10 Lunchbox ideas that don't feature sandwiches!

Sep 01, 2022Andrea Cummerfield

I’m sure many parents share the struggle of what to put in children’s lunchboxes that is nutritious, keeps them going all day but also will get eaten!  I also know I’m not alone in my children being fussy and not wanting to eat sandwiches – they’ll eat them maybe once a week but not every day (and I can’t argue with that as I don’t want to eat the same thing every day either!).  So over the last 7 or so years of packing school lunches, we’ve come up with a few different lunchbox options that don’t include sandwiches and I thought we’d share for other parents in the same boat! 


  • Home-made sushi - we are often pretty time poor in the morning but after finally investing in a rice cooker a year ago making sushi is a whole load easier and way cheaper than buying store brought!
  • Wraps – we load them up with lettuce, grated carrot, a little grated beetroot, avocado and a protein source such as eggs, tuna or ham.
  • Pasta salad – again an easy go-to especially if we have some cooked left-over pasta in the fridge, we often just add some cherry tomatoes, cold meat and maybe some cheese into it.
  • Dumplings – we normally have a frozen packet or two of store brought dumplings in the freezer which we just pop in our Montii Co Insulated food jars to keep warm
  • Soup (in the winter months) – sometimes store brought, and sometimes if we are lucky enough one of the grandmothers will make and gift us a big batch of good old fashioned minestrone soup (which my children have nicknamed Nanna Grana soup!)
  • Pizza scrolls – this is a recipe that we use from My Kids Lick the Bowl – if you haven’t checked out her website we highly recommend you do so. My kids love these and we just put in whatever we might have in the fridge ie salami, ham, pineapple & of course cheese!
  • Quesadillas – super quick and easy to make, we normally just use whatever wraps we have on hand, add some grated cheese in and whatever else our kids fancy that day!
  • Bread sushi – this one always makes me laugh as my children don’t love sandwiches, however they’ll happily eat flattened bread filled and then rolled up! Some of my kid's favourite fillings are Salmon & Cream Cheese or Ham and avocado but you can even make them sweet with a little peanut butter or honey & banana.
  • Pizza kebabs – we’ll often just pop some cherry tomatoes, little cubes of cheese, slices of capsicum, squares of pepperoni on a stick
  • Homemade pizzas – we just use pita breads or english muffins, a little pizza sauce, some veges (ie capsicum, tomato, corn), some cold meats, pineapple – again it just depends on what’s in the fridge!

We normally then pad out the above with a little sweet treat like a biscuit, muffin or bliss ball, some fruit or vege sticks and maybe some extra protein if we think they might need it that day such as nuts, yoghurt or cold meats.

We’re big fans of bento style lunchboxes for use at school or pre-school – my children use the either Goodbyn or Planetbox lunchboxes and I normally find if that even if the cupboards are starting to look a bit bare we can normally pull together enough to fill these – definitely variety is the key and the bento style lunchboxes are perfect for accommodating enough different foods to entice your children!



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