Fun Lunch Ideas for Kids

By Maria Lichty

View RecipePin Recipe4.476
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.

Quick Summary

Healthy and fun lunch ideas that are perfect for school or home. Even the pickiest of young eaters will love these nutritious and delicious lunches!

kids lunch boxes  with fruits, vegetables, and owl toast.

Whether children are in school or learning at home, the lunchtime dilemma is the same. What should we make our kids for lunch and what will they actually eat? It’s discouraging to open up their lunch box and find half of the lunch untouched.

Today, I am sharing Fun Lunch Ideas for Kids that are perfect for school lunches or at home lunches. Don’t get me wrong, I love a classic PB&J, but we are thinking outside of the “lunchbox” today and bringing you LOTS of fresh, healthy, and affordable ideas!

I have tested these ideas on my boys and they give them two thumbs up! Feel free to mix and match to create the perfect meal for your child. Mixing it up is all part of the fun!

fun lunch box for kids.

Lunchbox Tips

Before we get into the actual lunchbox ideas, I want to share some tips that will help you become a pro at packing lunches.

  • Check the rules– If your child is taking a lunch to school, make sure you follow the rules on what they can bring. Is there a no nut policy? Can they bring drinks?
  • Lunchbox– Buy a lunchbox, lunch bag, or container. I recommend getting an ice pack or insulted lunchbox to keep things cold. You can also purchase a thermos for packing hot items (this one is larger for bigger kids).
  • Meal plan– Look at the calendar and make a plan for the week. Ask the kids for ideas, when they are involved in meal planning, they are more likely to eat their meals. Make a list of what groceries you need.
  • Go grocery shopping– Make sure your fridge and pantry and stocked with lunch options. If something is on sale that you use regularly, stock up.
  • Prep– When you get home from the store, do some prep work. Wash and cut up veggies, make hard-boiled eggs, make energy balls, homemade granola bars, etc.
  • Pack the night before– Mornings are often hectic so pack lunches before bed or at least the items that will stay fresh. If your kids are old enough, have them help! Some sandwiches you can even freeze for up to 1 month.
  • Mix it up– Try new foods every week. Use whatever fruits and veggies are in season-this will help keep the cost down too. Plus, fresh is always best!
  • Make it special– Surprise your child with a special note, sticker, or treat. On holidays, make a themed lunch that goes with the holiday.
  • Water Bottle– don’t forget to send a water bottle. The IceFlows are our favorite! They come in a few sizes and lots of colors. They keep water cold for hours and hours!
healthy lunch box with fruits, veggies, and owl toast for kids.

Lunch Ideas

  • Most of the ideas below are customizable, and it’s easy to mix and match ingredients based on what your children like and what they don’t like.
  • I try to always include a variety of colorful fruits and veggies. Pro tip-provide a dip (ranch, hummus, or yogurt for fruit). Kids love dipping!
  • Don’t get overwhelmed! I included lots of ideas so you can mix and match and change up your kids lunch so they don’t get bored…and so you don’t get bored packing them:)
  • Not every meal needs to be fancy, elaborate, or “cute,” but kids love creativity so surprise them one in awhile. Make a cutie flower, owl toast, or pizza on a stick (as seen in the photos) and your kids will open their lunch box with a big smile!
  • Pack appropriate portion sizes based on your child’s appetite so food isn’t going to waste and so your child isn’t still hungry. It might take a few tries to get it right, but you will get it!


  • Hard-boiled eggs (eat plain or make an egg salad sandwich)
  • Lunch meat (turkey, ham, or roast beef! Roll them up with cheese or make a sandwich!)
  • Leftover rotisserie chicken or cooked chicken
  • My boys love Pesto Chicken Salad!
  • Hummus (great with veggies or pita bread)
  • String cheese, cheese cubes, or cheese slices
  • Cottage cheese (enjoy with fruit or crackers)
  • Greek yogurt (great as a fruit dip)
  • Salami or pepperoni (make pizza on a stick or eat with cheese and crackers)
  • Tuna salad, egg salad, or chickpea salad
  • Beans (my boys love roasted chickpeas and black bean dip! You can also make a quesadilla!)
  • Nut butter (peanut butter, almond butter, or use sun butter for nut allergies! Make a sandwich, spread on crackers or fruit, or spread on a tortilla with fruit and roll up!)
  • Nuts or trail mix
  • Beef jerky



  • Baby carrots or carrot sticks
  • Celery sticks (make ants on a log with nut butter and raisins or add cream cheese and everything bagel seasoning)
  • Sweet bell peppers (cut in strips or buy the mini peppers)
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Black olives
  • Snap peas
  • Cucumbers
  • Edamame
  • Salads– I have lots of options and most hold up well. You can store the dressing on the side in a little container.


  • Berries (strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, or blueberries)
  • Grapes (fresh or frozen)
  • Apples (if you slice them drizzle with a little lemon juice to prevent browning)
  • Oranges (slice so they are easy to eat)
  • Pineapple
  • Pears
  • Melon (watermelon, cantaloupe, or honeydew)
  • Applesauce pouches or homemade applesauce (pear sauce is good too!)
  • Dried fruit (cranberries, raisins, blueberries, apricots, or banana chips)
  • Freeze-dried fruit
  • Fruit Salad is always fun to pack!

Hot and Cold

If you have a thermos or if it’s an option to heat up the lunch, feel free to pack the following items. The thermos will keep them hot or cold. Don’t forget to pack a fork or spoon, if they will need one!


I hope these ideas help you pack nutritious and delicious lunches that your kids will love. If you have any fun ideas, please share in the comments!

More Lunch Ideas

Email Yourself This Recipe
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus, you’ll get NEW recipes from us every week!

Owl Toast & Pizza on a Stick

How to make owl toast and pizza on a stick! Two fun lunch box ideas for kids!
4.47 from 13 votes


For the Owl Toast:

  • 1 slice of bread, (toasted or fresh)
  • Simple Truth almond butter (can use peanut butter)
  • 1 kiwi slice, cut in half
  • 2 banana slices
  • 2 blueberries
  • strawberry, cut into a nose
  • Cheerios, broken in half

For the Pizza on a Stick:

  • Bamboo skewers, sharp ends cut off
  • Flatbread, cut into square pieces
  • Pepperoni slices
  • Kroger Mozzarella Sticks, cut into pieces
  • Kroger black olives
  • Grape tomatoes
  • Bell pepper, cut into pieces


  • For the owl, spread the almond butter on the bread. Place the kiwi halves on the almond butter for the wings. Add the banana slices for the eyes and put blueberries on top. Place the strawberry below the eyes for the nose. Add the Cheerios for the feathers. Serve.
  • For the pizza on a stick, skewer the flatbread, pepperoni, cheese, olives, tomatoes, and bell peppers on the bamboo skewer.
Keywords lunch

Have you tried this recipe?

Leave a comment below and share a photo on Instagram. Tag @twopeasandpod and hashtag it with #twopeasandtheirpod

Get the best of the best!
4 Recipes Guaranteed to be New Favorites


I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
Read More

Kid Friendly Main Dishes Snack

4.47 from 13 votes (11 ratings without comment)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


Leave a comment

  1. These ideas are great! However my husband has become very strict on what our son eats. No crackers (unless they’re like cauliflower crackers and only like 3) no PB&J, no cheese, no mac & cheese, no cottage cheese and anything made from flour is in small amounts. It makes it difficult and our son is getting bored with eating at all. Thank you for the ideas though. I’ll be saving these.