Remember last week, I told you how I was just finishing up back to school lunch supplies for my super picky eater? Well, I’m done…I think! You never know, I could see something else that he absolutely needs down the line. For now, though, I’m done. Good thing, too, since he went back earlier this week!

10 Sandwich-Free School Lunch Ideas for Kids (and moms too!)

In that post, I promised a few easy ideas for your non-sandwich-eating picky eaters. I really wanted to wow you with some impressive lunch art skills. I spent all last night looking up various cool creations. Then reality struck and I remembered that when it comes to art like that, it’s just not in me. Sorry, guys. Major points to those of you who can pull it off! What I CAN do, though, is come up with non-sandwich lunch ideas. I do it all the time, since my son only likes ONE type of sandwich!

10 Sandwich-Free School Lunch Ideas

These school lunch ideas assume that you know which foods needs to go into the little containers with the freezer packs and which can survive staying at room temp.

  • Fruit Salad: Add three or so “hearty” fruits that hold up well in a lunch box (apples, grapes, big chunks of cantaloupe) in the main compartment along with a few thick slices of cheddar cheese. Send along a small container of yogurt for dipping.
  • BBQ Chicken: Cube pieces of cooked chicken (or buy it that way, if you want) and send along BBQ dipping sauce in a separate container. Add a few of your child’s favorite crispy raw veggies on the side.
  • Meal in a muffin: My dear friend Olfa has managed to pack an entire meal into her Chicken & Vegetable muffins in a way that makes them perfect for lunch boxes! Check out her recipe, then get creative and see how you can turn your child’s favorite hot meals into muffins that work for school.
  • Ribbon Salad: Take your child’s favorite veggies and cut them into ribbon shapes. Add a little ham or turkey, some Parmesan cheese and a container with their favorite dressing.
  • PB&A Cracker Stackers: Spread peanut butter (or, if it’s banned, an allergy-free alternative) on two crackers. Top one with a thin apple slice, then top with the other cracker. If your kids are adventurous, throw a slice of cheddar on top of the apple. Mmmm!
  • Pinwheels: Even plain old sliced turkey and cheese is more fun when you turn it into a pinwheel! Roll them up and pack them tight so they don’t come apart. Add a side of veggies. Carrot sticks hold up great in lunch boxes.
  • Personal pizzas: Either buy flatbread and cut into circles or bake up some pizza dough the night before (and cut into smaller circles). Pack along with shredded mozzarella, pizza sauce and your child’s favorite topping in separate containers. Jacob eats cold pizza all the time like this.
  • Pick Up Sticks: I came across this idea on Kelley McGuire Allergy Friendly Fun Lunch Boxes. Basically, serve your kids favorite veggies, cheeses and even pancakes in stick form. Add dipping sauce and you’re set! Check out hers, because it’s super cute!
  • Cold Taco Salad: I don’t eat beef, so I had no idea you could eat taco meat cold. For Jacob, I would use ground chicken in place of beef. If you have tacos the night before, this is a great way to use leftovers. Send along the meat in one compartment, cheese in another and any condiments your child uses in a third. Add tortilla chips for crunch. At lunch time, tell them to mix it all together how they want and enjoy!
  • DIY Luncher: I am trying to explain this without stepping on anyone’s trademark, but you know those prepackaged little lunches with meat, cheese and some sort of cookie that you get in the dairy section? Well, you can make those yourself very easily and they’ll look EXACTLY like the real thing to your kid.

Stop sending the same old boring PB&J. Think outside the sandwich bag with these 10 non-sandwich school lunch ideas for kids (and moms too!).


Jake likes the ham and cheddar. I go to the deli section and ask for ham sliced thick. Then I use a cookie cutter to cut small circles out of it and layer it on top of crackers. The cheese is easy, just slice it in small rectangles. I also add Jake’s favorite turkey pepperoni. Add some fruits and veggies, plus a couple of your kids favorite cookies for dessert. Toss in your WetOnes and you’re good to go!

Don't forget the WetOnes Singles in your back to school lunches for kids!


What are a few of your favorite non-sandwich school lunch ideas for kids? Tell me in the comments!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Wet Ones®. The opinions and text are all mine.