Meal Planning FAQ: What do you eat for breakfast & lunch?

I received two emails this last month, asking specifically what we eat (besides dinners that I discuss weekly through my Meal Planning posts) on $150 per week.

I'll start by saying as far as breakfasts and lunches are concerned, my family members are creatures of habit.

We eat high fiber, whole grain cereal (that I stock up on when on sale and/or when I have a coupon) with fat-free milk for breakfast every day. Occassionally, over the weekend, breakfast is waffles, pancakes, or muffins that I make from scratch as I always have flour, sugar, baking powder/soda, spices, eggs, vegetable oil, and fruit on hand and tend to stock up when these items are on sale and/or when I have a coupon.

My daughter, 5 1/2 year old Kindergartner, and my husband are picky and have a very short list of what gets packed in their lunch every day. To be completely honest, about the only thing that changes in their lunch from day to day is the fruit (whatever is in season and on sale is what I buy each week) and the snack (could be nuts, dried fruit, granola, dry cereal, jerky, crackers) and I love leftovers (hate sandwiches!) so, I tend to make a salad out of whatever we have or eat whatever is leftover from the previous 2 dinners.

And afternoon snacks are always comprised of fresh fruit, popcorn or other whole grain low-fat cracker, and a dairy product like a glass of fat-free milk, yogurt, or some cheese.

We allow Emily to have a sugar-free Jell-O or pudding cup (which I purchase when on sale and/or when I have a coupon) for dessert after dinner on occasion and once a month or less I make a dessert over the weekend, like Lemon bars or brownies (again from scratch as I almost always have the ingredients on hand), but we rarely have dessert after meals. I keep Oreo and Fig Newton cookies (purchased when on sale only!) in our snack drawer in case someone wants a little something and we don't drink sodas, coffee, or juice (other than OJ). We mainly stick to fruit and some times ice cream that I buy only when on sale, usually on a whim.

Nolan is on pureed baby food that I mostly make myself from whatever fruits & vegetables are in season and I freeze it so I can pull out just a few ounces of what I need for the day. He adds very little cost to our weekly budget at this point.

Just for an example, here's what we all ate today so far:

Emily - Mini wheats cereal (dry, no milk), yogurt, half a banana and some OJ
David - Bowl of Oatmeal squares cereal with other half of banana, glass of milk
Amanda - Bowl of Mini wheats cereal, OJ

Packed in Emily's lunch - Cheez-Its and a Go-Gourt for morning snack; Ham & cheese spirals and sliced strawberries and raspberry Fig Newtons for lunch.

I **LOVE** Glad reusable containers for lunch as they seal well and are easy for little hands and I won't use anything but the Camelbak canteens for lunchboxes as they do not leak and are very simple to take apart and wash in the dishwasher.

Packed in David's lunch - Almonds for morning snack; 4oz smoked/grilled chicken breast (that we grilled over the weekend), string cheese, carrots,  strawberries & blueberries for lunch; Fiber1 bar and yogurt for afternoon snack

Amanda's lunch - I ate a banana & glass of milk for my morning snack; 4oz smoked/grilled chicken breast, cherry tomatoes, blueberries, carrots, boiled egg white, sliced almonds over romaine lettuce (a salad) for lunch.

Afternoon snack: (at home after school)

Emily - Wheat thins, cheddar cheese cubed up, sliced strawberries
Amanda - Glass of milk and almonds

I think that covers it.

What do you pack in your daily lunches? 

Are you struggling with your weekly grocery budget and if so, leave me a comment or shoot me an email and I'll see if I have any tricks up my sleeve to share with you!


  1. This is great. We're pretty habitual when it comes to breakfast and lunch and you know what, it works for us.

    Love these great ideas!


Post a Comment

Popular Posts