Toddler Lunch Ideas

We all get in a rut as to what to feed our toddlers!  Now that I have 4 toddlers to feed multiple times every day, writing down our routine in one place is helpful for me too.  Often times I feed them dinner leftovers or make something real time, but what about preschool or daycare?  This post will focus on how I pack healthy and quick lunches to-go for my bigs at preschool.  These toddler lunch ideas do not need to be reheated and are peanut butter free (our school does not allow peanuts). 

Bento Boxes

I use two different style bento boxes (simply because these are the two I like best and fit in their lunchboxes).  The first is from YumBoxYumBox comes in different colors and has clear dividers on the inside.  It is portion controlled for toddlers and has illustrative suggestions for each of the compartments.  The second I have Bentgo Kids Brights Tray.  

I honestly do not have a preference for one over the other – I also do not add anything soupy or dipping sauces to minimize messes.  Both styles are dishwasher friendly which is a total must for me.  Why do I have 2 different styles??  I have 3 bento boxes for each of my bigs.  One of my biggest tips is to pack multiple meals at the same time.  My girls go to school 3 days a week, so I pack all the lunches at once and store in the fridge for school days!  This makes the evening prep during the weeknights much smoother.


  • Prep the night before and include your child in the fun
  • Pack foods that you know your child will eat or has eaten in the past
  • Chop for bite size eating (I know there are teachers in the room, but I try and chop items smaller so it is easier for my kids to manage)
  • Aim for a variety of items from the categories of protein, meat, vegetables, and grains


Rotisserie Chicken – easy to pick up from your local grocery store and cube up

Deli Meat – think outside of ham & turkey… we love salami and pepperoni too

Cheese – chop cheese sticks, add shredded cheese, or small cheese wheels

Almond Butter – spread on crackers or use as a dipping sauce

Boiled Eggs – chopped into bite size pieces

Quesadilla – cheese, chicken, beef, pork, or black bean

Oatmeal Balls – here are my favorite recipes and I always use almond butter

Chick Peas – straight from the can


Really any and all fruits are fair game just chopped into bite size pieces – these are our go-to’s




Mandarin Oranges

Dried Figs





Shredded Carrots – easier for small mouths to munch

Dried Peas – these are our favorites

Broccoli – steamed or try this recipe here for patties (they taste like hasbrowns!!)

Sweet Potato – steamed and cubed

Corn – roasted or canned

Sweet Peas – fresh or canned

Cucumber – sliced and diced

Bell Peppers – chopped into bit size pieces


Quinoa – either plain or through this family fave recipe (we bake in a pan and call it Quinoa Cake!)

Pretzels – typically sticks

Crackers – typically whole grain

Pita – cut into smaller triangles

Pasta – use ditalini pasta for this veggie packed recipe here (we add shredded zucchini and onion)

Cheddar Bunnies – any type of snack-y cracker

Rice – brown, wild, etc

Cereal – Cheerios, etc

I created this free printable to post in a handy location to assist with toddler lunch ideas – feel free to use it as well!  Remember to keep it simple and provide foods you know your child will eat while away!

This content uses Amazon Associate referral links.  At no additional cost to you, if you click and make a purchase, I will earn a small commission.  The content of this post is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate programs.

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email