Skip Nav

School Lunch Tips

8 Helpful Hints For Packing the Best Brown-Bag Lunch

Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Them Too

It's hard to believe that many schools are starting back up in just a few short weeks. Although schedules will be more hectic, don't skip packing lunch! Instead, take the time each evening or morning to put together a healthy and appetizing lunch for yourself or your kids (if you have them). Here are some helpful hints for packing the best brown bag.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Sarah Lipoff

Be creative! Try not to make the same thing every day. If you have a sandwich on Monday, bring a salad on Tuesday or combine the two and make a wrap. Variety is the key to not getting stuck in a peanut-butter-and-jelly rut.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Nicole Perry

Skip the processed foods (like single-serving packs of chips) and opt for fresh ingredients when it comes to the snacks, like chopped fruit in a mason jar, vegetable sticks with hummus, and cheese.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Nicole Perry

Nuts (or trail mix) and popcorn are great for snacking.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Nicole Perry

Avoid sogginess by packing food items in different containers or by perfectly layering the ingredients of a salad inside a mason jar. Mason jars (unlike Tupperware) are easier to transport in your bag and won't leak.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Camila Salem

Make sandwiches more exciting with interesting condiments. Rather than using the standard mustard and mayo, slather on pesto or tapenade.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Camila Salem

Turn last night's leftovers into lunch or a whole new dish. If you had steak and potatoes for dinner, throw slices of steak and chopped potato into a pita with mint, tomatoes, and store-bought hummus. Have chicken and veggies? Toss leftover chicken and veggies with cooked pasta, herbs, and crumbly cheese to make a hearty pasta salad.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Nicole Perry

Don't forget dessert. It's nice to finish lunch with a little something sweet. A piece of chocolate or a cookie bar are delightful ideas.

When all else fails, avocado toast guarantees a happy lunch.

— Additional reporting by Katie Sweeney

Latest Food
Looking for the perfect gift this holiday season? Order our POPSUGAR Must Have box now >>