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10 PERFECT PARK LUNCHES - Love these options for avoiding eating my kids PB&J at the park - esp. the knock-off Starbucks protein box!

Ten Perfect Lunches For the Park

Are you spending most of your summer days at the park or the pool this summer?

Instead of picking up pricey lunches on the go, try packing up something quick and healthy at home before you go!

Here are ten ideas for park lunches to get you through the long summer days.

  1. Sandwiches with a Twist. Leave the peanut butter and jelly behind and try something new, like these Roasted Zucchini and Ricotta Sandwiches (pictured above).
  2. Less Mess Chicken Salad. Pack your favorite chicken salad recipe into a pita pocket for easy eating. We like this Honey Barbecue Chicken Salad.
  3. Cold Noodle Salads. Make a big batch of noodles ahead, then just grab your chopsticks and go! Try this Chinese Noodle Salad with Citrus, Snow Peas and Spicy Cashews.
  4. Lunch on A Stick. Putting food on a stick makes it easily portable for kids to run around the park with just make sure they don’t poke anyone in the eye when they’re through eating! These Sandwich Skewers look perfect.
  5. Hand Pies and Empanadas. These will take a little prep up front, but you can make a large batch, freeze and then pull them out as needed. Give these basic Chicken Empanadas a try.
  6. Quiche and Tarts. These are great options for the park because they can be served warm or cold and you can pack them with lots of protein to keep you going until nap time. I’m drooling over these Quick and Easy Tomato Basil Tarts!
  7. Non-Sushi Sushi Rolls. You could bring along some real sushi, of course, but if you’ve got picky little people, try rolling up something a little more kid-friendly. Try these Carrot Cake and Zucchini Bread Sushi Rolls.
  8. Protein Box. This is the perfect option if you’re running late or didn’t think about lunch ahead of time. Chop up some fruit and veggies, add some cheese, crackers, nuts/nut butter, hard-boiled eggs if you’ve got them and you’re set. Check out this Skinny Starbucks Protein Bistro Box for inspiration. (Pictured above.)
  9. Spring Rolls. You can wrap up anything in rice paper and call it lunch. I love the idea of these BLT Spring Rolls, yum! (Pictured above.)
  10. Fruity Salads. Fresh fruit is a must for your picnic lunch. Add it to a green salad for an extra nutritional boost. I think this Mango, Strawberry and Avocado Salad would be perfect with a little grilled chicken on top. (Pictured above).
 

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Natalie is lover of all things edible and mom to two sweet babies under 3 years old. She shares her favorite from-scratch recipes, techniques and tips for entertaining on her blog, Oven Love.

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