Fun, Creative and Healthy Lunch Ideas

Bored of the same old lunches? These healthy and creative back to school lunch ideas are sure to get you out of your lunch rut! I hate to break it to you, but summer does have an end. While it’s always sad to say goodbye to the warm weather it’s also a great change of pace and isn’t fall the best season anyway? Back to school season can be so fun, so we’ve put together some of our favorite school lunch ideas to get you fired up.


Wraps are a classic go-to school lunch item. They’re quick to make, store well, and have so many options. They’re basically a portable edible canvas. While the possibilities really are endless, we’ve put a few of our favorites here.


  • Ok this is a long one, stay with me here: Zucchini Noodles Blueberry Basil Wrap with Honey Lime Yogurt. This recipe from Food Faith Fitness might be more geared to your sophisticated students, but doesn’t it sound so yummy? I couldn’t bear to leave it off the list.
  • When you get a copy cat starbucks recipe, it’s sure to be good. This Spinach and Feta wrap from The Big Man’s World looks like a beauty, and like it will make everyone happy.
  • If you want to try and hang on to summer just a little bit longer, try these Hawaiian Tortilla Roll Ups from the Pinning Momma. Pineapple is one of the best ways to spice an otherwise boring school lunch!
  • Italiano! I love me a good Italian inspired wrap. These Italian Sandwich Roll Ups from Happy Go Lucky look like everything good about Italian wraps.
  • I’m not the only one who loves Apple and Peanut butter together right? If you haven’t tried it, you need to. I think a great way to start is with this Granola Crunch Apple-Peanut Butter Wrap from Two Healthy Kitchens.
  • This next wrap is called the Notorious B.R.I.E. Because brie is one of God’s greatest gifts. This wrap has brie (of course) apples, turkey, spinach and honey mustard. My mouth is already watering. Thanks Delish. School lunch will never be the same.

Side Snacks

Sometimes the best school lunches are the ones with fun little side dishes.

School Lunch a-c-graham-crackers

  • These Apple Cinnamon Graham Crackers from Well Floured look amazing! Doesn’t that just sound like back to school?
  • These Cream Cheese and Jam Cracker Snacks look so salty sweet delicious! Am I the only one who is dying to try these with a jalapeno jelly? But I’m pretty sure no matter what Jam you use with this recipe from Make and Takes would be delicious.
  • Coconut Snowballs. Doesnt that sound like something you want to be a part of? These bliss balls from The Kitchn look amazingly delicious, and only have a  bit of maple syrup to sweeten them up!
  • I’m dying to try these Stuffed Baby Peppers from Ditch the Carbs. Guess what? no carbs. But heaps of delicious flavor. Cream cheese and peppers is a combo that just won’t quit.

Healthy Lunch Ideas

Healthy food for a healthy brain right? Sometimes it can be tough to get away from the your standard bag of chips and hostess cupcake rut. Here are a few easy ideas to make sure all those nutrients a learning brain needs is in that school lunch box.

School Lunch baked-bananas-chips

  • Want something sweet and crunchy but still good for your little student? Take a gander at this recipe for Homemade Baked Banana Chips from Diethood. Guess what’s in this recipe. Banana and lemon juice. That’s it. How amazing does that sound?
  • I’m sure the last thing I expected to see on this part of the round up is this recipe: Chocolate Brownie Energy Bites. But guess what? They’re super healthy. No Sugar. Their simple sweetness comes from raisins. How genius! Thanks Momables.
  • I know we already did the dried fruit thing, but you can’t leave out the Cinnamon Apple Chips!! This recipe from Carrie’s Experimental Kitchen does use 1 or 2 teaspoons of sugar, but I won’t tell if you won’t.
  • How cool would a Bell Pepper Pizza be in your school lunch? I love this idea from Peas and Crayons. Sounds like a great way to add a serving of vegetables to lunchtime.

Sweet Treats

If you don’t need something sweet to finish off your school lunch then I don’t know if we can be friends. And guess what? It doesn’t necessarily have to be bad for you. We’ve found a bunch of great ideas to go into a lunch box.

School Lunch raspberry-oatmeal-cookies_8209

  • Family of Seven has given us a great one. These Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars have every thing. They’re easy, only three ingredients, and it would be so easy to make a pan Sunday evening and parcel them out through the week, even for a quick breakfast on the go!
  • Chocolate Dipped Oranges from Momables sound like everything I want from a school lunch. Easy, classic flavor combo that will make every one happy. You can even make it a bit healthier by going for a dark chocolate. That makes it healthier right? That’s what I tell myself.
  • Momables has done it again. How does this strike you, Cookie Dough Yogurt Parfaits.  Oh em gee they look so easy to make, super healthy and I’m sure delicious. Lunch won’t even know what hit it.
  • These Raspberry Oatmeal Cookies from Amy’s Healthy Baking look absolutely gorgeous. The little pink bits make them look so pretty, I can’t imagine a better way to finish off a school lunch.

Non Sandwiches

Sandwiches are classics of course, but they can get real old real fast. So we’ve found a few cool alternatives for you to mix up your traditional school lunch just a bit. School Lunch-tailgating-taco-salad-delish

  • How cool do these Healthy Chickpea Lettuce Wraps from Show Me the Yummy sound? a great no meat option that is healthy, quick, and sure to be delicious.
  • This 5 min Spicy Asian Chicken Salad from Linda Wagner sounds so fun! You might need to tone down the spiciness depending on how much your school goer likes, but it’s packed with delicious veggies and would be great in any school lunch.
  • Jar lunches are so fun! it’s a great way to store a delicious meal that you might not be able to enjoy otherwise. Plus, they look so pretty. I’m dying to try this Taco Salad in a Jar from Delish, especially if I make them the day after making tacos for dinner. Two for one!!
  • Imagine pulling a Peanut Butter and Jelly Taco out of your lunch. How cool is that? This recipe from Home Made Interest technically has all the same things as your classic PB&J, but in a much cooler package. If you want to break the sandwich rut for a picky eater, this is the way to go.
  • This Zucchini Slice from My Kids Lick the Bowl looks so cool! It’s basically a quiche but easier to store. Lots of protein, and lots of veggies.
  • I never would have thought that Veggie Nuggets would be something to put in a school lunch, but this recipe from Momables actually looks delicious! Add a little ketchup on the side and any kid would be happy with this one.

Make Ahead

Sometimes the best lunch, is one you dont have to make at 7:30 in the morning while wrestling kids and trying to get everyone out the door. These ideas are the best because you can make them ahead of time, then chuck them in a bag when it’s go time.


  • We love our Bento Box Lunch idea. It’s so simple, but makes lunch prep easy, and makes it convenient to add things like fruits and veggies to your normal school lunch.
  • The uncrustable will always be a classic, but they can get expensive, and are not super great for you or your littles. With this DIY Freezer Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches, you can customize to your hearts content! The Crafting Chicks have given us the chance to go classic white bread and grape jelly and peanut butter, or you can choose a quinoa wheat bread with almond butter and no sugar jam! The possibilities are endless.
  • I never would have thought of freezing spaghetti, but now that I’ve seen Spaghetti Freezer Muffins from Dr Oz, I can’t believe I haven’t been doing this all along. Its a great way to fill out a lunch in a flash. And ever so customizable.
  • These Hot Dog Corn Bread Muffins are an easier version of mini corn dogs to make ahead of time and then stick in the freezer for when you need them. And this recipe from The Food Charlatan uses yogurt in the cornbread!

Think Outside the Lunch Box

Let’s be real, school can be tough. So having something fun, creative, and edible in your school lunch to break up the day can make all the difference! Maybe we’re not ambitious enough to make these every day, but it can a fun way to break up the routine for a few special occasions.

school lunch cucumber-sushi-for-kids

  • Ok, this first one is not edible, but we can’t resist our Lunch Box Jokes, you have got to read these. Plus this creative extra takes little effort and is a great way to get your little school goer to smile.
  • This one blew my mind: Build Your Own Sushi Roll. You’ll be the coolest kid in the cafeteria if this is in your lunch. Belly Full has made this cool idea so attainable.
  • While we’re being asian-inspired, how cool would it be to get a home made Fortune Cookie in your lunch? I love this idea from A Baker’s House.
  • I’m in no way endorsing every lunch box be picture perfect, but you have to admit it’s kind of fun sometimes. You need to take a look at Mom Endeavors cute Disney Bento Lunch Ideas. They’re pretty amazing, and would be so fun to try and recreate.
  • I love this idea of Cucumber Sushi from Raising Whasians. And for how pretty it is, it’s surprisingly a simple recipe! I’ll definitely have to give this one a go.

Back to school can be a hectic time, so having some fun ideas to try in your school lunches can be a great way to spice things up and get everyone excited about getting back into the routine again. What’s your favorite thing to put in a school lunch? Any tips or tricks you have to pack healthy lunches and actually get your kids to eat them? We’d love to hear!




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