BUFFALO, N.Y. — With the rising cost of food, it’s hard to get kids to eat healthy, especially if you’re a busy parent on a budget.
Sally Gower, the owner of Eat Well Buffalo, shares some healthy habits you can practice that will help you pack your kids a protein-powered lunch without breaking the bank.
“Take 30 minutes of the day to prep the night before,” said Gower. “Even if it’s setting something aside while cooking dinner, it really helps save hassle in the long run.”
She also recommends things like homemade trail mix containing dried fruit, pretzels and even a little chocolate that kids can add themselves to feel like they are included in dining choices.
“Buying those items are great because then you can put that fruit with some nut butter on a celery stalk, cut up some carrots and throw in a cheese stick with a hard-boiled egg and you’ve got a lunch that cost less than $10 to make.
Gower also recommends putting together special daily lunch boxes to keep things simple and fun for your kids.
“You can do anything in these,” she said. “It can be leftovers from last night’s dinner even. This is a great device to take for lunches to school.”
Make sure to speak with your children about the types of meals and snacks they like to eat so you’re not packing things they won’t eat, Gowers adds.
“Parents want the healthiest meal possible and kids are dreaming about the chips and cookies for their lunch,” Gower said. “Ask your kiddos to list their top 10-15 favorite foods and then work on a plan to move them toward some healthiest options. If M+M yogurt is their choice, ask if you can throw in some strawberries and nuts into the yogurt too! Purchase the large containers of yogurt and add dried fruit, and nuts and healthier cereals to save money.”
For more recipes and tricks, visit Eat Well Buffalo.