Back-to-school lunches from Meijer stores

Back-to-school lunches from Meijer stores

Life changes in a moment with those three little words... BACK TO SCHOOL!

A new school year means the return of after-school activities, sports practices, homework and packing lunches.

To make sure your child's lunch offers both variety and health, consider using the 1-2-3 system to provide them the energy and nutrition they need to tackle the rest of their day.

  1. Choose a lean protein and / or dairy item
  2. Add whole wheat or whole grains
  3. Add colorful fruit and vegetables

Use the simple chart as a template to plan lunches for the whole family for the upcoming week. Establishing a go-to list designed with this system in mind sets the stage. And mixing and matching can provide new and fresh lunch combinations for everyone's specific tastes.

  • Protein/Dairy
    • Soy burger and low fat cheese                                                        
  • Whole Grain
    • Wheat bun 
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Lettuce/tomato and 100% juice
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Mozzarella cheese                                                    
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain English muffin with tomato sauce
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Pear, plum or apple
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Lowfat Swiss cheese and turkey                            
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain wrap with lowfat ranch dressing
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Lettuce, cucumber and tomatoes
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Lowfat sharp Cheddar and black beans                   
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain tortilla and salsa
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Whole kernel corn, bell peppers
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Feta cheese and hummus                                                
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain pita bread
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Romaine lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Lowfat cheese and shredded chicken                                  
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole wheat pasta and lowfat balsamic vinaigrette
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Zucchini, summer squash, tomatoes, bell peppers
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Peanut butter or nut butters                                                    
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain bread
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Banana or apple slices
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Lowfat cheese and deli turkey                                            
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain crackers
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Snap peas
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Roast beef and lowfat cheese                                              
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain tortilla
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Spinach and bell peppers
  • Protein/Dairy
    • Chicken salad                                                         
  • Whole Grain
    • Whole grain English muffin
  • Fruit/Veggie
    • Apple

Lunch in a Box (Bento Box)!

The bento box recently has been a popular food trend and a great way to pack a varied and nutritious lunch for kids, especially picky eaters! Customize contents to your child's food likes, but remember to add protein, healthy grain along with fruit and vegetables for a balanced meal.

Fun Bento Fun-Due
Serves 1

  • ¼ cup Meijer nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 teaspoon sunflower seed butter
  • 2 teaspoon True Goodness® by Meijer™ Organic Honey
  • ½ teaspoon True Goodness® by Meijer™ Ground Cinnamon
  • 5 locally grown apple slices
  • 4 strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons lowfat Ranch dressing
  • 2 mini sweet peppers, cut in half
  • 4 broccoli florets
  • 2 slices Hillshire Naturals turkey slices, rolled
  • 1 slice lowfat Colby Jack cheese

1.    Mix yogurt, sunflower seed butter, agave or honey and cinnamon in small bowl.
2.    Assemble remaining ingredients in bento box.

Source: Adapted from Produce for Kids

Nutrition Information (per serving): 442 calories, 14g fat, 740mg sodium, 50g carbohydrate, 9g fiber, 28g protein

Serve with True Goodness® by Meijer™ crackers

Apple-Peanut Butter Sandwich
Serves 1

  • 1 locally grown apple cored, sliced into rings
  • 2 tbsp. True Goodness® by Meijer™ Creamy Peanut Butter*
  • 1 tbsp. True Goodness® by Meijer™ Blueberry Flax Granola
  • 1 tbsp. True Goodness® by Meijer™ Dried Cranberries

1.    Use apple slices as bread. Spread peanut butter on each apple slice.  Sprinkle one slice with granola and cranberries. Top with other apple slice to form sandwich.

*Note: If allergic to peanut butter, try sunflower seed butter, almond butter, or soy butter.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 319 calories, 16g fat, 0mg cholesterol, 72mg sodium, 43g carbohydrate, 7g fiber, 8g protein

Serve with Sugar Snap Peas, True Goodness® by Meijer™ Oatmeal Animal Cookies and Horizon Organic lowfat milk


Use larger beverage cups with lids to create fun lunchbox salads such as a traditional layered salad or our delicious layered taco salad. Clean up is easy, just toss the cup into a recycle bin and run off to recess!

Layered Taco Salad
Serves 4

  • 4 cups Dole Romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 1 (15 oz.) can True Goodness® by Meijer™ Canned Low Sodium Black Beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 cup True Goodness® by Meijer™ Canned Organic Sweet Whole Kernel Corn, rinsed, drained
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • ½ cup shredded Meijer 2% Milk Mexican Cheese Blend
  • ½ cup True Goodness® by Meijer™ Salsa
  • True Goodness® by Meijer™ Organic Blue Corn Tortilla Chips

1.    In each of 4 16 oz. cups layer in order lettuce, beans, avocado, corn, tomato and cheese.
2.    Serve with tortilla chips and salsa.

Nutrition Information (per 1 cup serving): 211 calories, 8g fat, 7mg cholesterol, 501mg sodium, 26g carbohydrate, 7g fiber, 9g protein


Very Veggie Soup

  • 1 Can (14.5 oz.) Vegetable Soup, add 1 Cup Meijer frozen vegetables such as cut green beans or Edamame and heat through.
  • Pre-heat thermos with very hot tap water or boiling water; let stand one minute then empty water.  Add hot soup and seal tightly.
  • To make it a meal, add:
  • Whole grain Goldfish Crackers
  • Meijer reduced fat string cheese
  • Fresh Michigan apple
  • Horizon Organic Milk box

Beefy Noodle Soup

Servings: 6

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups True Goodness® by Meijer™ beef broth
  • 1 14.5-ounce can sliced carrots, drained
  • 2 cups green beans (canned, drained or frozen-thawed)
  • 1 14.5-ounce can no salt added stewed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 cup cooked egg noodles

1.    In 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, in hot oil, cook ground beef until well browned on all sides, stirring frequently. 
2.    With slotted spoon, remove beef to bowl. 
3.    In drippings remaining in saucepan over medium heat, cook onion and garlic until tender-crisp. 
4.    Add beef broth, carrots, green beans, stewed tomatoes, basil and ground beef; over high heat, heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes to blend flavors, stirring occasionally. Stir in cooked egg noodles.

Calories: 250, Total fat: 11g, Saturated fat: 3.5g, Cholesterol: 55mg, Sodium: 240mg, Carbohydrate: 19g, Sugar: 8g, Fiber: 4g, Protein: 18g.

Adapted from: