Quick and easy lunches

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Yes, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are easy. But, what is quicker than throwing a hard boiled egg or homemade beef jerky in your kids lunch? Real food lunches can be just as simple, loved and gobbled up. No, they may not have a shelf life of 12 years, but is that what you really want?

Here are some of our sample lunches for our kids and ourselves:

1)Hard boiled egg with salt and pepper
Colby cheese
Bubbie’s dill pickles (www.bubbies.com)
Baby carrots and grape tomatoes

2) homemade beef jerky (see recipe below)
Monterey Jack cheese
Grapes
Kale chips (www.bradsrawfoods.com)

3) Applegate salami or soppressata (www.applegate.com)
Raw organic almonds, macadamia nuts and unsweetened shredded coconut
Cheese
Homemade applesauce (recipe below)

As you can see, a bunch of pre-packaged foods are not necessary. And in an effort at full disclosure, my son has gone through a patch of not finishing his lunches. After a light bulb conversation with my mom, I realized that if he never eats his carrots and tomatoes, it’s probably because he does not like them. She could not have PAID me to eat celery. shudder. So, we found he is the only one in our family that loves kale chips. So, it’s a vegetable nonetheless.

They did wonder where their sandwiches went, and are confused by the food pyramid discussed at school. We simply explain that Daddy has the newest information available and that the school is teaching what it knows. It works for a 6 year old. Let me know of your creative lunch ideas, we could all use some inspiration!

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Beef Jerky

2 lbs London broil or flank steak cut in 1/8 in strips
1/2 c coconut aminos (I use Coconut Secret brand. Acts as replacement for soy sauce or Worchestire sauce)
1 T liquid smoke
1 tsp of the following spices: chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper
Dash of cayenne pepper

Place all in a large plastic bag, massaging ingredients together.
Marinate for 36 hours or so
Preheat oven to its lowest temp (mine is 170 degrees F)
Line cookie sheets with foil, place wire rack on top
Lay out marinated strips so they don’t touch
Cook for 4 hours and flip strips. Cook another 2 hrs or until looking petrified.
Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Homemade Applesauce

Dice 4-6 Gala apples (or your favorite). I do not bother with peeling, love the skin!
Place in a small crockpot with at least 1 tsp cinnamon. Cook for at least 5 hrs. Mash with a potato masher or a fork. Serve immediately warm or refrigerate and put in lunches! Yum!

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