Clean Lunch Menu for March Week 2 – Protein

Hello All!

Sorry, it has been awhile!  Why is it that Life can get in the way of the stuff we really want to do? However, no dwelling on that, let’s get on with this week!

When my daughter was in kindergarten, in a class that was seemingly full of different allergies, to simplify things the teacher suggested that everyone just send veggies for snack time.  Well, that is a great suggestion, but my children have always required some amount of whole protein a few times a day.

Protein is important to all the functions of our bodies from fighting illness to muscle development and movement.  If a body doesn’t get a certain amount of protein each day, even the simplest of activities can be exhausting.  The average person requires between 40-70grams of protein each day, and if you are physically active, you will require more.  The more active your child’s day is, the more likely they are to require additional protein in their lunch while away from home.  My own children are used to protein offered with every meal or snack, so I incorporate this into their lunches for school as well.  My son plays basketball at school, so on days with practice before school or games afterwards, I adjust his lunch accordingly.  For my daughter, who skates  almost every day (sometimes for as long as 3 hours), I usually provide her with another whole meal after school, and then snacks for during her skating session.

Complete proteins are provided in animal products, such as meat, chicken, dairy, eggs and fish.  Incomplete proteins come from plants and it is best to pair two from different groups (so whole grains and leafy dark green veggies) when eating them.  Spinach salad, made with dark green spinach leaves, and barley with raw nuts is an example.  Quinoa is an example of a whole protein from plants, and makes a delicious addition to salads or for use in place of rice or pasta.

This week’s menu involves ensuring adequate protein sources in yours or your child’s lunch for the day.

Happy Packing!

Packable:

Monday: Chicken salad wraps with spinach; oatmeal cookie, apple, cottage cheese

Tuesday: Turkey-tortellini soup with baby bok choy, vanilla greek yogurt with frozen berries, cranberry-quinoa bar, raw veggies

Wednesday: Spinach salad with Tuna (yes, my kids eat this one with Maple Mustard vinaigrette or low fat ranch dressing), homemade applesauce, carrot sticks, plain greek yogurt with honey and kiwi; cheddar cheese squares, oatmeal cookie (for before basketball game)

Thursday: Turkey chili quesadillas, blueberry muffin, orange slices, apple, lemon coconut protein bar(for after basketball practice)

Friday: Roasted veggie and Feta cheese wraps, 3 Bean salad, banana, flaxseed chocolate chip cookie

Daycare:

Monday: Lentil soup with toasted whole wheat bagel

Tuesday: Turkey tortellini soup with baby bok choy

Wednesday: Ham and pea “fried” rice with scrambled egg

Thursday: Turkey chili quesadillas with veggie sticks

Friday: Tuna noodle casserole

Enjoy!

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Clean Lunch Menu for February Week #1 – Wraps

Hello!  I am sorry that this is a bit late this weekend!  We have been so busy since Friday, for now we are 6!  Our newest student has arrived to join our family until the end of June.  So, with that and all the other activities that normally fill the weekend, unfortunately, this got bumped.  However, here it is and hopefully, not too late for most of you!

I had some helpers this week.  It is always great to get the eaters involved in pulling together the menu for the week.  When I asked for suggestions, I got “Wraps, wraps and more wraps.”  “Unless there are leftovers!” piped my 11 year old.

Wraps became very popular in our house around the time my daughter went to grade 1 (she is now in grade 4).  She doesn’t really like standard bread (well, she would I suppose if her mother bought white bread), but loves flatbreads.  To prep your pantry for wraps, you want to think of a few things: flatbreads, first of all, or tortillas: choose whole grain ones.  You can usually find them in two places in the grocery store: the bread aisle, and also in the refrigerator case.  I used to think they only kept the corn ones in the cold area, but then I took a closer look and realised that the organic, no additive ones are also kept there.  Hmmm.  By the way, if you pick up these ones, keep them in the fridge once you bring them home as well.

Next, your fillings: you want lean protein and some sort of veggies.  My hubby’s favourite wrap is made with leftover curry chicken and rice.  I always find it a bit odd that carbs are wrapped around carbs, but it is his lunch!  Filling wraps is a great way to use up leftover salad.  My favourite is leftover chicken breast, with Greek salad and a little bit of tzatziki.

Last thing: how do you pack it?  If the wraps are not too messy (unlike the ones I have just described above), you can roll, cut in half and put both halves side by side in a standard sandwich box.  Sometimes I tuck some veggie sticks in beside to keep them from rolling around.  Messier wraps require a bit more planning: use wax paper or parchment paper, large enough to cover the wrap (I estimate about 6 inches longer than the flatbread, and I always have lots).  Then using a slightly smaller piece of aluminum foil.  Put the parchment on top of the aluminum, place the wrap in the middle of the parchment, diagonally.  Bring one corner over the wrap and tuck it under.  Then continue rolling until the parchment is fully around the wrap (being careful as some of the filling will fall out the top).  Twist the bottom of the parchment.  Fold over the other end.  Repeat with the foil, only do not twist the foil, fold it up at the bottom and at the top.  By the way, this is a great way to pack wraps for the freezer.  But I only do that with ones that have cooked veggies in them, never fresh ones.

Happy Packing!

Packable:

Monday: Roasted veggie and hummus wraps, cottage cheese, apple, cranberry oat bran muffin

Tuesday: Tuna salad wraps (put the tuna into a lettuce leaf first, to keep the wrap from getting too wet), 3 bean salad, cheddar cheese blocks, orange slices, ginger cookie

Wednesday: BLT wraps with chicken, mini blueberry muffins, veggie sticks, kiwi

Thursday: Santa Fe salad wraps with Salmon, frozen berries, vanilla yogurt, oatmeal chocolate chip cookie, apple

Friday: Spinach salad wraps with lentil soup, rice cakes, fruit salad (frozen strawberries, peach and pineapple), apple

Daycare:

Shepherd’s pie

Tuna wraps (lettuce cut up small, so it is easier for little teeth)

Turkey sausage, with peas and brown rice

Lentil soup and cheese sandwich

Peanut butter and banana roll-ups with vegetable soup

 

Enjoy!

Kim

Clean Lunch Menu for January week #3

Hello!  This is a little bit later than I wanted, but we were at the rink for 6:30am (add a 55 minute drive to that and we left the house just shortly after 5:15!).  I laughed when the radio DJ said, “good morning to you and thanks for joining us this early on a Saturday morning.  Where are you headed?  Figure skating? Hockey?  Or maybe off for a workout before the family gets up?”  It left me wondering if he saw me out the window as I drove past.  Yes, we were headed to skating.  Back home now and on with the day!

Enjoy!

Packable:

Monday: Twice baked Taco Potatoes, apple, pear, Blueberry spelt muffin

Tuesday: Buffalo chicken and spinach wraps, veggie sticks with yogurt, kiwi and frozen berries

Wednesday: Veggie and roasted red pepper hummus wraps, cottage cheese, orange slices, ginger cookie

Thursday: Tuna quesadillas with salsa, yogurt with frozen berries, apple-spice protein bars (this recipe comes up this week!  so excited to share!)

Friday: A Better Chinese New Year soup (from Clean Eating Magazine, Jan/Feb 2013)

R is for...Recipe!

Daycare:

Monday: Vegetable soup with Cheese quesadilla

Tuesday: Cleaned up Peanut butter and Jam sandwich (from Tosca Reno’s book: The Eat Clean Diet for Family & Kids, page 231) with homemade tomato soup – my current Daycare gang are Peanut butter junkies, and they always ask for Jam with their peanut butter… so I am subbing thawed (and drained) and mashed frozen berries

Wednesday: “Hamburger” Soup (your hamburger soup recipe made with Yves’ Regular Veggie Ground round)

Thursday: Tuna Quesadillas with veggie sticks

Friday: Quick turkey bolognese with whole wheat pasta

Happy Packing!

Kim