The new school year is just about here and that means one thing for us parents: back to school shopping time! Even though we’ve been packing lunches for a few years now, it can still be overwhelming to choose the right lunch gear for our kiddos.
We look for a few things:
- A good value and high quality items that we don’t have to replace in a few years
- Kid-safe products that are free of BPA and PVC
- Functional items that help us get healthier lunches ready each day without a fuss
- Ease of opening and closing for little fingers that never have enough time to finish lunch, especially if they struggle with opening a container
- Durable items that won’t leak
So, ready to learn what products pass our test? We’ve got our list below, and are sharing from a few friends this year as well. Have something to add? Let us know in the comments section.
Thermos Food Storage Jar
Built for maximum temperature retention & comes in a variety of designs like Hello Kitty and Toy Story that your kids will love taking to school. None of our lunch gear gets as much use as our Thermos Jars and they’re in brand-new shape two years later.
LunchBots Stainless Steel Food Container
LunchBots are great for foods that don’t need to stay warm or cold all day and come in a variety of configurations. The Duo is great for keeping things like a sandwich and wet grapes separate.
Rubbermaid LunchBlox Kits and Boxes
Rubbermaid has containers in a variety of sizes, kits, colors and shapes to build your own configuration based on your child’s lunch bag. They’re good to go in the dishwasher and microwave which makes them easy to clean and totally versatile!
Sistema Klip It Sandwich Box
We try to avoid foil or plastic wrap on sandwiches but my kids still love to take them to school when we don’t have leftovers around. These Sistema sandwich containers are perfectly sized for a full sized sandwich and easy for the little ones to remove the lid. There’s many other sizes of containers you’ll see at the Details link below.
SNACK REUSABLE BAGS
LunchSkins Reusable Bag
Dual-purpose pack comes in sizes for sandwiches or snacks with plenty of designs to choose from. My favorite thing about these bags (besides the fact that we’re not using plastic bags!) is that I can toss them in the dishwasher when the kids come home.
These stainless steel bottles are easy to clean, durable, toxin-free, and non-leaching. They come in a variety of colors, sizes and configurations so you’re sure to find one to meet your needs. We’ve been tossing ours in the dishwasher for 5+ years and the lid still seals tight!
Stylish, Swiss-engineered water bottle comes in a variety of sizes, lids and designs. We’ve had Sigg’s around our house longer than I can remember?
Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Bottle
If you haven’t seen or used a Hydro Flask bottle, I am soooooo thrilled to introduce you! I’ve used one for more than four years when my company ordered some for client gifts. They are amazing! My coffee is just as hot as when I put it in the bottle, hours later. And when I make iced chai lattes in the morning, there’s still ice at the end of the day! We each have one in our house, and a couple Hydro Flask growlers for beer and kombucha. My kids love that they actually have cold water all day long. There’s a few different lids, including one with a straw that my son likes.
Other Fun Stuff
Silicone Baking Cups
I love putting grapes, cut carrots, nuts or other small items inside the cup, and then lining them up in our sandwich box. This year, I bought the bigger pack because I also plan to make egg muffins to make weekday breakfasts even tastier!
What’s missing from this list? Let us know your favorite lunch gear.
Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links.