Non-sandwich lunch ideas for 4yo(41 Posts)
DD2 isn't particularly fond of bread. And I was getting very tired of making sandwiches for her only to have them come back with a tiny nibble in one corner.
So a few weeks ago I gave her a few pieces of chicken and two crackers. Instant success. She now eats most of her lunch.
Except. I don't know what else to do. I know if I keep giving her chicken and crackers she will get bored of it, and stop eating it. She's allergic to dairy and egg, and won't eat sliced ham (I'm doing a big cooked Christmas style ham this weekend, and hopefully she might eat some of that).
But I need some other ideas. At the moment it isn't too much of a concern as she is at montessori, so as well as their packed lunch, they are given a snack later provided by the school, so I know she doesn't go hungry. I'm a bit more concerned about having a range of options in time for school starting next year as there won't be anything extra provided if she decides she's not eating what I send in.
and of course now DD1 who hasn't met a food she won't try, and is quite happy with sandwiches, and has no allergies, is feeling hard done by that DD2 is getting special treatment
Pasta salad or crudities and dip are the first things I can think of. Will she eats wraps or Pitta bread at all as a sandwich alternative?
She ate wraps as a novelty for about a week. The same with certain small soft bread rolls. But now I get them back in the same state as the sandwiches - little nibble from the corner and the filling taken out.
I thought about pasta salad, but I felt it needed mayonnaise (and egg and dairy free mayonnaise is vile) and would be a bit messy. Plus, I can see her just eating the pasta parts and leaving anything else that I give her.
What do you have for lunch? Can she have the same as you?
I either run to my local sandwich bar and get something or have a vile cup a soup from my desk drawer - about an hour's journey away, so not really able to share I'm at work at that stage of the day, and she's at pre-school.
She's not bad at eating "proper food" at mealtimes, although the allergies do complicate matters a bit. It's the packed lunch for school that's the problem.
Could you make a nice pesto sauce (minus the parmesan) for the pasta? Add spinach to make it healthier or mashed up broccoli? You can make it quite dry so there is more pasta than sauce!
Homemade fish fingers/chicken nuggets (just roll the fish/chicken pieces in flour) and fry in oil. Serve with potato wedges/sweet potato 'chips'.
Mini meatballs/burgers. Annabel Karmel has some nice finger food recipes (but they are bit of a faff to make - you can make enough to freeze though).
Sorry just realised you are asking for packed lunch recipes so the meat options I gave you would have to be eaten cold.
If she's eating the filling and leaving the carb part, could you just give her the fillings?
Would she eat bread sticks and dips?
What about pasta or rice in a tomato sauce or non dairy 'cheese' sauce?
Non dairy 'cheese' on crackers?
Or you could make your own egg free mayonnaise.
Pasta, tuna and peas is my dairy free ds' favourite. Also pate on crackers, peanut butter on two oatcakes sandwiches together. Carrot sticks, cucumber sticks and hummus. Breadsticks and hummus. Chunky minestrone soup in a little thermos snack cup.
What abou sushi? My daughter doesn't really like bread either but sushi is always a lunch time winner.
I'm the same.
I hate bread and always have
Quiche , sushi, fish sticks, my favourite when I was little was instead of bread mum used to put sandwich fillings e.g tuna, ham coleslaw wrapped in lettuce. I still take that too lunch to work now. Especially egg mayo in lettuce I love it!
Hmm tricky. To an extent I wouldn't worry about making things she may leave, that's part of them learning new things to eat. Also if she likes chicken and crackers, I don't see the harm in her having that or a variation of the theme frequently. My dd would have pasta every day if she could, so she does have it often.
Tuna on crackers, chicken on crackers, roast ham on crackers etc etc ...
Or you could make your own egg free mayonnaise.
Life is honestly way too short to make my own mayonnaise (I work full time, make almost all meals from scratch due to the allergies and am often found at midnight making rice for the childminder to heat up the following day). Whereas it's a good idea in theory, I can't see it fitting into my day
I might try the sushi idea at the weekend to see will she eat it - she certainly has done before, but it's hard to know with her (although, again, there's quite a bit of faff involved there).
Re the "why not just give her the fillings" I suppose the problem is that the fillings I gave her when I was doing sandwiches were ham (which she now won't eat), chicken (which she has every day now) or jam.
Will try her on a few pates and see how they go down.
Soup is a no-go at the moment due to the timings for snacks, but maybe next year. I'll have to ask DD1 whether many students at her school take thermos flasks of soup in (I know they only get a very small amount of time for eating lunch, so it may not be feasible either).
She already gets hummous and crudités/breadsticks as the snack I send to the childminder, but I could put it in her lunch box sometimes too.
Sorry I just thought I'd mention it incase you hadn't thought of it and wanted to. It doesn't take long And keeps well in the fridge. I make some for DT1 who has multiple allergies. You can get some bought ones too but he doesn't like the couple we've tried.
Life is honestly way too short to make my own mayonnaise
You can buy
vile Plamil vegan Mayo from Holland and Barrett. The Granovita vegan Mayo is quite nice and you can buy it from Amazon.
humous and veg sticks, any sort of buffet style food she will eat/can eat. Warm beans or spag hoops in an eating flask (don't have to b scalding hot) could also put a baked potato in one of those flasks. Cold salad potatoes and salad, some sort of cold meat dish in a little box that can be used for sandwiches - thinking curried chicken. Crackers - there are masses of variety these days, mini sausages or some sort of veggie version or same, cous cous with veg.
Sorry Shiney that was a bit rude of me. It is a very good idea, and if I had time I probably would do it. If I get a bit of time and peace and quiet some weekend I may give it a go. I just had images of myself trying to make mayonnaise on a week-night, and given the chaos that usually ensues on an average day, it was laugh or cry. Sorry, didn't mean to be rude.
-Tomato pasta with roast veg
-Roast veg and chicken Coucous
- houmous with meatballs or falafels
- pesto ( Parmesan free one) with pasta and peas and broccoli
- cold salmon and rice and peas and sweetcorn
- mixed beans and Tuna salad. With cucumber/ tomatoes/ corn
Sausage rolls? Dead easy to make, ditto Cornish pasties, oh yum.
I prefer the fake Mayo in the jar from health food shops (I forget the name) but not the yukky squeezy bottle one. Fake cheese is just an abomination.
Would she eat pinwheel sandwiches? Where you get flat bread, pop on filling and roll it up like a sausage and cut into slices.
Crackers? I like tartex veggie pate and you can get it in tiny little tubs.
No no not rude at all vvviola just didn't want you to think you'd be slaving away at it for ages. I know what it like trying to squeeze everything you've got to do in.
orginal DS likes mozzarisella cheese. I've tasted a tiny bit and it's disgusting.
Weird texture and taste, and don't try to cook with it! Cheezley is the worst.
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