Cooking

5 Easy Back-to-School Lunch Upgrades

These meals and snacks are anything but boring
Quick & Easy Lunch Box Ideas for Kids
Photos: Tasting Table

Does the thought of making one more PB&J make you want to run for the hills? We have a few ideas for switching things up that, we promise, won't mean more hours in the kitchen. Also, these recipes are easy upgrades, so they're great opportunities for you and your child to make them together.

Get ready to pack the hottest lunch box in town.

  • Smoked Turkey Sandwich

    This is not your average turkey sandwich. It's piled with onions, turkey, cheese, bacon and avocado. But the spread is what makes it: a mixture of mayo, cayenne, rice wine vinegar, garlic and salt. Total sandwich domination.

    Get the recipe.

  • City Ham and Cheese

    Take that classic ham and cheese sandwich to the next level with the addition of canned jellied cranberry slices; baby arugula; and a mayo, mustard, dill, thyme and celery seed spread.

    Get the recipe.

  • Almond-Quinoa Energy Bars

    Almonds and quinoa come together in this recipe to make a healthy energy bar packed with more than 10 grams of protein to keep your child full and focused. Pack these along with a small yogurt and a piece of fruit, and lunch is served.

    Get the recipe.

  • Baked Goldfish┬«-Style Crackers

    Every sandwich needs a sidekick, so pack a bag of these sharp cheddar cheese "goldfish" for lunch or an after-school snack. They are made with just six ingredients and come together in less than 30 minutes.

    Get the recipe.

  • Homemade Dunkaroos

    Now for every kid's favorite part of lunch: dessert. Skip the store-bought cookies and make these Dunkaroo copycats from scratch. Everything comes together in less than half an hour, plus additional time for chilling. If you save a few for your own lunch box, we won't judge.

    Get the recipe.

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