How to Pack a Lunch

Step 1: Peek inside your fridge. If you spot any leftovers from last night’s dinner, just pack them up and, voila, you’re done.

Step 2: No leftovers? No problem. Just make a sandwich (with 3 ounces protein, 1 tablespoon fat, and lots of veggies) on whole wheat bread. Try turkey with lettuce, tomato, cheese, and mustard; or tuna with low-fat mayo and spinach; or peanut butter and jam with carrot sticks on the side. Pack the sammy in a washable reusable container or wrap it in aluminum foil (recyclable) or waxed paper (compostable).

Step 3: Choose a piece of fruit for dessert.

Step 4: Add a beverage to whet the whistle; pour 8 ounces skim milk or juice into a reusable thermos. Buying in bulk and using a thermos, rather than buying individual juice or milk boxes, will save money (and the earth).

Step 5: Toss all of it into a reusable lunch box or satchel.

Step 6: Slip in a sweet, handwritten note to show your love. Want to be a little less mushy? Try a joke. Here’s one: Two snowmen are standing in a field. One says to the other, “Funny, I smell carrots, too!”

  • If the meal includes anything perishable, stash it in an insulated bag or box and add a cold pack (or a baggie filled with ice) to keep it cool.
  • If mornings are hectic, pack it the night before and stow it in the fridge.
  • The more (naturally) brightly colored the meal (think green spinach, red peppers, orange carrots, etc.), the more nutritious it’s likely to be. Rainbows never tasted so great!

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