Last year was our first year of elementary school, so I had to come up with a system for packing school lunches. And because of food allergies we’re taking lunch pretty much every day. My system worked shockingly well- mostly I was surprised that I stuck with it. It made lunch-packing so simple! I’m going to show you how I did it and how you can create your own school lunch-prep station to streamline mornings and make life so much simpler!
I’m setting up a two-part system. The first part is for me because I like to pack the cold portion of the lunches for a few days all at once. The second part is for B to pack her lunchbox in the morning.
First, the Cold Lunch Prep Station.
This is in an upper kitchen cabinet. I chose a shallow bin because I want to be able to take things out easily. I found this one at Target this week. It came with two smaller containers- you’ll see them in the next section.
Here’s what’s in my lunch-packing station:
- bento containers & lids
- you might add Zip-lock bags too.
I found these awesome inexpensive bento containers on amazon last year. I run them through the dishwasher (bottom rack!) and they have held up great! I ordered a second set so I would have enough for a whole week’s worth of lunches. The only one that didn’t survive was because the dog got into someone’s lunchbox… and the lunchbox didn’t make it either.
What I love about these is that I can pack a few lunches and stack them in the fridge… then it’s just a matter of pulling one out and putting it in the lunchbox in the morning.
Next the Lunchbox-Filling Station
This year, my goal is for B to pack her lunch box and backpack herself, so I’ve planned a lunchbox-packing station down low in the pantry where she can easily get to it. You can check out the rest of my pantry organization project HERE.
Here’s what’s in it:
- lunch boxes
- plastic spoons & forks (I’m using the IKEA ones we still have from when the girls were younger)
- applesauce cups
- juice boxes
- packaged snacks
- sauce packets (I like to save them when we eat fast food)
- water bottles
And then one final thing to add… an ice pack!
I found these awesome flat ice packs at amazon last year, and again they’ve held up great and we’ll use them again this year. They’re bright colored and fun, and they all fit easily into the door of the freezer. Grab & go.
I hope this makes your school lunch-packing easier! I know having a great system has helped me a ton! These are my favorite lunch products:
Need more back to school inspiration? Check out this post: