Preschool lunch ideas

This post is sponsored through my partnership with Bitsy’s Brainfood

The smell of sharpened pencils, textbooks, and notebook paper is in the air. Back to school season has officially arrived! While I admit that there are days where I’m SO thankful for the hot lunch option, for the most part, I enjoy putting together Liv’s little meals to take to school with her. (She goes for a few half days each week.) My favorite time to pack her lunch is when we’re cleaning up the kitchen from the previous night’s dinner. I mix and match from some favorites, and pack it up so it’s ready to grab and go in the morning. I try to do whatever I can at night to streamline our morning routine. I thought I’d share some of her faves if you’re looking for lunch box inspiration this school year!

Preschool lunch ideas 1 of 1

Please keep in mind that I’m not a Registered Dietitian. Just wanted to share some of the ideas and combos that have worked in our family, and have also encouraged Liv to eat the rainbow. 

Some supplies:

Lunch box

Bento box or small containers

Water bottle

Cookie cutters or sandwich shapes (optional)

Cold pack

Preschool lunch ideas 1 of 1 2


1) Sandwich it up!

Favorite combos:

Turkey and cheese with a little mayo and mustard

Peanut butter (sunflower seed butter may be a good option if your school is nut-free. Trader Joe’s has an awesome one.), banana and cinnamon

Cookie cutter sandwich 1 of 1

*Sandwich tip: switch it up by cutting the sandwich into a shape -we have a heart sandwich cutter that Liv loves- or rolling it into a wrap before slicing

Almond butter (or sunflower seed butter) and jelly

Grilled cheese

BLT with turkey bacon and avocado

2) Pizza. I’ll pack leftover pizza from dinner, or make her an English muffin pizza with marinara, cheese, and olives. 

3) Pasta. She loves gnocchi (from Trader Joe’s) with Alfredo sauce, and Annie’s mac n’ cheese bunnies. If you pack the pasta in a thermos, it will stay warm until lunchtime. 

4) Deli meat roll-ups. Take your favorite deli meat, add some cheese or fillings, and roll up. 

5) Little meat and cracker stacks. These are like build-your-own Lunchables. I’ll grab some crackers (Trader Joe’s has pita crackers that she loves), top with a slice of cheese and some turkey.

6) Breakfast for lunch: French toast sticks and banana-egg pancakes do extremely well. I’ll leave them dry and pack a small container with syrup for dipping. 

7) Quesadillas or bean burritos. 


This one is pretty self-explanatory, but here are some faves!

8) Bananas. Sometimes I’ll slice lengthwise and add almond butter (or sunflower seed butter) and sprinkle with cinnamon

9) Berries

10) Apple slices: add a little lemon juice so they don’t brown.

11) Tropical fruits or melon they enjoy

12) Whole or stone fruit, sliced and top with lemon juice

13) Crudites and dip

14) Sweet potato or butternut squash wedges

15) Kale or zucchini chips

16) Soup. This will stay warm in a thermos.

17) Pouches

18) Homemade fruit leather

Cookie cutter veg 1 of 1

*Veggie tip: cut the veggies or fruit using small cookie cutters. I have these ones from Pampered Chef and they’re the perfect size for little hands. Liv won’t touch plain chopped zucchini, but if it’s roasted or cut into a star, she’ll devour it. 


Preschool lunch ideas 1 of 1 3

19) A little string cheese or Babybel cheese

20) Olives (Liv adores these)

21) Trail mix (again, be sure check with the school’s nut policy. All of Liv’s preschools so far have allowed nuts.)

22) Energy bites (for nut-free, use seeds and sunflower seed butter instead of almond butter)

23) Pretzels or crackers


24) A chocolate kiss

25) Gummies or fruit snacks

26) Homemade granola bars 

27) Bitsy’s Brainfood cookies or cereal. These are an amazing option, especially if your school is nut-free. Their cookies are free of nuts and also produced in a nut-free facility. Livi especially loves the Sweet Potato Oatmeal Raisin cookies, and the letter shapes make it a fun way to infuse learning into lunchtime. She really enjoys picking out the letters she knows, and we’ll spell out simple words together. You can find Bitsy’s at Target (here is the store locator) in the cookie aisle. It’s exciting to have this healthy option available, which encourage and empowers kids to choose foods that taste good while providing a nutrient boost. 

Bitsy’s Brainfood kindly offered a giveaway for 20 (!) lucky readers to try out their amazing products. 

Simply enter via the widget below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winners will be chosen and contacted on September 3.


 This post is sponsored by Bitsy’s Brainfood. Thank you so much for supporting this blog and the companies who help to support our family. 

Post Navigation:


  1. Ashley R on August 27, 2015 at 10:45 am

    My niece is almost two and LOVES being able to feed herself from bags. These would be a great option to give her! The Sweet Potato cookies would be a hit!

  2. Mama on August 27, 2015 at 10:49 am

    Would love to try chocolate cookies!!

  3. Colleen C. on August 27, 2015 at 10:57 am

    I have been dying to try the cookies!

  4. Eva on August 27, 2015 at 11:03 am

    I love this post, you geve lots of good lunch ideas 🙂

    If you want, check out my latest BACK TO SCHOOL ESSENTIALS blogpost:

  5. Jaime on August 27, 2015 at 11:31 am

    Great ideas, thank you!!

  6. Katie on August 27, 2015 at 11:44 am

    the cookies 🙂 my little guy loves them!

  7. Michelle Rae on August 27, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    I think my 2 year old would love the cookie!

  8. Kristina m on August 27, 2015 at 1:45 pm

    Thank you thank you for this post. My daughter starts pre kindergarten in two weeks and love the tips for packing lunch.

  9. Veronica on August 27, 2015 at 4:45 pm

    Would love to try the Sweet Potato Oatmeal Raisin cookies!! Sounds AMAZING

  10. Whitney on August 27, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    Sweet potato oatmeal raisin sound delicious!

  11. Neena on August 27, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    The chocolate cookies!

  12. Jameil on August 27, 2015 at 8:15 pm

    Orange chocolate beet cookies!

  13. Sarah L on August 27, 2015 at 8:35 pm

    I’d love to try the Zucchini Gingerbread Carrot Smart Cookies. I think that my daughter would really like them.

  14. Brenda on August 27, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    My guy would love zucchini gingerbread carrot smart cookies.

  15. Laura on August 27, 2015 at 9:24 pm

    The chocolate cookies, please.

  16. Jacqueline on August 27, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    We love packing Bitsy’s brainfood letters in our Yumbox. They are perfect for Preschool! Thanks for all the lunch suggestions.

  17. Tamieka@fitballingrunningmom on August 28, 2015 at 5:40 am

    Love the cookie cutter idea!! Thanks for this! Going to head to the store for a bento and cookie cutter!

  18. Tamieka@fitballingrunningmom on August 28, 2015 at 5:48 am

    Oh the sweet potato oatmeal sounds yummy!b

  19. Erin on August 28, 2015 at 7:22 am

    I’m such a big dork, but I LOVE packing my lunch for work. I’m a teacher and I pretty much follow your lunch packing routine. I pack lunch the night before so I’m more likely to stick to healthy foods. Also, every Sunday I get so excited to meal plan for the upcoming week.

  20. shaunie on August 28, 2015 at 9:09 am

    I would love to try the Green Berry Blast

  21. melissa on August 28, 2015 at 10:31 am

    the “animal” (letter) crackers!!!

  22. Casey on August 28, 2015 at 11:08 am

    Did you know they now sell Bitsy’s brainfood at Thrive Market online. . .LOVE Thrive! 😉

  23. Casey on August 28, 2015 at 11:09 am

    Oooops. . .my Instagram name is: caseylynn760. . .sorry!

  24. Emily on August 28, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    Very cute, would love to try bitsy brain food for my little mini man!

  25. Renda on August 28, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    Wonderful ideas! Thank you! Question for you…do you give Liv a multi? Fluoride? If so, which brand? I don’t like the prediatrician prescribed because it is full of artificial coloring and dyes. Then I found a more natural one at Whole Foods but the gummy caused my little girl to have a cavity! Currently, my kids don’t take anything. Just curious what you give Liv. Thanks a bunch!!

  26. Missy on August 28, 2015 at 5:31 pm

    I would like to try the sweet potato oatmeal raisin cookies.

  27. Diana Cote on August 28, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    We would love to try the cereal.

  28. ann on August 29, 2015 at 6:50 am

    I love the cookie cutter idea. I would love to try the oatmeal sweet potato raisin cookies. yum.

  29. Helen on August 30, 2015 at 7:02 am

    This is an awesome giveaway! I love healthy snacks!

  30. Amanda on August 30, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    The orange-chocolate-beet cookies look delicious!!

  31. kelli on August 30, 2015 at 5:08 pm

    we’d love to try the banana squash squares

  32. Kari F on August 30, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    The sweet potato cookies! Yum!

  33. Sarah K on August 31, 2015 at 6:48 am

    I want to try the sweet potato oatmeal raisin cookies – yum!

  34. Franciele Gassy on August 1, 2019 at 3:19 pm

    The chocolate cookies sound good. Thanks

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.