by the ADI Staff, MMNN Contributor

It’s hard to believe it’s back to school time already! For many of us summer is a great time to sleep in, head to the beach, spend time outdoors, and avoid packing those dreaded school lunches every day! Packing a school lunch can seem like a chore especially if your children are tough to please!  Here are a few handy tips to make school lunches your kids will actually want to eat!

Involve your kids in planning and making the lunches- if your child helps decide what they want to bring to lunch, they are more likely to eat it. To make this easier, have your child include foods from at least three of the four food groups, that way you know they are getting a balanced lunch. Try to avoid highly processed packaged foods with a lot of fat and salt, these tend to cost more and have little nutritional value.

On the weekends, set aside time to do your lunch box preparation: chop veggies and fruit, boil eggs, pre-cook some meals that you know your kids will like
Cook extra food at meals- dinner, leftovers make a quick and easy lunch and prep as much as you can the night before, so you are not rushing around in the morning.

It is important to consider food safety when your sending your children to school with a bagged lunch. Check to see if the school has a refrigerator to store lunches and if not you can invest in some reusable cool packs.

Here are some kid favourite lunches to get you started: