Project Lunch Box - 30 Day Challenge #1 - MarlaMeridith.com

Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge #1

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Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge  | MarlaMeridith.com

Can we do a little project together for the next 30 days? I pitch that we all partner up to pack healthy meals for ourselves (if you eat lunch away from home) and our kids. Are you in? I sure hope so. If you can’t swing five days a week for 4 weeks than can you go with at least a day or two a week? I bet once you get started you will see how easy it is to pack a quick, healthy and delicious lunch box.

We are starting this event on a weekend so you have some time to go grocery shopping. I have a shopping list if you need a few suggestions to point you in the right direction.

I will post regular updates, ingredient choices, product and meal ideas on Facebook. That will be the destination to share ideas during this challenge. Post your ideas to my wall and to your own. Please join us over there to stay in touch. We can also use the #projectlunchbox on Twitter to grab each others attention.

I have a free downloadable PDF 30 Days of Healthy Lunch Box Meals just for you.

Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge  | MarlaMeridith.com

That up there is a basic turkey sandwich with fruit. I know you guys can do that. Some little gluten free rice crackers are tucked away in there too.

Most of us can agree that packing a healthy lunch box is a challenging and an often daunting task. We are all exhausted after busy days. What we want to do is cuddle up with a hot cup of tea and our favorite magazine….By the way I have a new favorite magazine, take a peek here.

What we need to do is put the magazine down and pack lunch for the next day. The magazine can come out after. Play your favorite music and get packing. If you want to share some of your favorite playlists I would LOVE that!

Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge  | MarlaMeridith.com

I always find it is so much easier to work together as a team. I admit that some days I have a hard time figuring out what the heck to pack in my kids lunch boxes. I want to hear your recipe ideas, favorite magazines, ingredient suggestions, etc. Share your blog links and other links you have found so we can all help each other.

This is an introduction to a lifelong project. Each day of our lives should be a celebration of healthy through great food choices. I am curious to see how this project unfolds and I look forward to working the steps and keeping the pledge with you, as a team……

Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge  | MarlaMeridith.com
Many readers ask all the time about how I handle the daily grind of packing lunch for myself and my kids. This blog was started because of people asking about my daily lunch boxes, so why not bring it all full circle. I want you to join me in the Project LunchBox!

Above is my Baby Peas and Cheese Frittata and below is one of our favorite pasta recipes with Chicken, Capers and Cherry Tomatoes.

Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge  | MarlaMeridith.com
When I concept and create recipes for this blog, my goal is to inspire healthy, happy, high energy lives through whole foods. Eating real, unprocessed food not only tastes better but it is great for our physical and mental health too. When our bodies don’t need to cut through the clutter of chemicals and weird processed ingredients we think clearer, can keep our weight in check and burst with energy.

Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge  | MarlaMeridith.com

Why Project Lunch Box?

  • Real, unprocessed foods are best for our physical and mental health.
  • If we help guide what our children eat while away from home, there is a better guarantee for school success, overall happiness and health.
  • It costs less to pack lunch at home. With tighter budgets these days it makes sense to bring your own lunch.
  • We want our children and loved ones to thrive. Home cooked meals are best (unless your school or work cafeteria has embraced a real food meal plan)

Together let’s Take a Pledge to get it right…..

  • I understand that I can help decide what my family eats. #projectlunchbox reinforces that decision.
  • Made a decision to provide meals with Real Whole Food ingredients as often as possible
  • My goal is to provide nourishing meals for my family, even when they are away from home. (work, school, camp, etc.)
  • I will include healthy snacks to keep nourished & strong throughout the day
  • I will use re-usable containers and lunch boxes to reduce waste and care for the environment.
  • I will spread the word with our school, friends and loved ones about Project Lunch Box.
  • I will encourage positive, mindful food behaviors including portion control & taking the time to sit and enjoy a meal.
  • One box. One Meal at a Time. Each day provides a new window of opportunity to get it right.
  • Even if I do not pack lunches for kids I support the mission to feed healthy food to those I care for.
  • Please join us to help promote the Lunch Box Project by tweeting with the hashtag #projectlunchbox and becoming a fan on Facebook and Twitter  for regular updates.

Please be sure to link back to this post with either a text link or a MarlaMeridith.com badge (grab one from our badges page) to show your support. Check out our spiffy new Project LunchBox graphics. There is this one….


Or this one. We LOVE lots of choices around here….

Are you up for joining me in this 30 day challenge? I can’t wait to share ideas together.

Some MarlaMeridith.com recipes to inspire….

Helpful & Healthful Blog Links
A few to get you started…..

Graphic with pink fleur de lis for MarlaMeridith.com
Giveaway Details

This giveaway is now over, thanks for your entries! Congrats to #23 Kim Steadman and #289 Katie. Please email me your shipping info.

Because I love you & I want to see you eating healthy, fabulous food I have an awesome Easy Lunchboxes giveaway for you. 2 winners get to choose from the cooler bag of their choice + a four pack of container inserts Cool huh! I adore these lunch boxes and use them for myself and my kids all the time.

How to Enter

Leave some comments….tell me why you want an Easy Lunchbox in your life. You have until Wednesday, September 21st, 12 midnight PST to enter this giveaway. TWO winners will be chosen via random.org and will have 3 days to respond or a new winner will be selected. Open to residents of the USA.

To earn additional entries, leave a separate comment for each of the steps listed below. If you don’t leave separate comments for each step, we will not be able to include them.

  1. Tell me your favorite thing to pack in a lunch box.
  2. Add the MarlaMeridith.com badge or our *NEW* Project LunchBox badge into your sidebar or somewhere on your blog
  3. Head over to the Easy Lunchboxes webpage and tell me what color cooler bag you want.
  4. Take the pledge by adding your blog link above (let us know you added it)
  5. Tweet this giveaway, being sure to include my Twitter handle (@MarlaMeridith). Here’s a sample tweet you could use or make up your own: {giveaway} Join @MarlaMeridith for 30 day #projectlunchbox @EasyLunchboxes has cooler/container sets for 2 winners. http://su.pr/221xT1
  6. Follow @MarlaMeridith on Twitter
  7. Follow @EasyLunchboxes on Twitter
  8. Sign up for my Email or RSS feeds
  9. Stumble this post & follow me @familyfresh on StumbleUpon
  10. Add a link to this post on your blog.
  11. Follow @MarlaMeridith on Instagram

*You can stay in touch with MarlaMeridith.com or Easy Lunchboxes on Facebook too.

Brown Bag ChallengeI am adding this post to the Food Network’s Brown-Bag Challenge, a month-long initiative to eat consciously and save money by packing a lunch each weekday instead of eating out. Join us here and share what you’re eating on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #brownbag.

MarlaMeridith.com disclosure: The LunchBox Project is based on personal real life experience. You need to do what is best for you and your family. These are guidelines based on research, commitment and experimentation. Please consult your MD if you have health concerns or questions for you and your family.

379 Responses to Project Lunch Box – 30 Day Challenge #1

    • Thanks Lauren, Perhaps one day in the next few years you will be joining the lunch packing bunch. lt is still important to make your own meals & eat at home (or bring homemade meals) whenever possible. Balacnce is key. Enjoy time at home with your daughter, those are fun days :)

  1. Marla I love what you’ve come up with! I pack lunch + snacks for both my hub and I everyday. These lunch boxes sure would make it easier… I feel like I’m always looking for ‘the right sized’ container.

    You are promoting an awesome thing here! Count me in on that 30 day challenge :) I hope many more join too!

    • Yay Heather…so glad you are going to join us. I know you have loads of recipes that would go awesome in the lunch box. So proud of you for packing lunch & snacks for the two of you each & every day. Please share a few of your links if you wish :)

  2. It’s only week #2 of preschool for my toddler but packing her lunch is the funnest part – you know, besides that 11 hours of “me time” a week. Her teacher asked me yesterday, “Ooooh. So what does Landry have for lunch today?” I think her teacher knows good food when she sees it :)

    • Ha! Shawnda I love when the teachers oogle our kids meals. Must mean we are doing something right! Isn’t it amazing having those extra hours to yourself each week?? Glad to hear Landry is getting those amazing home packed meals. Come to think of it I would LOVE for you to pack my lunch :)

  3. i want to have an easy lunchbox because here in america food is far from easy with the processed ingredients to simplicity will be healthier for our bodies to digest and be happy with!

  4. every day in lunch i look forward to a chicken sandwich with spinach, tomatoes, hot sauce, and arabic bean sauce! so goood! plus i love the fruit part of my lunch box~~!!!

  5. This is very cool! Lots of times I have no inspiration at all for lunches for school. It’s worse when I get to school and I have nothing delicious or exciting in my lunch. I make a point of bringing a healthy lunch with me to school everyday but somedays my lunch is very, very boring!

    • Lexi, happens to all of us. It is difficult day in and day out to get those healthy, tasty, creative lunch boxes rolled out. When we take the little bit of extra time and effort it is so worth it!

  6. I linked up a post of mine in your linkhop Fast, Easy, Healthy Snack Options…that are kid friendly. Everything is vegan & GF too.

    I love that you’re promoting this.

    I pack 100% of the lunches for our family..Scott’s, mine, Skylar’s for when we’re out. Between the cost savings and the health benefits, it’s a must!

    • Katrina, PB & banana sandwiches are favorites of ours too. Unfortunately I am not allowed to send any nut butters to school with the kids. Gotta be respectful of the “nut free zone”

  7. I try my best to pack my 2 boys lunches daily, I think last year they only had hot lunch maybe 5 times…I think it is very important to send them with a healthy balanced lunch each day.. I get alot of greif from family for doing so, they seem to think if it is served at school it should be good enough. Uggh, I get so frustrated but I truly believe I am doing what is best for MY kids…so I pledge with all my heart to pack my kids lunches EACH day…great idea and I look forward to the new ideas..thank you..I also love the lunch coolers…:)

    • KIm, thanks so much for the heartfelt, honest comment. All we can do each day is our best & it sounds like you are doing a wonderful job packing lunches for your 2 sons. Sorry to hear people give you grief for that. Lots of people don’t get the importance of this. You are doing what is best for your kids, that is for certain. I occasionally allow my daughter to get hot lunch at school and she ends up with belly aches, poor gal. I let her try it every now & then so she feels part of the group & doesn’t covet “that food’ 😉 Soooo glad you took the pledge. Do be sure to share some ideas with us over here and on Facebook too. Bet you have some great ones!

  8. Marla! This is SO wonderful what you’re bringing together here via this post/this challenge! Such fantastic info, resources and inspiration. I’m just delighted to be sponsoring your giveaway and LOVE that you’re such a fan of my EasyLunchboxes :) …And you know how I feel about your recipes and those to-die-over photos!
    But I’m just super happy that you are spreading the “pack a healthy lunch” message in such a fun, helpful, and interactive way. This is gonna be great. Thank you for that!!!

    • Awww Kelly, I am so happy you are as excited about this as I am. You know I have been a great fan of you as a person and the Easy LunchBoxes ever since I tried them over a year ago. The new color colors are a blast and I always love the easy bento style containers.
      I hope that many new people get to try out your awesome product. Looking forward to seeing folks take the pledge and join in the fun. xxoo

  9. I pack lunch daily for my son, but would love to start doing it for myself to eat heathier – an awesome new lunchtote would be a great way to start.

  10. I would love to win the lunchbox system! I stay home with my young kiddos right now but am going back to school myself in the spring and will be packing my lunch to keep healthy :)

  11. What a fantastic challenge! As much as I really, really want to pack a healthy lunch for my son every day for school, I’ve really been struggling with it. He is a picky eater and I’m not exactly disciplined enough to make sure it is in the fridge and ready to go before I’m ready to go to bed… then there’s the morning rush and the “**sigh** Just grab lunch at school”. Ugh.

    I love the lunch bags and the bento-style divided containers. I’m just starting my own little collection of Bento inspired lunch items (I think I may becoming addicted to all the cutesy things!) but don’t have a lot … yet! I really like the divided containers though because it forces me to think about what I’m leaving out (fruit, veggie, protein, etc). I’m always looking for new lunch ideas. Can’t wait to take on this challenge with the rest of you!

    • Hi Cathy! Love your honesty & so glad you are gonna join us in the challenge. Girl we all do what we can. Perhaps a few of these days you pack the lunch box before bed, i know how hard it is. Waiting until the morning it will never happen. It is hard enough to get the kids cleaned up, dressed, fed & out the door. Let alone get ourselves ready to be seen in public 😉 Hopefully we can all help each other out with this project. And keep smiling along the way! By the way, I totally understand the addiction to all that bento stuff. It is so freakin’ cute!

  12. Favorite thing to pack – Well the item my boys love most when I pack are hot dogs in a blanket. I take a bunch of nitrite free hot dogs, make whole wheat dough and wrap the dough around the dogs and bake. I put them all in the freezer and then I just have to thaw them before it’s time to pack it. I normally send it with some dipping ketchup.

  13. I would love the black cooler so everyone is my house is comfortable using it and I could take it to all my kids sports events with healthy snacks – and it would always look clean! :-)

  14. Im taking the pledge but I have no blog. Im obessed with other ppl’s blogs lol. There have been a few health issues in my family and I am determined to get away from the packaged processed stuff and get more healthy food into my picky eaters. Its going to be a challenge but Im up for it!

  15. I’m following you on twitter now :)
    What Cathy D said about the sections helping to think about food groups is so true! I find that I start a lunch with one item in mind, maybe a leftover, or something fresh I picked up especially for their lunch, then think of things to go with it – and having the other sections DOES make me think – like, ok now I have 2 grains, I don’t need those crackers, i need a fruit or veg…

  16. This is the first year that I’ve had to pack a lunch for my 1st grader (Kindergarten is 1/2 day where we live) and while I’ve been using individual reusable plastic containers, I LOVE the idea of using just one and being able to see all of the options for lunch. Will be more visual appealing for her and might encourage more colorful eating.

    • Amy, I agree. These bento boxes are so fun for presentation plus you have fewer pieces that have the chance of getting lost. Less clean up too! Having a 4 pack also makes it easy to prepare a few ahead of time to stack in the fridge. Sometimes I cut up fruit or veggies ahead of time and add them to a few boxes anticipating whatever sandwich or meal will go inside. Congrats on your daughter entering 1st grade!

  17. Thank you for doing this. I love it! And, I am looking so forward to getting more healthy lunch ideas. The first week of school, my son told me that one of his teachers commented every day on what a healthy lunch his mom had packed him. That made me smile. :)

  18. I am up for the 30 day challenge. I love the lunch bag and containers! I am always looking for ways to feed my husband and seven kids (six of those boys!) healthy and fun meals.

  19. I’m so excited about this challenge…..however, if I win I will give the EasyLunchBoxes away as a gift! I am a HUGE fan of ELB, and I personally have 2 sets of containers and 3 coolers. I’ve been posting all of my lunchbox ideas for the past several weeks, and so many of my friends say they’re very impressed with my “amazing” lunches. I would love to place these in their hands and let them see that there’s something magical about them as soon as you open one and place it on the counter. They would realize that THEY could be AMAZING too! 😉

    I’ve been packing both of my kids’ lunches since 2002, and my thought process changed forever the day I discovered Easy Lunch Boxes last Spring. I want to share this wonderful inspiration! I posted this page on my blogs’ Facebook page, and I’ve added the badge to my sidebar.

    Hmmm….my favorite thing to pack……That would probably be “fruit pucks.” What are fruit pucks, you ask? Fruit pucks are pureed fresh fruit, (nothing else) poured into a mini muffin pan, (or ice cube tray) and frozen. They resemble little hockey pucks. They thaw into a nice sherbet-like consistency by lunch time, and my kids LOVE them.

    Thank you for setting this up, Marla. What a wonderful idea! I’m following you and ELB on Facebook and Twitter. 😉

    P.S. How about a BLUE cooler? 😉

    • Becka, your enthusiasm is contagious! I love that girl!! Sorry it has taken me so long to respond. Go you packing lunches since 2002 – that is awesome & I aspire to be so ambitious. The fruit pucks are an amazing idea of which I will try. What kid wouldn’t go crazy for that? You are so kind to hand over an ELB if you win. They are life changing aren’t they 😉

  20. I made a committment this year to send my 4 kids with lunch 4 / 5 days this year. In only the 2nd week last week, I nearly crumbled on Thursday but…I did it. One of my kids is such a picky eater, I think that if I send small amounts of things he really likes he will actually eat something for lunch this year. I love some of your recipes and I will definitely try them.

    • Thanks Suzanne, I do hope you get to try some of my recipes. Geesh, packing lunch for 4 kids day in & out is like running a marathon. I tip my hat to you. What you are doing for your children is so wonderful. Also so much more budget friendly :)

  21. I’m very excited about this challenge. I myself am getting ready to back to work, to keep things balanced, healthy, and delicious is very important to our family. I’m going to work om adding more color to mine and my kids lunches. Thanks for being an inspiration!

  22. I would love one for my husband, who is trying so hard to adapt to my push for healthiness in his meals. It is hard for someone who grew up eating McDonalds at least 5 times a week, pizza and eating out or delivery Chinese 5 times a week, and all the rest processed junk out of a box, thought corn was a vegetable, and drank Koolaid, soda, and chocolate milk almost exclusively for much of his life. He is doing great. This would help.

  23. I would love to have the Easy Lunchbox system to pack lunches because it’s “easy” Then my daughter would only have to open on thing instead of several.

      • I make a homemade crust and put in my bread maker to make it super simple. I am looking for a great tasting whole wheat crust that my kids will like. I also package up some tomato sauce and low fat cheese. I have slowly started adding some more veggies for them to put on their pizza. My little girls love caramelized onions. My oldest daughter just recently found she likes green onions, so I will be added that to her lunch. They are not big into meat on their pizza. I will be posting our lunchables on my blog this week.

        • Wende, I am in love with this whole idea. Please share the link to your pizza post after you publish. Add it to my link up on this post and my Facebook wall too. Will be fun for all to see & very helpful.
          Cool that your kids are trying all those new foods too :)

  24. I love to pack soup, chili, or warm stuff for lunch as it can get quite cold in the North, and my husband works out in the elements a lot.

  25. Blue or black cooler for my guy. I am up for the challenge, but don’t participate on facebook or twitter, so I am hoping some of the good information and stuff will spill over onto your blog posts.

  26. Awesome post! Great idea. I need a pink one so I van have something healthy with me on the the go. I feel like I live out of my car. Better to have something in a lunch box than grab something I will regret later. I love the pink one.

    • Miranda, I am addicted to PB&J. So is my daughter. Unfortunately their school is a nut free zone & she won’t go for sunflower seed butter (which I love!)

  27. I pack my kids lunch every day of the school year. We promote waste free lunch at his school. I love using my laptop lunch box but could use another one to add some variety. My son actually loves leftover’s from the night before, I use a s.s thermos so he have a hot lunch. His second choice would be turkey and cheese on sour dough bread with fresh fruit and veggies. But he’s easy and eats everything, it’s my five year old that’s the challenging one!

    I just did a lunch box series on my blog from choosing lunch box to creating a monthly calendar of lunches, check it out: http://smartfoodandfit.com/smart-school-lunch-box/ – I also linked back to your site so my followers can find more recipe ideas.

    • Lisa, sounds like we all have a kid that is a more challenging eater. My son tends to be a bit more picky than my daughter- though both have their moments!! It is fun to switch up the lunchbox from time to time to keep things interesting. Go you making lunches every day!!

  28. Ok, here goes…
    My favorite thing to pack in lunches is a tortellini salad with a vinegar/oil dressing and a variety of colorful veggies. And for protein, chunks of salami!

  29. Ok, now that I’m done flooding the comments section with all my “entries” I just wanted to say that I’m really enjoying reading your blog posts. And your photography is superb! (Bordering on food 3x for me!) I’ve been a big fan of bento type lunches for a long time and it’s great to see so many more moms bringing the idea to the states! Looking forward to reading more on your blog and trying some of your recipes!

  30. I am a first grade teacher and I take my lunch every single day. My favorite thing to take is a peanut butter and banana sandwich, some cucumbers and carrots with veggie dip, and strawberries. I really need a new lunchbox and containers. I love reuasable containers instead of ziploc bags. :)

  31. I don’t have a blog, but I can tell lots of teachers that I work with about your blog and all about the challenge. It would be so cool if all our faculty did it together!!!

    • OMG Vanessa I love that idea!! How awesome to get the teachers involved. The perfect roll models. Plus, if they all pack their own healthy lunches it will give them more energy to get through the day :)
      Who’s blog did you find me on?

  32. Marla, I make my lunch everyday but we don’t have children yet so that part will have to wait. Every parent should read this post and take the small time needed to pack healthy meals for their kids. Keep up the great work, M!

    • Awww, thanks Mike. Your jelly muffins post made me so happy. I must make those for my kids. Thinking that your mom made you nibbles like that is so sweet!
      With the way you cook I could not imagine you wanting to grab bites on the road. Once you make most of your own food it is hard to settle for anything less than the freshest & best ingredients. When you do have kids some day they will be more than spoiled with your great taste.

  33. This is such a great idea! I’m in…except that we don’t have kids yet! Haha. So it’s basically my packed lunch and my husband’s :) That okay?

    Plus, that lunch box is pretty nifty. I’m ditching mine haha 😀

    • Emma, I think that is the best idea! Totally valid…as long as you make the effort to pack a lunch for yourself or someone else then you must join us. Any plans for what you are packing for Monday’s lunch?? A nifty new lunch box could inspire very great things 😉

    • Betty no matter who you pack lunch for, healthy meals from home are always best. So glad to hear that you take the time to do that for yourself. You would love these lunch boxes!

  34. What a great Idea! I can’t wait to go through submissions to get lunch Ideas! We love chicken and capers here so I also can’t wait to try out your pasta recipe with that!

  35. this is awesome! just what i need. my son eat lunch at school 5 days a week, i eat lunch at work 2 days a week. I love the section container!
    Katie

  36. This is great! My kids are homeschooled so not a problem for them, but my husband and I are really bad about packing our lunches for work! I work in a hospital so it’s very easy for me to just go down to the cafeteria and eat crap all day. I’m going to use your challenge and pack lunches for my husband and myself. It’s also a good idea for when we take the kids out to do fun stuff, instead of wasting money eating out.

  37. I would love a set of Easy Lunchboxes because I am in the process of changing the way that my family eats and I love the idea of having simple meals and snacks on hand at all times. Plus I work full-time so they would be perfect to bring to work.

  38. I would *love* to win this giveaway! I pack lunch for both me & my kiddo. I’m recently diagnosed w/many food “sensitivities” – no gluten, no dairy – and my kiddo has nut allergies. It has made life more challenging! Lots of searching through many “real” food blogs! I’m glad I found yours.

  39. I want Easy Lunchbox in my life because of the healthy nutritional value as well as the benefits to my family’s budget.
    (P.S. If by chance I happen to be one of the lucky winners, may I have a few extra days to respond? I will be entering the hospital on 9.22 for surgery so I wouldn’t want to miss out by not responding in the 3 day time limit. :)

  40. I try to pack healthy lunches for my 3 kids everyday. I manage at least 3 out of 5 of the days! This year I’ve alos been trying to pack everything into reusable containters too. It cuts down on waste and I think it also keeps the lunch fresher

  41. My favorite thing to pack in a lunch box is a sandwich alternative (maybe veggies in a pita with hummus) and some fresh fruit when in season.

  42. This is my second school year making bentos for my toddler. I started last year because she is such a picky eater. I love making bentos and she loves eating them. My favorite this to include in Bella’s Bentos are eggs shaped in different shapes using molds I got from a bento supply company. LOVE BENTOS

  43. I love packing lunch and since I get up early, I also pack breakfast! Nothing processed, yogurt and homemade (made in a batch) oatmeal with yogurt, a healthy salad for lunch with a side of fruit and for mid morning snack, homemade hummus with veggies. Yum! I don’t have kids, unless you call my husband a kid and I pack him PB&J sandwich or wrap with fruit.

    • Hi Marla,

      I’m new to Word Press and for the life of me, i don’t know how to add your badge. I’ve been trying for an hour and I’m frustrated. I did figure out how to add fellow bloggers, so I added you to my front page, so when you hover over your name, it will say Project Lunch Box, and you can click the link and come to your page. I’m sorry, I’ll keep trying.

  44. This is so great Marla. I am new to packing lunches for my daughter this year, and our current favorite is to make homemade soup and send it hot in a thermos. The flavors of choice right now? Tomato basil and alphabet soup!

  45. Simple reason for wanting these is that I don’t currently have a good lunchbox system (minus using random containers from the cabinet).

  46. I’m there in spirit – I have started getting the kids school lunches – they switched the company that is supplying this year and they claim to use healthy organic produce – so far so good – you know how much I stressed over packing the daily lunch box!!!

  47. I’d love to have a set – no kids yet, but I always pack a lunch for my husband, and without coordinating containers it’s hard to fit it all in his lunch box.

  48. My favorite things to pack in lunch box are berries. They stay nice and fresh and I don’t have to cut them ahead so the nutrients stay in-tack. :)

    amy [at] utry [dot] it

  49. I seriously need to eat healthier. I’m often running out the door in the mornings without much time to make a lunch for work and end up getting fast food or whatever the vending machine offers. They separate comments are good.

    • Sara, sounds like the lunch box habit might become a great idea :) Packing lunch in the morning is way to tricky with the early rush out the door. Perhaps you can try packing breakfast & lunch the night before. If you want any ideas for either just give a shout.

  50. **I’m not sure if I’m supposed to be doing each of these additional entries separately, so if they’re supposed to be all in one…I’m so sorry!**

    I submitted my blog above! It’s a really tasty farmer’s market salad!

    (thelittlebite)

  51. I would love this lunchbox b/c my hubby goes to work for 10 hrs a day and never eats anything….the whole time! It’s just not convenient for him t take a lunch and he doesn’t…so if I packed one maybe he’d eat.

    • Haley: 10 hours! That is tough. He much be starving when he gets home….I eat every 2-3 hours. After 4 I cannot even think straight. Conditioning I guess to go the 10. Sounds like packing a lunch for your hubs would be a fantastic idea.

  52. My fave lunch is a grilled chicken salad w/ lettuce, tomatoes, grilled chicken, croutons, and sunflower seeds…easy to throw together and yummy!

  53. I pack my lunch every day for work. I feel good about it because I always know I will pack myself a nutritious lunch with healthy ingredients and never have to resort to fast food. This lunchbox would be perfect to help me keep everything together but separate in one convenient container. My favorite lunch usually involves a turkey or roast beef sandwich with tomato on whole grain bread with a splash of Dijon mustard. Grapes, strawberries, or plums are my most frequent accompaniments.

    • Go Meghan! So glad to hear that you pack yourself nutritious lunches :) The little separate bento component is a bonus to these lunch boxes! Love your favorite sandwich too.

    • Carrie, not only do the bento boxes hold quite a bit but there is lots of extra room for so much more in the cooler bag too :) So glad to hear you pack meals for your hubs and daughter. Thanks for adding the PLB badge to your sidebar.

  54. My son just started Weekday Preschool at our church and my favorite thing to pack in his lunchbox is FRUITS!! Not only does he LOVE every fruit out there, but they are easy to pack! I think Blueberries are his #1 though!

  55. I added my sunbutter chocolate chip cookies! Because I don’t take a lunch, I usually eat at home, but my kids do and this was a “sweet” treat that was healthy and nut free.

  56. I have a my first elementary student, and another following closely behind! I see myself packing many lunches in our future! School lunches just don’t cut it! I try to keep things fresh and varied, so an Easy Lunchbox would be perfect!

  57. I make 2-3 lunches a day, for the husband and children, depending whether it is pizza day at school or not. I would love an easier way… I have several small containers and baggies per lunch box. I’ll be watching through your challenge for new ideas. I am known by the kids’ friends for making the best mama-made lunches around, but it never hurts to up the ante. 😉

  58. Currently I pack lunches every day for both of my boys (age 5 and 2). They usually consist of a sandwich, fruit slices, crackers and water or juice. I am enjoying reading all of the wonderful ideas others are posting. My goal is to make healthier lunches for them with some variety!

  59. This is my first full time semester in college. I am on campus 4 days a week and 3 of those My husband and I are both there for 7 & 1/2 hours. I pack lunch for both of us in effort to keep us eating healthier and save money. It would be great to have an additional bag (we share one right now) so I could separate our food. Also, I love that you allow other bloggers to post links for lunch ideas! It’s a great way for us to find even more recipes and tips to make life a little easier! Thanks, Marla!

  60. Some of our standard lunches and snacks are sandwiches, fruit, cliff bars, and yogurt. I’ve picked up a thermos container recently and have been packing soup and crackers. Today I packed an asian chicken pasta salad with lots of veggies (starting to get tired of the standards)…can’t wait for lunch!

  61. I need these containers because I pack four lunches and four snacks a day. We need something more simple like the containers where I can get a full lunch into one cnotainer.

  62. I would love these containers for when we have all day sports events or are traveling. To know I can hand each child (we have four!) their box and it has everything for their lunch would be great!!!

  63. My 6 year old twin boys have just started 1st grade and I have been having a blast packing them FUN, Healthy snacks and lunches! These easy lunchboxes would make them even more FUN and allow more variety with less “Trash” at the end of the day!

  64. Lunches for my little girl (age 4) are often times so challenging! She goes to a “meat free/kosher” preschool and I am always looking for suggestions and alternatives. I love your idea above of the frittata. Never thought of that. I really like packing her fruits, veggies, a “dip”, beans, homemade granola bars, etc. Loving your blog! Thank you!

  65. I’d love to win the lunchbox set and change things up and be more green for my 5 yr old who we need to pack a lunch for M-F! Love your blog!

  66. My favorite thing to pack for lunch these days is lime and garlic grilled fish filet, crisp greens, avocado, and salsa in a whole wheat tortilla or pita bread.

  67. I love using EasyLunchboxes to make my daughter’s lunches. She is 5 and gets to choose & make her lunches with me. I am very lucky that I was referred to EL by a friend. I would love to win the containers to pass along to a friend to introduce her child to the fun of making / bringing lunches!
    Thanks!

  68. My daughter’s favorite lunch right now is cheese & carmelized onion quesadillas (sp?) with edamame and fresh fruit as her “sides”. She is currently in a blackberry phase.

  69. I would love to have an easy lunchabox in my life because I hate using plastic bags and three different containers don’t fit into my kids lunchaboxes. I have been searching for a container with three individual sections that seal, but it is realy difficult to find.
    aprilkek at verizon dot net

  70. I want the easy lunch boxes in my life so I can provide better, healthier lunches for my family. These lunch boxes help to remember to provide a variety of healthy food and portion control! Thanks for this opportunity!

  71. My daughter and I are gluten-free, so I would love to have an Easy Lunchbox to help organize the food I am always taking with us somewhere.

  72. We’ve been using Bento style lunchboxes for our daughter who has a latex based allergy. She only wants to buy lunch at school but, we realize that we cannot completely determine the cross over of latex when we do not know where the food has come from. Packing her lunch gives us more control. We are always looking for new items to add to her collection so she has something to look forward to when everyone else has school lunch. May not sound like much but, it sure is to someone who is in Kindergarten!

  73. I think an easy lunchbox will make things so much easier once I go back to work in Nov. My older son will need a lunch to take to the babysitter and having 1 container to hold everything will make things easier for him and the sitter.

  74. My son likes meals that he can assemble himself. He loves spreading stuff on tortillas, making sandwiches with crackers and cheese, mixing fruit into a yogurt.

  75. Currently my favorite lunchbox item is homemade go-gurt tubes. I picked up silicone yogurt tubes from Amazon and fill the with my homemade yogurt. My kids are the envy of their classmates!

  76. Up until 2 weeks ago, I was eating Lean Cuisines every day at work for my lunch. Finally, one day, I realized that the flavor and textures were literally making me gag, and I vowed to devote time to packing a real lunch every day.

    Over the past 2 weeks, I have searched and searched again for lunchtime recipes and cookbooks and, I have to tell you, the searches have come up almost dry. Almost every lunch cookbook is geared toward children’s lunchboxes. I don’t have children; I am still young and I want lunch time meals that I can assemble using the microwave or the toaster oven. I am a gourmet breakfast and dinner cook, but lunch has been a challenge.

    I’ve begun making “grilled” cheese and tomato soup at work (toast the bread and quickly sandwich the cheese in there so that it melts (I use havarti). I also made chicken salad this week, which was a success, and, today, I am eating my most ambitious lunch time meal to date: A fall salad with gorgonzola, walnuts, homemade red wine vinaigrette, prosciutto, apples, and dried cranberries, which I assembled at work. It’s fantastic! I don’t think I will ever be able to go back to frozen lunches.

    I am very happy to see this challenge and I think it’s going to be an easy one for me! I’m excited to see what recipes get posted as I will need some for when I run out of my own ideas!

    Thanks!

    • Shelley, thanks for your awesome comment. I agree, so much lunch box stuff is geared towards children. I pack my own lunch…so I am an advocate of what goes in everyone’s LB. At the office & every work place people should know what to pack for themselves. Do take the opportunity to browse around my blog….I hope you find lots of recipes you love :)

  77. I have just started working at a school and I supervise kindergarteners eating their lunches….I am amazed at what is packed in their lunches boxes AMAZED!!!

  78. I pack my grandson’s lunch in a planetbox every day. (planetbox.com). You simply CANNOT put unhealthy stuff in there! Can’t really explain it…it just IS that way. I can’t even make his pb&j on white bread and put it in there (much to his chagrin). I highly recommend a planetbox—for your child and our environment.

    • Thanks for the great idea Jen! Awesome that you pack such a great lunch box for your grandson each and every day. Such a wonderful way to show your love for him :)

  79. […] Fresh Cooking: Project Lunch Box 30 Day Challenge (another lunch challenge for those who want to keep the momentum […]

  80. Hi! I am a Filipino working girl in Singapore, and i stumbled through this challenge via Pinterest. Although the challenge is mostly for moms to prepare their children’s lunchboxes, I think working folks can also apply to this project.
    And even though the project is already over, I am starting it for myself and will document it on my blog.
    Thanks for the idea! I think it’ll be a good way for me to get on the road to healthy eating, even if I am busy with work.
    I will let you know how it goes for me, and from time to time, will take a look at the various meal ideas posted in your site and on other sites linked here.

    Thanks! :)

    • I have some Ziplock versions that I purchased at Target but these are Easy Lunch Boxes. I believe there is a link at the top. I also have a few Tupperware with compartments, they should add more for new year.

  81. Love this idea. We do not leave the house much during lunch hour but having healthy lunch ideas is always a good thing. Sometimes we pack lunches for picnic in the living room.

  82. As a teacher I pack my lunch every day and always look for new ideas. I am going back to work tomorrow from vacation and am currently making an orzo salad for the three days I am back. I cook up orzo, drain it, rinse it and then cut up red onion, pepper (any color I have on hand), add in cherry tomatoes and a can of olives. I also cut up fresh mozzarella or feta. The dressing is 2-3 fresh squeezed lemons (zest first). Then some EVOO, sea salt, lots of black pepper, garlic and lemon zest. If I have fresh Italian parsley I chop that into it also. Keeps for days and is yummier as the days go on.

    • Hi Michelle! Thanks so much for sharing your favorite lunch time orzo pasta salad. I love the tangy lemon/olive/feta combo. You are so right how much better it tastes after the flavors have a chance to marry a bit. Awesome that you pack such a healthy lunch!

  83. […] Project Lunch Box Pin it Tweet (function() { var po = document.createElement(‘script’); po.type = ‘text/javascript’; po.async = true; po.src = ‘https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(po, s); })(); (function() { var li = document.createElement(‘script’); li.type = ‘text/javascript’; li.async = true; li.src = ‘https://platform.stumbleupon.com/1/widgets.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(li, s); })(); (function() { var s = document.createElement(‘SCRIPT’), s1 = document.getElementsByTagName(‘SCRIPT’)[0]; s.type = ‘text/javascript’; s.async = true; s.src = ‘http://widgets.digg.com/buttons.js’; s1.parentNode.insertBefore(s, s1); })(); ‹ Previous Next › […]

  84. Where did you get the lunch boxes? I love that they have the separate spots without having to pack tons of containers or waste plastic bags!

  85. […] Project Lunch Box Tweet (function() { var po = document.createElement(‘script’); po.type = ‘text/javascript’; po.async = true; po.src = ‘https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(po, s); })(); (function() { var li = document.createElement(‘script’); li.type = ‘text/javascript’; li.async = true; li.src = ‘https://platform.stumbleupon.com/1/widgets.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(li, s); })(); (function() { var s = document.createElement(‘SCRIPT’), s1 = document.getElementsByTagName(‘SCRIPT’)[0]; s.type = ‘text/javascript’; s.async = true; s.src = ‘http://widgets.digg.com/buttons.js’; s1.parentNode.insertBefore(s, s1); })(); ‹ Previous Next › […]

  86. I wanted you to know I love your blog, out of all of them so far yours has been the cutest you got alot of good ideas gotta do some for my hubby for his lunch he will probably never want to open his lunchbox at work ever after this lol

  87. I absolutely love this idea, it used to take me about two hours each night to sit and pack a lunch for myself. I just recently got my boyfriend into taking lunches with him instead of going out to eat everyday.
    My only question is, where do you get your Tupperware???? I love that you can fit everything all in one container instead of having to use 3-4 different Tupperware. That’s usually my biggest problem.

  88. Such a great idea for people who are lacking inspiration. Although we just take what’s left over from dinner the night before, I make sure there is enough for Hubby to take the left overs to work.
    I expect when our kids are at school a list like this would come in handy as there are only so many combinations of sandwiches you can make for them before it gets very boring.

    • True Kate, things tend to get old quick when you pack so many lunches 5 days a week. Best of luck to you when the time comes for packing multiple lunch boxes! be sure to check back in :)

  89. […] Frittatas have saved my dinner-cooking behind at the eleventh hour more times than I can count. They are so easy to make and very flexible – you can throw anything in it, from veggies to meats and cheese. And best of all, it’s good hot or cold – sort of like pizza. Make one for dinner and the next day, take a wedge to work in a Bento box along with a couple slices of fruit. {image & recipe via: Family Fresh Cooking} […]

    • Hi Monica, you can put that item in a heat proof silicone cup. Usually we just eat our lunch boxes not heated…but heat can be much better for some recipes for sure!

  90. Awesome idea! Question: what kind of pretzels are pictured? Might be nice to have an idea of the kind that would be best to buy when I need a crunchy snack. Thanks!

  91. This is a great idea! My problem is snacking, I eat very healthy, I just Eat too much. I make all my meals from scratch, unless it is a really special occasion, and I pack my fiance a lunch almost everyday. Even if I don’t eat on the go, and I am just at home, I think having something already made in the fridge, portioned out, will help.

  92. Hi Marla,
    Thank you for such wonderful lunch box ideas. I always worry that about one month into the school year that the children are bored with their lunches. This is so refreshing!!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Melanie :)

  93. Thanks for the great lunch ideas. I am a teacher and a mother. After a decade of teaching I am still surprised with the amount of junk in my students lunches. We don’t have a lunch program so parents send packed lunches. Even though the lunches come from home they contain a ton of prepackaged products. I am going to put a link to you site in my newsletter and maybe some parents will change what they pack in their childs lunch. My little one begins full day kindergarten this year. So I am looking for some creative and healthy ideas to fill her small tummy. Thanks

    • Hi Sue! Thanks for your comment. I am so surprised what ends un in kids lunches (even when packed at home) as well. Craaaazy! Hopefully with some helpful tips and motivation we can help people make better choices!

  94. Hi Marla, I fully support your lunch box project. I pack my kids lunches from scratch every morning. They are both in High School and it is maybe not “as cool” as buying something at the cafeteria. I allow it once a week and only my daughter takes use of this offer. My son isn’t even interested. He likes his packed lunch better. And I agree, sometimes it is very challenging to come up with new ideas they like to eat.
    I linked one of my kids school snack recipes back to your project. Crunchy Ramen School Snack. Here is the link:
    http://www.mykitchenintherockies.com/2012/08/12/crunchy-ramen-school-snack/

  95. I LOVE this idea! I was wondering where you got the container from, i’ve never seen one with the 3 compartments before. :)

  96. Great ideas, just a bit weird that one of the photos has pretzel chips from a bag, and bread which has refined sugar and processed flour in it… just sayin.

  97. I feel so out of the loop, just finding you now! This is EXACTLY what I have been looking for. We have a 16 month old and another one on the way, and I am constantly asking myself, “What’s for lunch?” This is just fabulous. Thank you!!

  98. Hi Marla! I have an 8 month old I pack lunches for. The daycare has not been very supportive of his homemade food. I’m going to try doing more balanced pretty seasonal meals like yours. Maybe that will get them on board.

  99. Some lunch ideas:
    Mini Meatballs (Bake in the morning while kids are having breakfast-pack in thermos) with a side of marinara
    Mini baked ravioli
    Cilantro lime rice (Like Qdoba or Chipotle)
    Taps-Pepperoni slices (Turkey), Olives, Cheese, Cucumbers, mini breadsticks
    Fried Rice
    Wraps
    Salad
    Yes, my kids east all of these.

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