Back-to-school time is creeping upon us, which means that it will soon be time again for bedtimes, homework, lots of new school supplies, and life falling back into more of a routine. One of those school time routines that Molly has grown to love is taking her lunch to school. While she eats the majority of her lunches as school hot lunches, she meticulously plans out her days of taking her own lunch to school at the beginning of each month when the school lunch menus come home.
Even though Molly tends to enjoy the school lunches, she loves deciding on what she’ll eat and then packing up her lunch. She tries to come up with lots of creative ideas to make her lunch fun, and I often find her grabbing out things like our special sandwich cutter (that turns a regular sandwich into two dinosaurs).
One of her complaints, however, is that she enjoys drinking milk with her lunch, but then that means waiting in line with the kids getting hot lunches just to get and pay for her milk. This means that, sometimes, she opts to take juice to drink just so she can head straight to her lunch table. She was very excited when we got to try out the perfect-for-lunch boxes, and other single serving situations, 12 oz Shamrock Farms on-the-go mmmmilk bottles, which include a choice of chocolate, white, and strawberry milk.
One of the recipes we made was the No Bake Energy Bites. Molly decided on a couple of modifications that she wanted to make. Yep, that’s right. She checked out the recipe and decided that she wanted to make it all on her own. To make that happen, we used regular flake coconut that was not toasted. She also decided on mini chocolate chips instead of regular ones. Lastly, she decided she wanted to add some chia seeds.
Molly’s Modified No Bake Energy Bites
- ½ cup mini chocolate chips
- 1 cup flaked coconut
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup peanut butter (though any nut butter would work)
- 1 cup dry oatmeal
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl until well blended. These can be difficult to blend well, but I suggested to Molly that she mix it with her (clean!) hands when she was running into difficulty.
2. Roll mixture into balls. You may need to add another tablespoon or less of the nut butter, if you have too much difficulty binding dry ingredients together.
3. Chill the energy balls in the refrigerator until they are firm.
We thought that another fabulous addition to the lunch was fruit kabobs. To make them easier to fit in a small plastic storage container, we opted to thread fresh fruit onto 4-inch sucker sticks that we had. This also meant there were no pointed ends. Score!
In addition to the No Bake Energy Balls and Fruit Kabobs, we rounded out the meal with string cheese, a few crackers, and a 12 oz Shamrock Farms 2% Strawberry Milk. Although we are sharing the meal by showing it on a plate, these are all things that could be easily packed up in Molly’s insulated lunch bag with a cold pack.
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