presents Annette Sym's Back to School eating guide

pikeletsThe holidays are over and school has begun again. Normal routines have finally returned, we are now faced with the hard task of what to pack in their lunchboxes.  It can be difficult trying to think of healthy, convenient and delicious food for their lunches each day, plus what do you give them when they come home starving from school.

Unfortunately, there are too many little packets to put into the lunch boxes that are filled with sugar, salt and fat. Most parents don't have the time to home bake but if you can allocate a bake day say once a month and make muffins, pikelets, cakes and even low fat corn chips your children will reap the healthy rewards and so will your budget. You can freeze all these items except the corn chips, which will keep fresh for weeks in a well-sealed container. 
Some other ideal snacks are rice crackers, yoghurt, fruit, dried fruit and, for the older kids, nuts. Try to choose the lower salt and sugar varieties.

Dips with celery and carrot sticks are a great snack for kids at school or pack a salad but keep it cool in a special cooler bag. Try to avoid giving your children too many sugary drinks.

When your hungry horde arrives home in the afternoon why not make a fruit smoothie for them or a bowl of high fibre cereal will fill their bellies. Making fresh fruit salad is so nice and more appealing, and if their piece of fruit is coming home in the lunch box then dicing the fruit may help tempt the little ones.

Annette's cookbooks SYMPLY TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE 1-5 are sold in all good newsagencies.

Click here for a low fat Pikelet recipe.

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the essential family lifestyle and entertainment guide