10 Super-Easy Back-to-School Lunch Ideas

10 Super-Easy Back-to-School Lunch Ideas

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Meghan Splawn
Aug 30, 2018
(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

One of my personal goals for back-to-school lunches is to prep more big-batch recipes over the weekend so that packing is faster throughout the week. Sometimes it might be as elaborate as a batch of muffins, or other times it might be a two- or three-ingredient salad, but each has to last all week in the fridge or freezer and keep in a lunch box too. Here are 10 of the easy lunch recipes on my list for back to school.

1. Zucchini Pesto Pizza Rolls

Buy store-bought pizza dough and pesto and this recipe takes just 10 minutes to put together. Plus, what kid isn't excited about pizza in their lunch box?

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman | Kitchn)

2. How To Make the Easiest Pasta Salad

My family has loved this pasta salad this summer and I can attest to its staying power. A big batch keeps well for up to a week, if it lasts that long.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

3. Ham and Cheddar Lunch Box Muffins

An upgrade on that classic lunch box sandwich, these muffins freeze well so plan on making a double batch and throwing them into the freezer for future lunch boxes.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

4. The Best Pesto Chicken Salad

I've never been a huge fan of classic chicken salad for lunch boxes, so this pesto version is ideal for a protein-rich sandwich or wrap filler.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

5. Roasted Sweet Potato Wraps with Caramelized Onions and Pesto

My onion-averse 6-year-old is very into these wraps and I love that they are vegetable-filled. Roast a big batch of sweet potatoes and you can have these wraps all week.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

6. Chickpea and Cheddar Quesadillas

One thing to love about these Crunch Wrap-inspired quesadillas is that they can do double duty as a bus-stop breakfast in the morning too. Because they are wrapped in a circle you don't have to worry about the filling falling out either.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

7. Tomato Chickpea Salad

I've made this salad so frequently recently that I worry my children will get tired of it, but their lunch boxes always come home with this particular salad devoured! I'll be switching out the chickpeas with white beans soon for a new twist on this favorite.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

8. Pesto Tortellini Pasta Salad

If you have a noodle-obsessed kiddo, this pasta salad is for you. Using store-bought pesto and store-bought tortellini means you only have to boil water and slice some tomatoes.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

9. BBQ Ranch Chicken Bites

This chicken nugget alternative is just as tasty hot or cold, so making a big batch of lunches is a no-brainer. Bonus points if you serve them with each for dipping.

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

10. Loaded Breakfast Muffins

These breakfast-for-dinner muffins are the perfect sweet and savory combo for lunches. And while they might take a little more time to prep than, say, those BBQ ranch bites above, they also freeze well so you can make a big batch for future lunches.

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