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9 Best proven lunch boxes for children to make meals fun again

Rainbow lunch boxes packed with health & joy

Packing lunch boxes should be a team experience, not a job. Here are the ideal best lunch boxes for children that will make the task effortless and meals fun again! 

Wrapping your children’s school meals in plastic or aluminium paper, is not only NOT fun, but also incredibly unhealthy. It can be overwhelming to see all the waste & trash that it creates. Day after day! So how to get away from this real problem that’s present in every family’s daily life? Lunchboxes.

Lunchboxes can be colourful, big or small, for one meal or two, enough to share or eat whatever that’s left when your little ones wait at the bus stop after a long day at school. In this sense, lunchboxes for children also help us save a lot of waste in single use wrapping plastics as well as food waste.

The fun part of preparing lunch boxes

Preparing the lunch boxes as a little (or big) family team is a way to create memories, and involve your little ones. It educates them in values like positive responsibility, and even better: it makes them inclusive of the input to their days’ lunch box. Ultimately these little rainbow boxes bring joy and satisfaction to all members of the family; not to mention, it builds towards the healthy food habits right from a small age.

Lunch boxes for kids are designed in a way to inspire a variety of foods and enhance creativity with different combinations in a safe and protected manner. Furthermore, it keeps food more fresh, and makes it easier to keep in your school bag or in the classroom’s fridge.

It makes fruits and veggies more appealing, especially if they are seasonal and colourful. If you know your child only eats that apple if it’s cut in pieces, lunchboxes offer you the perfect solution to ensure your kids get their daily dose of vitamins and minerals.

How can you get your kids involved in the preparation of their lunch box?

  • Talk to your kids about what they’d love to have in their lunch box. Involve them in the decisions so that they can build on their own independence, responsibility, and ultimately, their personality. 
  • Write the shopping list together. By doing so they feel engaged in the chore of going to the supermarket. They get to join you in the grocery shopping with a more positive attitude, knowing they also get to choose (and probably you’ll save in some supermarket dramas that may arise).
  • Encourage your little ones to help prepare their lunchboxes with you. It gives parents and their children a meaningful task together, and being participative over food choices. Knowing they’ve prepared the lunch box will build on self-confidence and eat their choice of food with joy!

Lunch boxes meals ideas

What typically goes in a lunch box has not been written yet. It depends on how far your imagination goes! 

From the list of healthy food that can be included in lunch boxes, here are some of the ever-winners:

  • Fruit: apricots, grapes, watermelon, blueberries, oranges, strawberries… or any choice of dried fruit
  • Vegetables: carrot sticks + dips; alternatively cucumber, capsicum, cherry tomatoes… 
  • Cereals & grains: sandwiches or wraps packed with a variety of healthy ingredients (including salads…)
  • Other vegetarian and/or vegan options: boiled egg, cheese, yoghourt…
  • Sweets: self made biscuits, muffins, cakes, popcorn,…
  • Drinks: preferably water in a reusable water bottle 😉

The benefits of preparing children’s meals in lunchboxes

Think of the savings: food waste, money & time!

When you’re choosing lunch boxes above single use wrapping options, you will be saving a lot of money. Think about all those plastic films and aluminium rolls you won’t have to purchase ever again. You’ll also save some time, as lunch boxes simply make the morning rush easier for everyone! 

If you choose the right lunchbox for your children’s age, you’ll also save on food waste and you’ll find it easier to assess the ideal lunch size for your little one. The portions will mostly be aimed at primary school kids but you can ‘size down’ for little ones at daycare or ‘size up’ for bigger kids and even grown ups.

Lunch boxes can be prepared for the entire day: breaky, lunch and afternoon snacks. Surely, one of the first things your kids ask for when coming home from school is: “Mum/Dad, can I have something to eat”! That’s when lunch boxes stay handy, as right on the car on their way home, they get to open their boxes and enjoy what they had helped prepare the day before. 

The individual positive impact of lunch boxes: saving towards the environment

Many of the local elementary schools are working hard to teach the children of our community the importance of protecting the environment. Since their kindergarten days, children are being taught repeatedly the phrase, “reduce, reuse, recycle.” Over the past few years, with children taking the lead, families keep making changes in their daily lives to do their part to protect and conserve our environment – locally and globally.

Single-use Packaging Waste

According to the EPA, the typical American school kid creates 67 pounds (30 kgs) of discarded lunch packaging waste per nine-month school year. That’s more than 18,000 pounds (8 tonnes) of waste in plastic, paper, and other non-food materials for just one average-sized elementary school. 

How long does it take plastic to degrate? infographic ourgoodbrands

Unfortunately, most packaging is designed as single-use, and is typically thrown away rather than reused or recycled. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), food and food packaging materials make up almost half of all municipal solid waste.

In 2014, out of the 258 million tons of municipal solid waste generated in the US, more than 63 percent was of packaging materials (for food and other purposes) and, overall, only 35 percent (89 million tons) was recycled or composted. [Source]

Food Waste

According to a 2019 report by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), food waste in U.S. schools could amount to approximately 530,000 tons per year. This includes both food bought at school and brought from home. This roughly translates to 1.9 million metric tons of greenhouse gases from wasted food ending up in landfills.

Best proven lunch boxes for children to make meals fun again
Photo Credit: Omie Box

Best proven lunch boxes for children   

Many kids lunch boxes, plastic containers and plastic wraps contain BPA, PVC, lead and phthalates. One of the nasties to avoid when choosing a kids lunch box is PVC. Often on a soft shiny plastic lunch box there is no label to tell you what it is, but it is more than likely PVC.

Now that you’re convinced about the convenience of lunch boxes to prepare meals for your children at school, let’s explore some of the best brands and options so that we ensure there’s fun and a big rainbow of colours from the inside out!

Pro Tip: Share this page with your friends and family on socials, bookmark it for future occasions. This is a go-to-guide to inspire more people in your circle to embrace a more sustainable way of living!

Top reusable lunch boxes for your little ones!

1. Sinchies

Although not exactly lunchboxes, these pouches Sinchies are sure to encourage healthy eating, reduce waste, cut food costs and provide an easy, fun, clean way to feed your children when out and about.

Sinchies reusable food pouches are designed for feeding”on the run” with no bowl or spoon required. Home-made goodness with store bought convenience! Parents can monitor exactly what goes into the pouch, ensuring their children receive optimum nutirition that is free from preservatives sugars or additives that are often found in pre-packaged foods.

Handy and easy to use – designed with a ziplock at the top for easy filling and a side spout so you can suck or pour the contents out. Simply mix up your own home-made goodness, healthy snacks, baby food, yoghurt, smoothie or fruit crusher, pour it in and zip it up. Young children can enjoy feeding themselves through the handy spout which allows them to suck or squeeze out their snacks and meals. 

Made free from BPA, Phthalates and PVC, these are designed for easy filling and washing, with a double ziplock top to prevent leaks. Sinchies are freezer and dishwasher safe making cleaning and storing easy!

Where from: Australia

Certifications: BPA-free – Made Safe

2. Biome

Biome is a toxin free, zero waste, cruelty free, palm oil free marketplace with the aim to helping you live more gently on our planet. Their range of lunch boxes is extensive allowing you to scroll across many options, all in one place. 

Every lunch box and food container at Biome is of a great quality and is sourced from a trusted manufacturer. They’re also made from BPA free plastic, stainless steel or glass. Free from nasties such as Bisphenol A (BPA), Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), Lead, and Phthalates.

Biome’s strict standards give you peace of mind. They carefully research, question and verify each supplier for truth in labelling, safe ingredients, and zero harm to people and our world – right through to the end of a product’s useful life. The brand does not only look at personal health, but what is also good for our wider society and environment.

Where from: Australia

Certifications: Biome is a B Corporation and also certified Palm Oil Free

3. Klean Kanteen

Klean Kanteen works hard to design durable, versatile, affordable products that replace mountains of single-use waste—and last a lifetime.

With their self-developed quality standard, Klean Coat™ guarantees durability and safety for people and planet. It is a chip-resistant, durable Klean Coat finish that is designed with care to stand up to your inspired life.

Easy to clean, durable stainless steel construction and a food-grade silicone lid, Klean lunch boxes won’t retain or impart flavors.

Where from: United States

Certifications: B Corporation, 1% for the Planet, Climate Neutral, BPA-free – Made Safe

4. Yumbox

Yumbox encourages healthy eating habits by making it super easy for everyone to prep and pack a variety of healthy foods. Take Yumbox to school, work, travel, picnics and sports.

Healthy eating and portion control are easy with Yumbox. These bento lunch boxes have pre-portioned food trays that guide you to pack nutritious and hassle-free lunches! Pack just the right portions for kids of all ages and adults.

Easily pack a variety of nutritious foods in Yumbox and your lunch will look inviting and keep you satisfied throughout the day. Find what’s the most convenient option for you, as the products come in a variety sizes, colors and designs.

Where from: United Kingdom

Certifications: BPA-free 

5. Planet Box

Planet Box wants kids to be kids, and so this lunch box comes here to celebrate fun and adventure!

The brand wants to build a community that cultivates healthy habits for the next generation. PlanetBox was founded 10 years ago by parents who were frustrated with single use plastic and looking for a way to simplify lunchtime prep. They worked together to develop a clever solution.

Each of our lunchboxes make it easier for you to pack a meal or snack that you feel good about and that your kids are excited to open up and munch on. Kids need wholesome food and hydration to stay curious and make everyday fun.

This is why Planet Box design team is dedicated to developing a range of eco-friendly and durable products. They’re made from non-toxic food safe materials, like high quality stainless steel, which makes it easy breezy to clean up! Snack. Lunch. Adventure.

Where from: United States

6. Omie Life

Omie Life is the first and only kids bento box that stores hot and cold food – making it easy to create nutritious and delicious meal options!

The brand’s mission is to create thoughtful products that make healthy lifestyles effortless, they are crazy passionate about making real, everyday tasks simpler. Packing homemade lunches for your kids 180 days a year? That’s the real stuff. They do it right by making a lunch container that packs hot and cold food together.

The story behind this innovative product is of a picky eater and his mom. When founder Nancy Yen’s son started preschool, he had a tough time at lunch. He missed the warm meals he was used to at home, plus he needed help opening container and laying out his lunch. After umpteen uneaten lunches and the daunting prospect of facing a cranky toddler at pick up, Nancy decided it was time to reinvent how kids bring lunch to school. What began as an invention of necessity is now OmieLife – a company whose mission is to solve real problem through innovative solutions.

Where from: United States

Best proven lunch boxes for children to make meals fun again
Photo Credit: Omie Box
Best proven lunch boxes for children to make meals fun again
Best proven lunch boxes for children to make meals fun again

7. Go Green Lunch Box

Go Green Lunch Box was founded simply out of “frustration.” The founder and a busy mum packing two lunches everyday, she was appalled at the amount of waste generated by the packaging of single-serve items (sandwiches, juices, snacks, desserts, etc.).

After buying food containers and trying, unsuccessfully, to fit all the containers into the lunch boxes they already owned, resulting in either the lids or containers (or both!) not being brought back home from school, she decided to solve the problem… hence, Go Green Lunch Box!

Go Green Lunch Box has a patented “turn n lock” design insures a leak proof seal between the compartments. The O-ring in the lid keeps food fresh and secure in the BPA free plastic box. Furthermore, their roomy 5 compartment box allows you to create healthy portions for your kid’s lunch. Control potions and create an attractive lunch offering.

Where from: United States

8. Bentgo 

Bentgo is the modern and stackable all-in-one bento lunch box solution. At the heart of every lunch box designed is one simple goal: to put healthy meals and snacks at your fingertips so you and your family always have nutritious options available at school, work, or wherever the day takes you.

The lunchboxes are lightweight, portable solutions that are perfect for snacking as well as all-in-one lunch boxes. Available in a wide array of vibrant colors, chic patterns, and fun prints, there’s a lunch box for everyone in your household. Simply pair your favorite container with their ice packs, lunch bags, to-go cups, and dipping containers, and you have all the essentials needed to enjoy deliciousness on the go.

The brand also has a give back model, for which donates 5% to children in need not only in the US, but around the world through our partnership with Feed the Children.

Where from: United States

9. Bentology

Bentology provides the fun and stylish food containers, accessories and menu ideas to make packing on the go meals quick and easy!

The brand believes lunches should be fun and a time when you express your personality. And this is why Bentology is dedicated to making quality, stylish, and fun lunch boxes, bags and accessories that empower kids, parents, and professional woman to express their individual style.

Where from: United States

Best proven lunch boxes for children to make meals fun again

We will continue to keep this blog updated, so if you have a suggestion of a similar sustainably-made lunch boxes for children brands, please share in the comments below!

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