Moms tell me one of their least favorite things about September is the thought of 10 long months of figuring out what to pack for lunch every day. My first piece of advice: Enlist assistants to help you—experts agree that getting the kids involved significantly ups the odds that they'll eat what you send. Brainstorm some options together before school starts, then use our primer to put it all together.
Tip: School cafeteria offerings are getting better and healthier all the time. (In other words, maybe you can give up packing for good!) Check back here in October for advice on how to work with your school to improve its lunches.
Sandwiches are a given. Choose a whole-grain bread, which will be digested more slowly than the processed white variety, helping blood sugar stay stable over the course of the afternoon. Try whole-wheat wraps, bagels or sandwich rounds to mix things up. Multigrain or whole-corn tortillas are also fun options (we like La Tortilla Factory).