Fall begins this week and so does week 5 of my healthy lunchbox meal plan. Unbelievable! I’m still in denial that summer is over!

The girls have done a good job of sampling/eating some of the more unfamiliar foods I’m offering each week so this week I have a few more additions to try. Those include cottage cheese (Frances eats it all the time for breakfast but Ellie is a bit more leery), grape tomatoes (I never have much luck but I played up the Elmo on the packaging so maybe that will help), and Homemade Hot Pockets (the recipe will post on Thursday). It is always interesting to me to see what they will eat at certain meals but not at others. I’m thankful that our preschool and mother’s-day-out give the girls plenty of time to eat. After following my colleague and school lunch pioneer, Dayle Hayes, I’m a firm believer in the idea of recess before lunch and longer lunch time so children are hungry and have time to eat.

Let @holleygrainger plan your child's #healthylunchbox this week-#menuplan week 5.Click To Tweet

I would love to hear how your lunchbox packing has been going so far this year. I’m always interested to see what comes home and what the girls eat. Do you ever feel like such a champion mom (or dad) when they come back empty? While I’m not a fan of the clean plate club, there is something secretly satisfying about an empty lunchbox.


  • Main dish: Pancakes
  • Dairy: Cottage cheese with cinnamon
  • Fruit: “Apple Spaghetti”
  • Vegetable: Canned carrot coins (rinsed and drained)
  • Dip: Maple syrup
Breakfast for lunch is always a delicious #lunchbox option for kids via @HolleyGrainger.Click To Tweet


  • Main dish: Nonna’s spaghetti and meat sauce
  • Vegetable: No-salt-added canned green beans
  • Dairy: Mini Baby Bel cheese
  • Dairy: Chobani Greek yogurt tube (sample)
  • Happy: Fish card


  • Main dish: Pulled chicken breast
  • Vegetable: Cucumber and grape tomato skewers
  • Dip: Sabra Hummus
  • Cereal: Multigrain Cheerios
  • Fruit: Stemilt Barlett Pears (sample)
  • Happy: Fish card


  • Main dish: Homemade Hot Pockets (recipe coming soon)
  • Vegetable: Cucumber
  • Fruit: Pineapple
  • Dip: Ranch
  • Happy: Stickers


  • Main dish: Cheese quesadilla
  • Vegetable/Legume: Black beans
  • Fruit: Apple Slices
  • Vegetable: Carrot sticks
  • Happy: Chocolate coins


Thanks for following along each week. If there is a lunch you particularly love or if you have suggestions or ideas that have worked well for your little ones, please let me know in the comments below! Also, don’t forget to sign up for my NEW newsletter debuting LATER THIS MONTH!! (If you clicked out of the popup, just scroll down to the very bottom of the page and there is a place in the bottom right corner to enroll.)

And if you’re looking for more inspiration, check out and pin these lunchbox posts:

4 More Weeks of Healthy Lunchbox Meal Plans

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4