I prepped these tips for an event at our son’s elementary school. It’s the brain-child of a good friend of ours, and I’m excited to be a part of it. The concept it simple: get kids and families thinking about how to live a healthy life.

It starts with you, and ends with the community. Like many things in life, when you have the support of those around you, the choices in life are easier. When we feel that warm, supportive arm of a friend or loved one wrapped around us, it helps us to feel confident that we can achieve our dreams. Even if the dream is as simple as finding more organization in your life, or as life changing as a goal of improved health. grain-free lunchbox

So I thought I would share these tips here as well. I hope you find them useful in helping you achieve a balance of healthy lunch solutions that won’t break your (limited) time or budget. Good luck!


Healthy Lunch Box Ideas

If you’re like most parents, it’s about all you can do to get your kids out the door on time each morning, without the pressure of making sure you’ve packed a healthy, wholesome lunch too. And while we would love to rely on the quality of foods in our schools, the reality is there just isn’t enough funding available to make sure we are providing Organic, healthy and non-processed foods for our children.

However, the health and well being of our children is our top priority, so it’s becoming more apparent that we need to control what our kids eat.

Here are some quick tips for keeping your kids happy, and filled with healthy and delicious foods everyday that won’t create more stress in your morning routine:

  1. Pack all school meals the night before you need them. The mornings are way too busy to deal with lunch packing. This is key, folks!
  2. Avoid processed foods – try to focus on foods free of refined sugars
  3. Skip the dessert – it causes cravings, sugar crashes and brain fog
  4. Use your own intuition to find what works best for you and your family
  5. Opt for organic whenever possible


Here’s what a low cost, balanced meal plan could look like:

  • Sandwich (nitrate free, nitrite free lunch meat or Organic nut butter and jelly)
  • Fresh fruit (sliced apples, melon or grapes are easy)
  • Nut butter or Hummus and crackers for dipping
  • Granola
  • Low sugar granola type bar (we like Larabar, Kind Bars, Thunderbird Energetica)
  • Salad (we pack a salad with pre-mixed lettuce, carrots and cucumbers and O&V dressing)


Remember, prepare your meals the night before they’re needed and you will have a (relatively) stress free morning!




I used to go through life without thinking much about things. I wasn’t much of a planner at all; in fact, I was both irked by, and in awe of, people who were. How could they so confidently know what they were going to want in a few days, a week or even months? I had the hardest time picking a major in college because I couldn’t imagine that I knew at 19 years old what I was going to do for the rest of my life.

My reality today?  Having food allergies means I have now become the biggest planner.

I can’t count on the ease of quick grab-n-go type foods since they typically contain ingredients I can’t eat, so I end up bringing snacks with me everywhere. I’ve become one of those people who eats dinner for breakfast (avoiding grains, dairy and eggs make breakfast foods near impossible), and I find myself reheating leftovers while my husband and son indulge in my old favorites, including breakfast tacos. Sadly,  I live in Austin and can’t eat breakfast tacos! Speaking of my son, I’m raising a gluten, & dairy free kid which means I have to be prepared much more so than if I could simply rely on a quick drive thru or convenience store for a cure of the hunger pangs.


So, when a friend sent along a link to a book written by a set of Paleo parents trying to help others learn how to live a Paleo life with their children, I quickly bought a copy.  To be honest, raising a child is complicated enough, but when you throw in food allergies or sensitivities  it takes it to a different level.  I want to make sure he doesn’t feel left out, or like the oddball of his friends. So while I now carry the ‘mom bag’ packed with healthy snacks, and Yelp restaurants for allergy-free reviews often, it was nice to read from another set of parents who are living the allergy-free life and making it work!

I agree with the parents behind the book, Eat Like a Dinosaur.  They’ve found a way to make special diets fun for their kids, and they help parents understand how to keep our children safe and healthy. By following a modified Paleo diet, they have helped heal their children from various auto-immune conditions, which is so important in preventing a series of much scarier health concerns down the line.

What I love about the book?

It focus not just on a Paleo diet, but rather on food allergies in general, and includes old favorites such as cereal, chicken nuggets and waffles, which are all grain-free. Their intent is not on excluding foods, but rather, on eating healthy and delicious ones which mimic the same foods we are accustomed to, but in a healthier version. 

All recipes are free of dairy, wheat, peanuts and soy.

All recipes are labeled so you know if they contain shellfish, tree nuts, fish or eggs.

Many of the recipes are set up to show your kiddos what parts they can help with, so they can help in the process of making these foods that are designed to help them live healthy lives. Plus they get to play a part in making some delish dishes!

It’s so important to help kids feel normal when they’re dealing with something that society has a bit of a stigma about, and I love that these foodie parents went all out to write a cookbook that helps their kids feel completely normal about their special diets.

Here’s a description of the book below and a video clip you can watch as well. I hope this helps you navigate the complexities of a ‘different’ lifestyle choice for you and your family too!