Our Permaculture Life: Back to school - ideas for a healthy and delicious school lunch

Back to school - ideas for a healthy and delicious school lunch

Getting school lunch boxes right and being creative is a challenge. Lunchbox makers everywhere know this! You think you've got it sorted, then the kids change their minds about what they'll eat. Perhaps I am too soft, but I really want them to eat and enjoy the food, not throw it away or bring home a full lunchbox.

Getting the balance right so the kids do sit down and enjoy their lunchbox meals - meals that nourish their growing and active bodies and minds is so important. I am also determined for the lunches to be plastic waste-free.

Day 1, term 2 - today's school lunch. Organic popcorn, homemade organic crepe, organic homemade biscuits and a pear.

I also want to make sure they kids have enough to sustain them through the day, and that the food will still be edible when they get to eat it hours after preparation.

Maia and Hugh are now predominantly homeschooled, but when they did go to school, so many times much the food came home untouched.  I was always astounded - it was great food they loved to eat at home, but they said either they didn't have time to eat it, or it had gone 'yucky'. How did they manage to get through the day - learning and running around on nothing?  It's no wonder they crashed when they got home.

For the past year now, Maia has been learning at home, and Hugh has too for a term. 'Lunch box duty'  is not such a big issue anymore. Usually we make our lunches fresh together. But for two days a week, they attend an innovative extension education program based at the local University. Without the 5-day lunchbox commitment, I am learning to enjoy the challenge of creating interestingly appetising lunchbox combinations.

Today was first day of term 2, and this was what I whipped up at 6:30am.

I will see soon enough if it passed their scrutiny - fingers crossed! Mmm, what will I make tomorrow? Perhaps a quinoa and mushroom salad, or some ricotta, pumpkin and leafy green mini quiches ,with sugar-free banana chia cacao muffins. I'll make this for dinner tonight and put some extra aside for their lunches tomorrow.

BASIL: By plucking the tips of the basil and using these, it keeps the plant bushier and prolongs it's life.


Chop herbs finely. Quickly whisk all ingredients together with a fork. Pour 1/4 onto a sandwich press with a dab of coconut oil, and cook with the lid mostly shut for about 2 minutes (until cooked). Remove from hotplate, roll up and slice.

SOCEITY GARLIC: Both the strappy leaves and the mauve flowers are edible and garlic flavoured. Lovely fresh and cooked.

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