Pimp your Sandwich!
Sandwiches are often a staple of kids lunchboxes: they are quick to make, versatile and easy for little fingers to grab and eat. It certainly is the preferred lunch for my son.
To make the base of a sandwich, and to provide a source of carbohydrates, bread is often used but there are a number of alternatives that can be swapped in.
Wraps, tortillas, crisp breads, crackers can be used - opt for your brown or multigrain varieties.
If you are avoiding breads for any reason, consider nori sheets, lettuce leaves (they make great wraps and are crunchy too!) or even cabbage leaves.
These will all hold nutritious fillings and are easy to assemble and eat.
If you have time, making zucchini or pumpkin bread is also another way to sneak in extra nutrition. Let me know if you would like a recipe!
Variety is the spice of life. If you can, swap around types of bread, wraps and crisp breads (quinoa ones are a favourite at home!). Look for breads made with flours that are not wheat to add to the mix and enjoy 😊
Fillings of sandwiches are a great way to boost the protein in your child's diet.
Other than adding protein sources into the sandwich - such as tuna, ham, eggs, cheese etc, there are a couple of other ways to get it in to your child's lunchbox.
Falafel is made from chickpeas - high is protein and can be used as a filling in a sandwich.
Tahini is a spread made from sesame seeds that can be used instead of butter and is also a source of protein. It can have a bit of strong flavour - so start off with a small amount and work your way up.
Other things you can use as spreads are dips - like hummus and tzatziki. Hummus is made from chickpeas and it contains tahini - both great protein sources. Tzatziki contains yoghurt.
Seeds contain good levels of proteins and are easy incorporated into the lunch box by using a seeded bread.
Adding a couple of these options in can really help increase protein levels and keep tummies fuller for longer.
There are a few quick, easy (and painless!) ways to increase the good fats in your kids sandwiches.
Using dips as a spread - these are good sources of healthy fats and proteins and are pretty tasty as well. They can also be used for snacks but can incorporate well into a sandwich. Hummus and guacamole are great for those looking for vegetable sources, where tzatziki can be useful if you want to include dairy.
Add eggs to the sandwich filling - even whole egg mayonnaise can be used; just look for one that is processed as little as possible and is low in sugar. (Or make your own!)
Other foods that can be added to sandwich filling is avocado and oily fish like tuna or salmon.
Once again using seeded breads can also increase the good fats in our kid's sandwiches as seeds are a good source.
(It goes without saying if you have an allergy to any of these foods - please do not eat it. But it is also important know if these foods can be sent into your child's school classroom - always check if with the teacher if needed)