It’s back-to-school time, time to think about packing lunches for your young ones. Packed lunch provides the comfort of home when your child faces changes and challenges at school. Providing lunchtime smiles has prompted many clever lunch ideas like peanut butter and jelly “sushi” rolls, happy face sandwiches, and the bento box craze.
While assembling the cutest lunch that provides your child with the best nutrition and impresses your kid’s lunch mates, it is important to keep food safety in mind. We all know that hot food needs to stay hot and cold food needs to stay cold. We have a few more tips to help you pack a safe lunch:
- Use an insulated lunch bag or box and ice pack. Clean both daily.
- For hot soups, fill a thermos with hot water. Let the water sit for 30 minutes. Dump out the water and fill the warm thermos with hot soup. Seal immediately.
- Prepare sandwiches or wraps ahead of time. Freeze them overnight so they stay cool until lunch.
- Keep perishable fruits and vegetables chilled until it’s time to pack the lunch.
- Freeze your Cool Cups so they travel better and stay chilled. They make a great “cold core” for a packed lunch.
- Pack the lunch as your child brushes teeth and puts on shoes. Keep everything cold as long as possible.
You might try the Core of Cold technique for packing lunch. Start with your ice pack in the center of the bag or box. Put your frozen Cool Cups right next to the ice pack. Continue circling around the ice pack with your cold sandwich, veggie sticks, and chilled fruit. Circle that layer with chips or crackers and fruit leather. All of the cold goods get packed by the ice pack, and the non-perishables insulate the cold foods on the outside.
Don’t forget to add Cool Cups to your grocery list for back-to-school! How about a coupon?