Back to School Lunch Ideas: Reducing Waste with On-the-go Meal Prep

Back-to-school time means preparing, mentally and logistically, for the next 9+ months of prepping quick breakfasts and packing lunches. This year, avoid pre-packaged foods and plastic waste by using eco-friendly storage products instead of single-use plastic bags and wrappers. One excellent source of inspiration and motivation is a kid-friendly recipe resource,, with actual child-tested and approved ideas.

For school lunches, Weelicious offers ideas for finger food lunches, packed in Bento-style containers (optional to use cutesy cookie-cutters for sandwiches). Another unique idea is Sandwich-on-a-Stick, using cubed bread, cheeses, sliced or cubed meats, cherry tomatoes, and cucumbers. The reusable bento-style boxes let you separate ingredients and reduce prep time. You can also discover what your kids won’t eat with a mix and match lunch game.

The Kitchen Engine in downtown Spokane—located at the Flour Mill retail building north of Riverfront Park—offers Full Circle Ziptuck reusable storage bags. They are BPA-free, air-tight, leak-proof, freezer-safe, and washable. The Kitchen Engine offers all available bundles (clear only): 2 snack bags, $6.99; mini (1/2 cup) and travel bag (1 quart) set, $7.99; and 2 sandwich bags, $7.99. Store crackers, baby carrots, or anything else you would normally pack in a disposable baggie.

The Kitchen Engine also sells Bee’s Wrap (alternative to plastic wrap)—washable, re-usable, malleable food storage sheets. Options include a sandwich pack ($11.99) and sets of 3 in small, medium, or large ($17.99-$20.99). //


[Feature photo: Shallan Knowles]

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