1. Think REUSABLE, not DISPOSABLE!!!
I did a cost comparison of a few popular lunch box items…prepacked vs. make and pack yourself. And “REUSABLE” saves…not only waste, but money as well!
- Carrots: 1 lb. bag of baby carrots $1.77 vs. 1 lb. bag of whole carrots $.67 – Take 3 minutes to peel and cut yourself. $1 a week = $36 savings on the year!
- Raisins: Large 15 oz. box of raisins $2.49 vs. 7 oz. of smaller mini boxes $1.99 – Divide out raisins into small containers instead of sending the little boxes. $1 a week = $36
- Jello (sugar-free): $.72 for make your own jello vs. $1.89 for jello cups – Make a large bowl and then divide it out into smaller containers.
- Cheese Cubes: 16 oz. cheese block $2.99 vs. 7 oz. prepacked cut cheese $2.50 – Per ounce, you could save $2 a week by buying a large block and cutting your own cheese cubes!
- This principle applies to all prepackaged “convenience” foods!
2. Spend 15-20 minutes on a Sunday night making jello, cutting carrots and cheese cubes, and dividing up raisins. If you could save $2 PER LUNCHBOX PER DAY by doing a little legwork yourself each week, you could save over $350 PER LUNCHBOX this school year! If you pack more than 1 lunch, there is potential for saving LOTS of $$$!
3. Give your kids a choice about what they want in their lunch. Offer grapes, raisins or blueberries. Don’t say “What do you want?” Because they’ll likely ask for a sugar laden snack!
4. Wrap your small blue ice pack in a small kitchen towel to keep the “thawing condensation” from making a mess in the lunchbox.
5. Keep sugar content LOW. Bake your own muffins vs. sending a “high fructose corn syrup” snack. Your teacher will thank you!
6. Of course, use coupons and watch sales.
7. And don’t forget a sweet note of adoration every few days!
Have any favorite lunch packing tips or tricks??? Do share!!!
Happy Back to School Lunch Making!!!
Photo Credit: ficbot