Friday, September 10, 2010

preschool bento lunch: deconstructed pasta salad ... sorta

This was lunch for my 3-year-old daughter today. I wanted to avoid a sandwich since my hubby and I have the rare luxury of free childcare this evening (dinner alone! woohoo!) and I'll be packing her a sandwich to take with her tonight. So lunch this afternoon is a kinda-sorta deconstructed pasta salad.
Sassy pasta salad

- mini-sized wagon wheel pasta mixed with a small amount of Italian dressing
- bird-shaped cheddar cheese (Paige called them "bathtub ducks") ;-)
- leftover sausage of some kind leftover from grilling the other night
- organic strawberries(daughter likes to eat them whole sometimes)
- cucumber slices cut into flower shapes with small cutter

This preschool bento is packed in a Sassy box, using only one of the smaller inner dishes for the sausage. The sausage was cut into chunks and threaded on little picks.

As I've said before, I prefer to make pasta ahead of time and keep in the fridge for quick meals. This pasta salad is just as quick to toss together as making a sandwich would be, just add some dressing and it's ready. Wagon-wheel pasta is what I use most often since it is easier for Paige to get on her fork and easier for Tyler (my 15 month old "baby") to chew. :)

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Becky said... [Reply to comment]

I love your blog!! I have been doing bento lunches for the past 2 weeks and wonder what you do with your scraps. Do you have a bento scrap day on saturday? I have been giving my 4 yr old the scraps of cheese from my 8yr old's lunch but I am curious as to what YOU do with yours!!

Melissa said... [Reply to comment]

Becky, I get asked this question so often! I am actually writing up a post about it right now! :)

s. said... [Reply to comment]

I made your pasta salad, with the pinwheel pasta, peas and creamy italian! All the kids and hubby LOVED it!! I had to make more the next night, and added ham, which they loved even more!

Nina Crittenden said... [Reply to comment]

Ok, Melissa... this is just the cutest blog ever! You are the sweetest Mom to make these glorious meals for your kiddies! Thanks for sharing your great ideas with us! Have a groovy weekend!

Kiersten said... [Reply to comment]

I just found your blog this week (from a friend's recommendation) and love it. My kids are 2 & 3 and we're just setting out on the lunch box path. But I fully want to embrace this concept in an effort to keep my (not so picky) kids eating right.

My biggest question comes in about quantity. My son (3, almost 4) is a constant eater. He is also in constant motion, so the constant fueling makes sense. However, I'm not sure any of these boxes will hold enough food for him.

Do kids progressively eat less as they get older or will this not work for him because I would have to pack 3 bento boxes each day?

Subway Mom said... [Reply to comment]

Fabulous idea! I'm using Disney character pasta for my daughter.

But I have a question, what's the secret to using cookie cutters? Should I make sure that whatever I'm cutting is 'cold' (bread/sandwiches and so on)???

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