Lunchbox Savings Can Easily Be Discovered

by Jessica Sommerfield · 0 comments

It’s time to send the kids back to school, and that means getting back into the habit of packing lunches. First of all, packing your child’s lunch instead of paying for poor-quality and nutrition-deficit school-provided lunch items is essential to saving money and keeping your child healthy; even if you don’t think you have the time, it’s important to make the time.  Packing lunches the night before and having items ready to go will make school mornings less hectic and eliminate the excuse to skip packing lunches.  And, even if you’re already saving money (not to mention nutrition) by packing your child’s lunch instead of paying for hot school lunches, there are countless ways you can make packing lunches more economical and healthier without spending a lot of extra time.  The following are easy ways you can start saving more money this school season with every lunch you pack.

  • Don’t buy single-serve items — you’re wasting money.

If you take a moment to determine the per-unit price of single-service versus regular-sized items, you’ll quickly discover that you’re paying for the convenience while getting far less actual food for your money. Instead, buy larger units and divide them up into single servings yourself.  You can create your own single-serve jello, pudding and fruit cups in more interesting flavors and variety than you can find prepackaged. This can be done ahead of time, perhaps while you’re watching television.

  • Invest in cheap, reusable plastic ware.

Using plastic baggies is convenient but wasteful.  Instead, consider purchasing packages of various-sized small plastic containers that fit nicely in lunch bags and can be re-used again and again. Store-brand plastic containers are usually sufficient quality for this purpose, since you’ll have to replace lost and damaged ones, anyway. Designate these containers for lunch packing and keep them together in one location to make the ritual faster and more convenient.

  • Make lists and rotate for variety.

Create a good-sized list of lunch box staples (items your kids like and work well as on-the-go foods) and keep them in stock.  Packing the same items every day isn’t fair to your children’s pallet. Mixing it up will encourage them to appreciate a variety of different foods and ensure more balanced nutrition. Look for sales on the items you use to pack lunches on a regular basis and stock up, using coupons and sales ads.

  • Get creative.

Lunches don’t have to be confined to  sandwiches, chips, fruit and cookies. Consider utilizing dinner leftovers in your children’s lunches –any items that can be eaten cold or placed in a thermal container that holds heat until lunch time. Soup stays hot in thermos containers and provides a warming meal during cold winter months.  Rather than chips, consider packing dry cereal. It makes a great crunchy snack, can be bought in bulk, and usually carries more nutrition than chips. If you want to send something sweet, spend a Saturday at home baking and freeze single-servings of breads, muffins, brownies and cookies. This will be much cheaper than buying treats, and your home-baked goods will contain fewer preservatives and chemicals than the packaged variety.

  • Make it fun!

Saving money on packing lunches doesn’t have to be boring and mundane. By using a little creativity, variety, and ingenuity, your children will begin to look forward to seeing what’s in their lunch every day, and will make other kids jealous of their ‘cool’ parents who take the time to do what’s best for their child, their budget, and their lifestyle.

Bonus Tip:

Another way to save on your monthly Internet and TV costs is to find a current ATT U-Verse coupon code or at least a promotion to knock down your home service bill.

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