Real Kid Real Food- Lunch

March 22, 2013

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I plan to frequently write a Real Kid Real Food post because let’s be honest, it is a little daunting to go from feeding our children mostly processed food to unprocessed, real food.  I love Lisa Leake’s definition of real food found here.  Today I’m going to talk about a few meals we feed our three year old son, Noah, for lunch.  Keep in mind that I stay home with the kids and we are on a budget.  Therefore we end up eating most of the same foods every week right now since I am fairly new to this journey and it is easier for me to be familiar with what I’m going to make each week since I’m usually running on little sleep and have tons of other things to tend to!  I pack his lunch two days a week for school so I try to be as easy as possible!

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Our Lunch Staples:

Brown Rice Cake (Lundberg, non GMO verified,), whole wheat pita pocket, or whole wheat tortilla roll-up with almond butter and raw, unfiltered honey, a side of carrots and hummus, almonds and dried or fresh fruit- You can find the rice cakes anywhere, they even have them at Walmart.  I always like to buy plain and then add my own flavor through honey, nut butters, bananas, etc…I used to buy the Toufayan pita bread until I found local bread at Sprouts that has less ingredients.  I have not found a whole wheat tortilla with great ingredients.  They all contain genetically modified soy or corn and just a laundry list of chemicals.  I’m going to try my hand at making my own and I’ll let you know how it goes!  Share a recipe in the comments if you have a good one!!!

Hummus plate with pita bread and carrots, fruit-  I need to ask permission from the chef who shared her recipe with me before I post the hummus recipe I use, however to save time I like Central Market classic hummus or Trader Joe’s classic hummus and both are very well priced and at least a dollar cheaper than Sabra brand at Walmart (and taste better in my opinion).  I used to do all my shopping at Walmart and Kroger by my house but now I find it necessary to make at least one trip every few weeks to a place like Central Market or Sprouts.  I am heading to Trader Joe’s tomorrow and I’m pretty sure it’s going to change my life.  I’ve been before but this will be my first trip to go somewhat knowledgeable about what ingredients we are trying to avoid.  I’ll show you what I buy!!!

Earth’s Best Organic chicken nuggets, fruit, veggie chips or carrots and hummus– I don’t buy the nuggets often because of the price and because we are trying to do a more plant based diet in our home, however Noah loves them and they are so easy on a day we need a quick lunch that requires little thought (although all of these lunches are easy!).  I’m sure I could make our own organic chicken nuggets and freeze them and will try this in the future…I just don’t buy much meat in general and part of our decision to eat this way has led to a decrease in animal proteins because of the effect on our bodies, not to mention the price tag.  I get Veggie Sticks at Sprouts and I still am not sure about the oil they are cooked in, but they have no artifical dyes and are made with real vegetables.

Whole Wheat Pasta with Kale or Spinach blended into the pasta sauce- I typically buy Muir Glen organic pasta sauce, however I’d like to make my own, share your recipes in comments if you love yours!!!  And just FYI, the kale does change the flavor of the pasta sauce but the spinach does not!  You may want to start with spinach if this is new to your child!
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I would love to know what your lunch staples are!  I’m always looking for new, easy ideas.  Especially ideas that include more vegetables.   I like to make the same lunch for myself that I feed Noah because I want him to see me eating the same foods, just enhanced with more vegetables in hopes that someday he will eat more vegetables and consider it “the norm”.  I usually add more veggies to my lunch like bell peppers, mushrooms, tomato, cucumber, celery, etc…)  I’ll share what I eat every day with you soon. Next week we can discuss Real Kid Real Food Breakfast!!!!  Have a happy Friday!

  • I love this Lauren! I hardly ever have to feed Caleb lunch due to him being at school or at his Dad’s but when I do dinner, he eats what we are eating (which is very clean and fresh) or he doesn’t eat. I like that you mentioned you want Noah to see you eating good, that’s how I am with Caleb!

    You are such an awesome Mom!!

    • Thank you Jordan! I love your blog too, you are so inspiring!!!

  • Luci

    We eat ak-mak crackers a lot with a nut butter and sliced fresh fruit. You should try them out if you haven’t already. I’ve also started to saute kale & carrots seasoned with cumin & that’s been a new lunch staple. Thanks for blogging & sharing!

    • yum!!! I have read about ak-mak crackers on and will definitely try them!!! Noah loves crackers. The kale and carrots sounds wonderful too!!!

  • Jaclyn

    My biggest challenge is the gluten-free status at my house. the brown rice cakes would likely be a good option. however, i’ve been concerned about some of the arsenic reports in brown rice (remarkably, the organic brown rice seems to be worse from what I’ve read…i still feed him lots of earth’s best stuff (and all the wheat-free ones have brown rice)). we try to eliminate most grains along the lines of the paleo diet due to matthew’s celiac disease (using grass fed beef, wild fish, and organic free range chicken to provide the “bulk” that is left with a diet low in grains/breads). but i’m always in need of ideas! i look forward to following your journey!

    • I knew about the arsenic in rice but didn’t know it was worse in organic brown rice! YIKES. Do you guys have a Sprouts? If we were completely gluten free that is where I would do all my shopping because everything is clearly labeled GF there. I’ll keep my eyes open for GF real food ideas other than beef and veggies and let you know what I find!!! My friend Whitney is GF and she has really yummy recipes on her blog if you are ever bored (which is highly unlikely since you may just be the busiest gal I know!!!)

  • Hi Lauren, I love your blog! I have been slowly trying to do the same thing with our family. Lisa Leake’s whole wheat tortilla recipe is easy and good. It is a little time consuming but it makes a lot and you can freeze them.

    • Oh I’m glad you said it’s easy because I’m trying it next week!!!! As you find new recipes and/or easy ways to incorporate real food, I’d love for you to share ideas! I’m still fairly new at all of this!!!

      • She uses white whole wheat flour, I used regular whole wheat. They were a little heavy and I can see how the white whole wheat may be a little better, but they were still good.