmates bring to eat.
In a single school cafeteria, it’s now common to see kids eating vegetarian, gluten-free and vegan meals. The Junior Chef generation, that has grown up watching You Tube cooking videos, is bringing food experimentation to school.