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Is your vegetarian (non-vegan) in public school? What are you packing for lunches?

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
Obviously I pack for my vgetarian DD, as school lunchs are full of meat and preservatives. My 2nd DD has a sensory disorder, though not vegetarian. Bteween the two, I am using an hour and a hald to make lunches/snacks for each day. I'm stumbling over ideas. As of now we have used...

Almond butter & organic honey
Almond butter & jelly
Veggie "Bologna" and Cheecse (she is not vegan at this point)
Almond Butter and veggies to dip.
Veggies and ranach dressing to dip
Fruit leathers for snacks
Fresh Fruits
Cottage Cheese
yogurts

That's about it.....same things over and over and over and over and over.

What Vegetarian Non/Vegan lunch packing do you do???
post #2 of 29
I don't have any kids at school, but I don't see anything wrong with keeping the menu simple and consistent. I always change things up at dinner and rotate what fruits and veggies we eat so things don't get boring. DS and I eat almond butter sandwiches for lunch almost everyday.

But you could do hummus, sandwich wraps using tortillas, pita sandwiches, leftovers (if they can heat them up at school), and soup and crackers (again, if they can heat them up, or you could heat them up in the am and put them in a good-quality thermos). You could slice fresh fruit for the sandwiches instead of doing jelly or honey. Strawberries are good for that.
post #3 of 29
My second grader is dairy free and vegetarian. He requests hummus every single day. Then always somethign for dipping: pita chips, pitas, flatbread crackers. He also likes black olives, pickles, baby carrots. Some days we do soy yogurt, granola bars, potato salad, muffin, breads etc.

I like to have some extra things from dinner that he will eat cold the next day like wild rice, pasta salad, potato salad. But hummus seems to be his favorite

For a snack, they can only bring plain fruit or veggies. So- we do banana, cut apples, black olives, raisins, oranges, etc.
post #4 of 29
Thread Starter 
Thank you!!

Hummus and flat bread crackers have been added to my shopping list. (literally!)
post #5 of 29
My daughter is vegan, so I don't do any non-vegan lunch packing, and she's not in public school, but we pack lunches for days when we'll be away from home.

What about refried beans and with veggies and tortilla chips to dip in it?

I make up what I call a nibble box with cubes of tofu, whole grain crackers, veggies, dips and cut up fruit.

The tofu fish sticks from the vegan lunch box blog are good cold, and we've switched the spices around on them to make something more chicken-strip flavored, too.
post #6 of 29
Thread Starter 
Tofu cooking is something I've struggled with for two years now.

I have to be honest. We order it from a local restaurant plain - no sauce - just tofu squares....she loooooves is. I don't get why when I cook it, it comes out NOTHING like she likes. Any tips, tofu mamas/eaters?
post #7 of 29
Are you sure it's not you that wants the variety? My kids are happy with pretty much PB&J, PB&honey, or cheese sandwiches 99% of the time. You can make sandwiches and freeze them and then just pop them in the lunch box. ? Think of it as homemade uncrustables.

We also do homemade "lunchables"... crackers, cut up cheese, hummus, apple slices.

What about a room temperature pita pizza?

Wraps with nut butter and apple slices?

Check out the bento box things like rice molds and egg molds. If your kids like hardboiled eggs, star shaped and bunny shaped eggs are quite fun. Sometimes I'll put in a hardboiled egg, Kashi granola bar or crackers, and fruit. They're very happy.

My kids like to be given a pita bread and triangles of Vache qui Rit cheese so they can make their own cheese sandwiches.

Also search the web. There are tons of Vegetarian and Vegan lunchbox idea articles.
post #8 of 29
Thread Starter 
umsami,

She commented on how she loves to open her lunch and see what I made that day. Since then I've enjoyed changing it up for her food-wise and leaving notes and "coupons" and quotes and such. Also, she eats more at lunch than any other meal, so I like to be sure she's getting ina lot of quality foods.

That said, I also have a daughter in kindergarten who has sensory integration disorder and she will only eat BP. Every. Single. Day. PB, yogurt, raisins, horizon milk.

So, I guess it might be more me who wants to change it up for my oldest, but I have no problem doing the exact same thing every day for my middle DD.

There used to be these lunch box sets on Amazon that had organic, gluten free, vegetarian, etc themes to each box. They had everything from drink to main source of protein. I can't recall what they were called, but they aren;t selling them anymore as I have searched for them extensively on Amazon.

I'll google, too. Google has disappointed me lately with the ads at the start of the search results, but thats a whole other topic!
post #9 of 29
I remember those! They were also halal They had them on Costco.com at one time too. I can't remember their name, but I totally remember what they looked like.

I did a google search and found these... not what I was thinking of...but still....

http://jakesfoods.com/
post #10 of 29
Just took DD out of kindergarten this week to homeschool her (yay! ) but when she was in school, here are a few of her favorites:
(she's not vegan)

plain cheese and spinach tortellini

noodles with raw cashews, red pepper, tomatoes, feta and some kind of dressing I could make from whatever I had in my fridge

vegetable sushi from the grocery store (I did this a few times as a treat and she asked for it every day)

pressed-frozen-thawed-pan fried tofu with lime wedges to squeeze over it

pb&j, of course!

cheese and avocado sandwich--I usually squeezed a little lime on the avocado to stop it from turning brown and she said it always lasted

chickpeas, olives and cubes of feta

sliced avocado, cheese and hearty bread

coconut rice with raisins, chickpeas and broccoli

rice with sliced almonds, dried fruit, cinnamon and honey with a little soy milk mixed in to keep it moist

I usually shopped and cooked twice a week for her lunch so she'd have the same things 2 or 3 times/week. Things like the pasta and coconut rice, I did (and still do) make big batches of those so we can eat them for snacks and meals too. Often I put leftovers in from whatever we had for dinner. My kid is only 5, though, and I did wonder about how other kids would react as she got older when she had "weird-looking" vegan/vegetarian food in her lunch.
post #11 of 29
My daughter has been taking salads lately... Romaine, carrot slivers, red peppers, sprouts, cucs, tomatoes, craisins, cut up cheese.... She's loving it.

My son had taken PB or PB&J (almost) every.single.day since Kindergarten.
post #12 of 29
Pita with hummus

Tortilla chips with homemade bean dip

Soup

Bagels

Muffins

no nuts at my dd's school so I make tahini free hummus for her lunch. I also send a smoothie with lots of fruit and veggie protein with her in the morning. Her teacher allows her to eat during class so that carried her through the morning.
post #13 of 29
I started a thread of school lunch ideas at the beginning of the year

http://www.mothering.com/discussions....php?t=1250701
post #14 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by eepster View Post
I started a thread of school lunch ideas at the beginning of the year

http://www.mothering.com/discussions....php?t=1250701

You have all been SO much help!!!! THANK YOU!!!!!!!
post #15 of 29
Posting to subscribe I'm in the same boat, trying to feed my sensory-challenged 5 year old who is getting sick of what I have been sending for him for school lunches. We have only been vegetarian since April and it has been a challenge first for me to think outside the box (with meal planning in general) and second to get my kids to try new foods. It has gotten to the point that he is not eating much of anything at school and is starving when he gets home because he is just not interested in what I am sending anymore.... Thank you for all the suggestions!
post #16 of 29
post #17 of 29
I did public school. I sacked the same lunch from elementary to high school. apple jelly sandwich, snack size yogurt, bag of chips, capri san/juice box. Not the healthiest, but it was vegetarian!
post #18 of 29
All you moms are EXTREMLY lucky...lunches have been HELL for us. Ds is dairy free vegetarian. And his third lunch in someone said his noodles with tofu was weird people food soooooo that was the end of anything that looked at all different not to mention the school is nut free and the class is pineapple free

Were stuck on

Egg salad sandwiches
Unsweetened all natural strawberry jam sandwiches
Wrap with hummus and veggies-was shocked he ate it
cold cheeseless veggie pizza

Then the extras are
cherry tomatoes
applesauce
fruit to go bars
rice cakes
crackers

I bought bread sticks and sent him with hummus to dip and it was a no go. Im hoping to get some vegan cheese and send him with that but honestly he doesnt really care for it

I'm so annoyed. He's even begun not eating certain foods at home b/c the kids say its weird food
post #19 of 29
Thread Starter 
That must be frustrating with the dairy-free on top of the vegeterian aspect for school lunches!

Maybe you could take him through the store with you to find the things he can and will eat at school specifically. You'd have to plan to do so when you had quite a bit of time, as I imagine it takes thorough label reading and such with the dairy-free aspect?
post #20 of 29
Celery with cream cheese or a nut spread with raisins on top (Ants on a log)
dried plums, dried apricots
sesame sticks
broccoli cole slaw
Any sandwich cut out with a cookie cutter
Homemade pudding (easy peasy, with milk and eggs and cornstarch)
Sliced banana to dip in her yogurt
sliced apple with nut spread of choice (gotta include nutella in there sometimes too)
miso soup in a thermos (any soup she likes in a thermos keeping it warm changes things up)
tortilla, cream cheese, roasted red pepper rolled up and sliced in rounds
spinach dip with bread cubes (again use cute toothpics for cubes)
roasted red pepper hummus on flat out with sliced cheese and olives, rolled up , cut up in rounds
Cucumber sandwich (dill weed, butter on one piece of bread, cream cheese on other, cucumber sandwiched in between)
trail mix (her fav dried fruits, nuts, even some choco chips thrown in for fun)
breakfast for lunch (zucchini pancakes with syrup on side)
red beans and rice with her fav seasonings

I second you looking at bento ideas. They have the cutest little toothpicks with character on them and sandwich cut outs and all kinds of ideas for presentation. So even if it is just a piece of string cheese cut up into pieces, she has a cute toothpick to eat it with.
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