cute (and safe) school lunches

Ditch that passe brown bag! Lunchboxes can be adorable, too!

I’m a huge fan of SkipHop for the kids. They have SkipHop lunchboxes almost every year! My favorite this Owl Lunchbox.

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But Colin prefers the Penguin!

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For older kids (or grown ups) this polka dot lunchbox is adorable!

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I got this one for Colin for next year – how fun is this pirate lunchbox!
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But its not just about having a cute lunch box! Keeping your kids’ lunches safe is important.

Tip #1: If the lunch you’re packing contains perishable food items like cold cut meats, eggs and yogurt, make sure to pack it with freezer packs or keep it otherwise chilled.  Harmful bacteria multiply rapidly in the “Danger Zone” — the temperatures between 40 and 140 °F (4.4 °C and 60 °C). So, perishable food transported without an ice source won’t stay safe long.
Tip #2: Frozen juice boxes can also be used as freezer packs. Freeze juice boxes overnight and use as freezer packs. By lunchtime, the juice should be thawed and ready to drink!
Tip #3: Pack lunches in an insulated, soft-sided lunch bag. Lunches with perishable food items can be unsafe to eat by lunchtime if packed in an old-fashioned brown paper bag.
Tip #4: If there is a refrigerator at school, tell your child to keep their lunch inside. But leave the lid of the lunchbox or bag open so that cold air can better circulate and keep the food cold.
Tip #5:  After lunch, discard all leftover food, used food packaging, and paper bags. Do not reuse packaging because it could contaminate other food and cause foodborne illness.

Visit FoodSafety.gov to learn more tips for best food safety practices.

About Melissa

Melissa is founder of Girlymama and co-founder of the mom fashion blog, All Things Chic. You can also find her designing blogs at Eliza Grace Design and on Twitter as Melissa Angert.