How to Pack Healthy School Lunches: Tuesday

Today’s featured lunch comes to us from Samantha Vargas Poppe, Associate Director of the NCLR Policy Analysis Center. Samantha’s daughter, Abigail, is a first-grader who needs a healthy meal to get her through the day. She packs Abigail’s lunch the night before to avoid any last minute scrambling on busy mornings, and she prepares fresh fruits on Sunday–Wednesday nights to have ready-to-eat nutritious additions to breakfast or lunch, or for an after-school snack throughout the week.

Here’s what Samantha packed for Abigail today:


  • Whole wheat crackers
  • Low-fat white cheddar cheese
  • Turkey pepperoni (lower fat and lower sodium than traditional pork)
  • Mango slices
  • Carrots
  • Fat free strawberry Greek yogurt tube
  • Water

Helpful Tip: Follow the recommended portions for children. It can be confusing to figure out how much food your child is supposed to eat, especially when restaurants often present us with large portions that do not reflect dietary recommendations. The USDA is set to release their 2015 recommendations later this year. For now, check out these American Heart Association recommendations that promote heart health for different age groups.

Be sure to check back here tomorrow for another nutritious meal to pack for your children.

Read all our helpful tips for packing healthy school lunches.

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