Friday, August 31, 2012

Doctor Who Lunch

My husband and I are truly nerdy geeks.  We walked into our wedding reception to The Throne and End Title from Star Wars and purchased a lightsaber on the way home from the hospital with our son.  We had a date with Battlestar Galactica every Saturday night and watched Firefly religiously.  Our new obsession is Doctor Who (thank you, Netflix) and we can't get enough of it.  We even find ourselves quoting it with a "BRILLIANT" or "OY"!  Naturally, I had to make a lunch for my husband in the Doctor Who Theme.

The Bento Bloggers and Friends has a small arsenal of Doctor Who followers and we decided to to a blog hop in honor of this fantastic show and the broadcast of the new season here in America on September 1st.
Our main entree is brown rice with broccoli and Bool Kogi Beef from Trader Joe's.  This is topped with black lentils.  We added a piece of mozzarella cheese on top in the shape of a TARDIS with embellishments courtesy of our food safe markers.  Also, we put more cheese letters cut out into Ooh, Wee, Ooh because of the theme song.  ♪♫♪

Our vegetable side is a carrot Dalek.  We really worked on our carving skills to figure this guy out.  We also added a few toothpick accessories to bring the beast to life.  (*this is not a lunch for a child)

Our fruit side is little apple Adipose.  The one time when the browning of an apple works to our advantage. Again, we worked on our carving skills for these guys.

Finally, our dairy/dessert is.......
Chobani Greek Yogurt ALIENS!!!!!!!!!!!  We used some plain Chobani yogurt, added a little bit of honey and some green food coloring, then froze it in a silicon mold.  These were a HUGE hit!

If you are digging the TARDIS napkins in the background, check out Spoonflower.  They have an AMAZING variety of Doctor Who material.  We got some and made a few napkins out of it that are perfect for lunches.

Now check out what Karen has cooked up at Our Lunch Bags.  It's almost Timey Wimey for the new season!!!!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Angry Birds Lunch

This is the first Fun Friday of the school year.  If you are new to Molly's Lunch Box, Fun Friday is the special day when we include a fun treat in our lunch boxes.  Sometimes it's a cookie, sometimes it's candy but it's always delicious.
Our main entree is a salami and cheese sandwich on a sun dried tomato wrap.  We're calling it the launching pad for the Angry Bird.  Our Angry Bird is a Babybel mozzarella cheese that we used a round cookie cutter to peel the bottom of the red wax off.  We used a straw to cut out the eyes and our food safe markers to embellish the eyes and eyebrows.  Finally, we cut a small piece of colby jack cheese (used in the sandwich) for the beak.

Our vegetable side is a green salad with ground cherries (part of the tomato family) and a side of creamy French dressing.

Our fruit side is peaches and raspberries.  Both girls really like this combination of fruits.

Finally...the Fun Friday treat!  Angry Birds graham crackers and Angry Birds gummy fruit snacks.

Have a great weekend and Happy Labor Day!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Lunches by Request

When Bean got home today, she raved about her "Lunchable" and asked for the same thing for tomorrow.  I was planning something different but she was so excited that I couldn't say no.  Plus, they are so easy to make, I didn't mind.  Molly requested that I make something new so I went with what I had planned.
Bean's lunch is a pepperoni, mozzarella and colby jack cheeses and Kashi TLC Asiago Cracker "Lunchable".

We added cucumber slices for her vegetable side.

The fruit side is a clementine and a few raspberries.

Finally, her dairy/dessert is Chobani Champions Vanilla Chocolate Chunk.
Molly's lunch is two shrimp spring rolls.  These have shrimp, rice noodles, herbs, lettuce, cucumbers, sugars snap peas and carrots in their rice paper wrapper.  We added a small container of peanut dipping sauce.

Her vegetables are in her main entree.

The fruit side is strawberries and raspberries.

Finally, her dairy/dessert is Chobani Champions Vanilla Chocolate Chunk, just like Bean.

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Make Your Own Lunchable

If your kids are like mine, they are drawn toward those Lunchables available just about everywhere these days.  I understand that making your own cracker sandwiches is fun but there is so little actual food in those things that most kids would be starving an hour later.  We figured that we'd just make our own.
Looks innocent enough but not very nutritious and only enough for a snack.
Much Better!  

Our main entree is Kashi TLC Toasted Asiago Crackers, Turkey Pepperoni and Mozzarella and Colby Jack Cheeses cut out with our circle cookie cutter.  (Pretty much everything in the Lunchable but much healthier.)

Our vegetable side is multi colored bell peppers.  They were a big hit on the first day of school and we had plenty left to add some for tomorrow's lunch.

Our fruit side is a mix of blueberries, raspberries and strawberries.  We put a party hat on one of the strawberries to make the girls smile.

Finally, our dairy/dessert is our favorite Greek yogurt, Chobani Champions in the Verry Berry variety.
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We also made a fun lunch for Daddy.  To say he's a Star Wars fan would be a huge understatement.  
This is turkey meatloaf on wild rice with pepper and berry sides.
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Monday, August 27, 2012

New Fruit from Trader Joe's

We ♥ Trader Joe's at our house.  It's a good haul from our house to the closest store but completely worth it.  We are all about those products that are exclusive to TJ's and we can't live without them.  We are totally addicted to a couple of them.  But, what is even better about Trader Joe's is their impressive fresh produce.  We've tried everything from teeny tiny potatoes to pea shoots and keep going back for more.  We also found something else on our trip last week and the girls are ecstatic to have them in their lunches for tomorrow.
Our main entree is a salami and colby jack cheese sandwich on Trader Joe's whole grain bread.  We used a flower shaped cookie cutter for the large sandwich and our micro heart for the tiny ones.

Our vegetable side is a seedless cucumber that has been cut using a fluted Japanese vegetable cutter.

Our fruit side is....Champagne grapes!  Those tiny little grapes that champagne is made from.  They are adorable and have a great sweet flavor.

Our dairy side is a Sargento colby jack cheese stick.  The girls have a larger appetite at the beginning of the year so this is a great way to curb their hunger.

Finally, our dessert is raspberry yogurt covered pretzels.  We put a few of these in this lunch for a special little treat.

If you like Trader Joe's and lunches as much as we do, our friends at Easy Lunchboxes are coming out with a cookbook very soon.  Pre-Order you copy with the link below.

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Sunday, August 26, 2012

1st Day of School Lunch

WOW!  That was fast!  Didn't I just write the post about the last day of school a few hours ago?  Seriously though, we are so excited for the new school year.  Molly and Bean packed their back packs, picked out their outfits and settled into their beds perfectly.  I remember it being like the night before Christmas.  I never slept well because I was SO excited to start school again.

Without further ado....LUNCH!
Bean's Lunch
Molly's Lunch

Our main entree for Bean is a Nutella and Peanut Butter and Company peanut butter sandwich on Trader Joe's whole grain bread.  We used our mini apple, alphabet and number cookie cutters to make some back to school shapes and our food safe markers to bring the apples to life.

Our main entree for Molly is Trader Joe's Perline Pasta and Prosciutto salad with some light Italian dressing.

Our vegetable side is a rainbow of bell peppers.  A favorite of both girls.

Our fruit side is figs and raspberries.  We drizzled a little bit of honey on the figs per the girls' request.

Finally, our dairy side is vanilla yogurt with little school bus sprinkles on it.  
We also made a little something for Molly and Bean's teachers.  We figured that a little survival kit would be a nice gift to start the new school year.
Some instant coffee, pretzels, milk and dark chocolate, raisins, antacids, vitamin C, gum and the teacher's favorite tool...the red pen. ☺

Happy 1st Day of School Everyone!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Last Lunch of Summer

Our summer was, in a word, FANTASTIC!  We had a couple of impromptu trips, fun with family and friends and spent a LOT of time at the pool.  We enjoyed nights in our neighbor's back yard around the fire pit and caught fireflies while toasting marshmallows.  It was definitely a great time for all of us but alas, summer has come to an end and the school year starts on Monday.

Three Easy Lunchboxes sitting by the pool.  
A super yummy meal, we know it will be cool.
One last lunch before summer ends for school.

The girls enjoyed some leftover homemade pizza, celery and carrot sticks, and a black velvet plum.  They were all fueled up for the last swimming session before school starts.  
CJ had a homemade "lunchable".  We used a circle shaped cookie cutter to cut cheese to fit on his crackers.  We then rolled up two pieces of turkey and put Captain America rings on them to keep them rolled up.  Captain America is his absolute favorite character...EVER!

His vegetable side is Trader Joe's shredded carrots.  He even ate a few of them!  This is a big thing for us since he is kind of anti-veggie. 

We added a peeled clementine for his fruit and he really enjoyed it.  

See you Sunday night for our 1st Day of School Lunches!!!!  

Friday, August 24, 2012

Easy Lunchboxes, Not Just For Lunch

We are so blessed that Molly and Bean are very open to eating a very large variety of foods.  Unfortunately, CJ (3 years old) isn't quite there yet.  He is by far the pickiest kid we have and pretty much refuses any vegetables that you put in front of him.  Last night for dinner, I decided that maybe a little creativity would help expand his palate.  I used and Easy Lunchbox to make it even more fun for him...and easier for me.
CJ is really into rocket ships and is always talking about going to the moon so we decided to go with it.

Our main entree is peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  We used Trader Joe's white whole wheat bread, Peanut Butter and Company's The Bee's Knees peanut butter and Trader Joe's reduced sugar organic blueberry preserves.  We used our rocket ship cookie cutter to cut them out and then decorated them with our food safe markers. 

Our vegetable side is Trader Joe's shredded carrots.  A little goes a long way with CJ and vegetables so we tucked about a tablespoon worth of these under each rocket ship with some showing on the bottom to look like the flames.

Our fruit side is a granny smith apple.  We cut out 3 stars with a small cookie cutter and then chopped the rest.

Our dairy side was milk which is not shown in this photo. 

Finally, we found Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Space Adventures and had to add them to complete the theme.  There are yellow stars and moons, red space ships and the orange goldfish.  

VERDICT: It worked!!!  He ate just about everything with only a few apple slices, a couple of goldfish and a couple of carrot pieces left.  


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Practice for School

We make a few fun lunches over the summer but not every day.  Just before school starts, we make a couple of practice lunches. Mom can figure out what will and will not be eaten and we can be sure that the kids know how to open/close their lunch box goodies.

Molly and Bean had the same lunch in their Laptop Lunches Bento Ware Boxes.  

Our main entree is a turkey wrap.  We used a spinach and herb flour tortilla, spread some whipped cream cheese on it, added lettuce and honey roasted turkey breast slices.  We rolled it up and cut it into pieces for the girls.  We also added some cute little bunny picks.

Our vegetable side is fresh sugar snap peas.

Our fruit is a yellow watermelon.  We used our melon baller to make bite sized pieces.  We added a heart fork pick to this box.

Our dairy side is a Sargento Colby Jack cheese stick.

Finally, our dessert is a few Angry Birds graham crackers.  These were a big hit!

CJ is only 3 so he won't have a school lunch like the girls but we made something fun for him too.  

His main entree is a Pepperidge Farm Brown Sugar Goldfish Bread sandwich with Peanut Butter and Company's Dark Chocolate Dreams spread on it.

He has a clementine, yellow watermelon, sugar snap peas, pretzel sticks and Angry Bird graham crackers for his sides.  

School starts next week!  We can't wait!

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Monday, August 20, 2012

Grown Up Lunch Box

Tonight was pretty busy at our house.  Daddy came home and I jumped in the shower to get ready for the Kindergarten orientation for Bean.  I had pulled down a pork "steak" from the freezer and Daddy tossed it on the grill.  Dinner was started!  I am SO lucky that my husband is a hands on Dad.  He took charge and cooked up the whole grain pasta, popped the steam fresh broccoli in the microwave and got the kids ready for dinner.  When I came downstairs, everyone was praying and started eating.

The best part was my discovery when cleaning out the refrigerator for garbage night.  I noticed something in the refrigerator that I hadn't put in there earlier.  Daddy has jumped on the Easy Lunchboxes bandwagon!  He had taken the leftovers from dinner and made himself an awesome lunch for tomorrow.
Daddy's main entree is whole grain rotini topped with slices of herb and pepper rubbed pork steak.  This is a very lean cut of meat and loaded with flavor. The whole grain carbs of the pasta are fantastic for a runner like Daddy.

His vegetable side is steamed broccoli with a few fresh sugar snap peas.  These will warm up nicely together.

Finally, his fruit side is a black velvet apricot.  These are really sweet and perfect for a nice ending to a meal.

Daddy gets his dairy in at breakfast with his yogurt, so not to worry. :)

We are SO proud of him for being a great example to his kids and his co-workers of how to eat healthfully away from home.  It just goes to show how easy it is to make a healthy lunch at home to bring to work.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Chobani Champions WINNERS!!!

We are so happy to be able to share all four varieties of Chobani Champions with three lucky winners!

1. Tracy Kerchner

2. katieculpepper


Please e-mail me your name and address by Friday, August 17th at 12pm EST, or new winners will be chosen.

Thanks again and don't forget to put Chobani Champions in your child's lunch box when they go back to school.  It is a great source of calcium and protein, plus it is really tasty!

If you didn't win, grab a coupon and check your local grocery store. 

Friday, August 10, 2012

And the Funky Monkey Winner Is......

Thanks to all who entered our Funky Monkey Giveaway!  They are on sale at Target until September 1st so if you did not win, you can get some at a discount. ☺

And the Winner Is.........
Anonymous, with the comment:

Anonymous said...
I follow Molly's lunch box on

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Fast and Fun Lunches with Chobani Champions

If you read Molly's Lunch Box often, you know how much we LOVE our Chobani Champions.  We were lucky enough to do a guest post for them with their "Win The Day" theme.  If you want to try Chobani Champions, keep reading.  There is something special at the bottom of this post!

As a Mother of three young kids, I am beyond grateful for every little win of every day.  Whether it is the successful reading of a book, a play date without drama or even a good potty day while potty training, they are all little smiles on my face that I am thankful for. 
I think that it is important to give those little wins back too.  In my blog, Molly’s Lunch Box, I strive to make a fun healthy lunch for my daughter, and soon her sister too.  Molly had a very difficult time with separation anxiety in Kindergarten and making these little boxes of love from home helped her tremendously.  That sprung into an almost daily routine for us.
*pit cherries for young children.
*my kids love their Chobani Champions frozen in silicon molds for fun shapes.

I am often asked how I have the time to make these cute lunches daily.  Many of my readers think that it is beyond time consuming.  Honestly, making the lunches rarely takes a long time.  If you have a plan and the right tools, it usually doesn’t take more than 10 minutes to put a smile on your child’s face and give them a win for the day.
I divide our lunches into a main entrée (sandwich, salad, wrap, etc.), a vegetable, a fruit and a dairy/dessert (that’s where Chobani Champions fits in perfectly!).  I usually have an idea of what to make, based on what is in the refrigerator.  I get out my cookie cutters and cute little cupcake picks to jazz it up a bit and BOOM, fun healthy lunch and a happy kid.  Plus, my kids will eat more if something is cut into a fun shape.  There is something about finger foods and kids that works together so well.
Here is a great “for instance” back to school lunch.  A classic peanut butter (or sunflower seed butter if there are restrictions at your child’s school) and jelly sandwich.  I used a cookie cutter to make a cute shape.  (10 extra seconds)  I chopped a carrot and used a Japanese vegetable cutter to cut that into a fun shape.  (30 extra seconds)  An apple seemed like a great choice for back to school so I used a small cookie cutter to cute a heart out of the skin. (15 extra seconds)  I then added Chobani Champions Verry Berry, which is a great source of protein and calcium.  (I probably saved a few seconds there.J)  Finally, I added a few back to school themed picks just for fun.  (30 extra seconds)  All told, it took just over a minute more than if I were to make just a pb&j, cut up a carrot, halve and core an apple and add some Chobani Champions.  The smiles that come home after school are COMPLETELY worth it.  My kids may have lots of other little wins for the day but I know that even if their day is bad, their lunch is a win. J
If you want to try this and start out small, try making an after school snack.  That too will put a smile on your child’s face.
*There are some lunches on my blog that did take more than 10 minutes but those are mostly for special occasions. 
*I make most of the lunches after the kids go to bed.

Chobani Champions makes making lunches a lot easier.  If you'd like to try them right away, they have coupons on their website.  Or if you want to try them for free, we are giving away a variety pack (all 4 flavors) of Chobani Champions to 3 of our lucky readers.  To enter...

1. Leave a comment and tell me what your favorite lunch was when you were in school. (Mandatory)

2. Like Molly's Lunch Box on Facebook and tell me that you did.

3. Share this blog post on your Facebook page and tell me that you did.

4. Like Chobani Champions on Facebook.

5. Follow Molly's Lunch Box on Pinterest and tell me that you did.

6. Pin this Giveaway on Pinterest and leave the link to the Pin.

Our winners will be chosen at random on Wednesday, August 15th, 2012 at 9am EST.
US residents only, please. 
Thank You and Good Luck!


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