I thought we were over this, but as showed up in my Facebook feed the other day, it seems we’re not.
You know, lunchbox art?
Which isn’t actually the painting of, or drawing on lunchboxes, but rather the art of creating things out of food so they look like mermaids and Pokemons (or is
it Pokemonses?) and not at all like Vegemite sandwiches and an apple.
Possibly because both those items are, apparently, taboo and to be excluded from all lunchboxes lest you Be Judged! By Other Mothers.
So, anyhoo, a couple of “lunchbox ideas” popped up in my feed, featuring things like snails, but not the delicious garlic buttered escargot kind, but rather snails made from apple and celery and two raisins and pretzel sticks or something. I don’t actually know, so please, please do not follow this set of instructions I just gave, then complain at me about how it didn’t work.
As tends to happen around this time of year, I get a bunch of emails, media releases mostly, about all sorts of back to school stuff. The theme this year has been skewed very much towards the lunchbox/lunches/what the kids can eat at school sort of thing.
Before I carefully read them and worked out whether any would fit into my editorial schedule (I lie, I don’t have an editorial schedule) I did a bit of “Bloody jeebus bumface, school is back soon!” and wrote copious lists so I felt as though I had some level of planning and control of the impending doom.
Not quite, I might add, as Impending Doom if school doesn’t bloody go back soon! Just saying.
Anyhoo, after freaking and panicing a little, I sat down and read a handful of these emails.
One caught my eye; pronouncing something something about Gluten Free Lunchboxes.
Given I am Gluten Free Intolerant, generally this sort of thing is dismissed fairly soon into the reading of the email. Unless it can give me something interesting, different, and not just appear to be mindless bandwagon jumping on, I’m not interested.
(I am, however, interested in things that are less fad, and more of actual benefit to those who genuinely need it.)
Gluten. Free. Lunchboxes, huh?
It did capture my attention. So I thought I’d share with you my Top 3, my absolutely favourite three gluten free lunchboxes.
For a very long time, over ten years in fact, my loyal gluten free lunchbox has been the Tupperware Sandwich Keeper Plus.
It’s one item, so less likely to be left behind or lost, unlike when you have to send the kids to school with separate containers for lunch and snacks. It’s big enough to hold enough items to satisfy most children during the school day, and keeps the food not touching, even though it’s all in the one container.
Although gluten free, this season’s catalogue appears to have overlooked the whole Gender Neutrality thing going on at the moment. I went looking for a bike last Christmas and it was impossible to purchase a reasonably priced blue bike (or pink, although I wasn’t really looking for pink, I just noticed because of the obvious absence of blue bikes) because Gender Neutrality in toys had recently become a thing and blue and pink toys were viewed as traumatising. Or something.
Anyhoo, the Sandwich Keeper Pluses come in pink and blue, but I do know they change colours from time to time, so maybe they’ll be less gender related one day. Although no one is forcing the parents of boys to force the blue one onto their sons, and ditto re the parents of girls with the pink. I’m fairly sure you can just buy whatever colour you want and give it to whatever child you want. Maybe ask them what colour they like?
I dunno, crazy thought.
Recently, my children were introduced to the Nude Food Rubbish Free Lunch Box. Like the above, it is one container that is able to hold a sandwich and up to four snacks. It also houses roundish fruits really well. Like, really well.
(When I first saw these, I thought the rounded end was designed specifically for apples and oranges. Didn’t I feel like a bit of a dick when I explained this to someone who knew what they were talking about and they explained the boxes came with snack tubs that fit into this space. In fact, it is what it was designed for?!)
Unlike the Sandwich Keeper Plus, the Rubbish Free Lunch Box has a lid for each of the different compartments. The former has only one lid, so when it’s open, the whole box is open.
So this is our new one we like, although it hasn’t had as much opportunity for use as the Tupperware one has. Yet.
Also unlike the Tuppeware, it has taken the whole Gender Neutrality thing to the other extreme, and it comes in a sort of translucent white. So that’s nice. If you’re into that sort of thing. I don’t care, really, but I know others do.
And my third?
Well, really, I tend to find something I like and then just keep replacing it with the same one as much as I possibly can, for as long as I possibly can. Which is why I am a bit of a Tupperware freak.
Basically, anything like the above two, which is a single item with compartments is good.
I do have an awesome set that is a few separate pieces, but they all fit nicely into a cooler bag; sadly that is no longer available so had to cross that one off my Top 3 List.
I’m sure you’ll find something if you don’t like my top two suggestions. Coles, Target, Kmart, Big W, Aldi, Woolworths, all those sorts of places have something.
Not only are they all gluten free (I’m pretty sure), they are also low in fat, low in sugar, mostly dishwasher proof, or at least easy to wipe 5 week old sandwich mould from their interior with some warm soapy water. Not much other gluten free stuff can do that!
I hope that has relieved some of your back to school stress. These types of lunchboxes have served me well for over a decade. I swear by them.
That they are gluten free is just a bonus!