Send your kids to school with a hearty, homemade hot lunch that will keep them warm on cold days and give them energy for an afternoon of learning. A lunchbox thermos is convenient and ideal for carrying leftovers and other hot foods. Warm up a stainless steel thermos with hot water before filling it with food so that the lunch stays warmer longer.
Treat your child to a thermos full of warm, homemade soup for lunch. Fill the thermos with leftovers or make a large batch of soup and serve it over the next few days. Choose hearty and nutritious soups such as chicken noodle, black bean and vegetable, and cream of tomato. Accompany the soup with a sandwich and plenty of crackers to create a well-rounded lunch.
Turn last night's pasta dinner into a satisfying lunch for your child. Fill the thermos with leftover spaghetti and meatballs, cheesy rigatoni or chicken fettuccine Alfredo. Other pasta-inspired hot lunch ideas include tuna casserole, macaroni and cheese, and lasagna. A thermos can also keep cold pasta salads chilled. Toss together leftover plain pasta, veggies and a creamy ranch dressing for a filling lunchtime meal.
For a change of pace, send your child to school with a hot, rather than cold, sandwich. Hot sandwiches are especially satisfying on cold winter days. Fill the thermos with a warm sandwich filling, such as turkey and gravy, roast beef or pulled pork. Include a hamburger or hot dog bun, slices of bread or a roll so the child can build his own sandwich at the lunch table.
Stew or Chili
Use one-pot meal leftovers as convenient school lunches the next day. Fill a child's thermos with homemade chili or stew for a taste of home. Prepare the stew using several types of fresh vegetables, such as carrots and potatoes, to make it extra nutritious for your child. Accompany the chili with tortilla chips or crackers.