I love the idea of bento box lunches. In fact, I think you could put anything in that bento box and I would eat for lunch. Because who doesn’t love cute, compartmentalized food?
But if I’m being honest with myself (and with you), I’m never going to be that Pinterest-inspired mom who packs a quinoa salad, hummus, and organic baby carrots for her precious child to take to school. In fact, I’m lucky if I get up early enough just to throw together a sandwich.
Truth be told, my son actually wouldn’t eat quinoa salad. He’d probably eat hummus but he’d only eat the carrots sticks if I provided enough ranch dressing so that he could no longer taste the carrot sticks. So I do what I have to do to pack him a mostly nutritious lunch that I know he’ll eat. And it usually ends up looking like this.
Why, yes, that is my own artistic handiwork and, yes, I do frequently send my son off to school with peanut butter and jelly. In my defense, let me add that I use bread made with 100% stone ground whole wheat flour, all natural peanut butter (the kind that requires stirring), and jelly sweetened only with fruit juice.
Take THAT, Bento Box Moms!!!
My guilt, however, creeps in once in a while and I wonder if Evan is getting enough protein and if he has enough variety in his diet. And when I’m feeling that way, he gets a ham and cheese sandwich. Even when I give him turkey and cheese, it is still considered “ham and cheese” because he won’t eat turkey willingly unless he thinks it’s ham.
You know you’d do the same thing.
The problem is knowing the right kind of lunchmeat to buy. I typically avoid the prepackaged lunchmeats because I worry about the sodium, nitrates, and other preservatives. But even when I head to the deli counter, I don’t always have insights as to the fat, sodium, or even the preservatives that are used in some of the meats. And these days, that’s what’s most important to me.
I’m not so much of a label reader anymore as I am an ingredient reader. If I don’t know what is actually in the product, I try to stay away from it. For this reason, I’m glad to see the trend toward all natural, no preservative, prepackaged lunchmeat, like the new Naturals line from Hillshire Farms.
There’s only one problem. I haven’t actually tried any of them yet. I don’t normally write about stuff that I haven’t experienced on my own but as you can imagine, getting samples of lunchmeat sent overnight can have some logistical problems. So instead, I have some coupons for some complimentary lunchmeat.
Even with mustard, the coupons don’t taste that good so I’m going to have to try to find them somewhere (they weren’t at one of my local stores). But I was encouraged to see that there are many lines of natural lunchmeats, with no preservatives, on the shelf which is a trend I’m happy with.
Watch my Facebook page and Instagram account and I promise that when I try the Hillshire Farms Naturals, you’ll see the evidence. And if you’re mom like me, just remember that the best lunch for your kid is the one you pack, no matter what it is!
Hillshire Farm® has launched its new Hillshire Farm Naturals™ line, just in time for the back-to-school season!
- Available in four varieties: Slow Roasted Turkey Breast, Hardwood Smoked Turkey Breast, Honey Roasted Ham and Black Forest Ham
- Packaged in double-sealed, re-sealable tubs for maximum freshness, but they also contain no artificial ingredients, preservatives, colors or added nitrites/nitrates.
- Slow roasted and perfectly seasoned. All of that makes this new lunchmeat safe, healthy and delicious.