5 healthy lunchbox ideas that will make life easier

Make it extra special and it'll come home empty.
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Looking for a fresh start to packed lunches? Read on for our fabulous healthy lunchbox ideas to avoid boring boxes, soggy sandwiches and expensive salads from the local café. 

Rekindle your love of lunchtime at school and work and enlist the help of the whole family using quick and easy ideas, healthy options and yummy leftovers.

1. Plan ahead

Save time in the mornings by preparing all the elements of your lunch ahead of time. Easy, healthy lunchbox ideas start with input from the whole family, so why not have a big cook-up on the weekend? Other cheap, healthy lunch box ideas to prepare ahead include a killer salad dressing to use all week and extra servings of evening meals for smaller portions to grab from the fridge and go. 

Top tips: Healthy lunchbox ideas for adults

  • Add extra flavour to your salads with roasted vegetables, healthy nut toppings and thoughtful dressings
  • A soft-boiled egg or leftover BBQ chicken packs in the protein
  • A portion of brown rice or quinoa can be metred out to last all week
  • Pack salad dressing in a sealed container
5 lunchbox ideas that make your lunch feel more grown up
Protein plus. Tap to get our recipe for this quinoa warm brunch salad. (Photographer: Cath Muscat)

2. Prepare at home and assemble at work

When prepared in the morning, some lunches get soggy by the time lunch comes around and it’s less than lovely when you open the lid. Try keeping ‘wet’ and ‘dry’ ingredients separate – put snacks, fruit and sandwiches into their own containers for both kids and adults. If you’re lucky enough to have a kitchen or fridge in your workplace, you can prepare a healthy packed lunch and assemble it at the office, saving the environment from takeaway packaging.

  • Cut fruit to snackable sizes for quick bites
  • Mix and match leftovers with fresh foods
  • Tuck in a treat – try dried fruit or homemade protein balls for an energy boost
  • Make it fun – kids eat with their eyes too!
  • Copycat: ask, “what did other kids have today that you’d like in your lunchbox?”
Top tips: Healthy lunchbox ideas for kids

2. Serve it in a fabulous container

We’ve all adopted the ‘keep cup’ idea, so why not go the extra mile with your food presentation to give your lunchbox a boost? Even your leftover homemade noodle salad will look better in a pretty bowl and healthy lunchbox ideas start with a fun and fabulous lunchbox. Why not invest in a new setup for both the kids and yourself?

5 lunchbox ideas that make your lunch feel more grown up
Roasted vegetables make a scrumptious addition to a lunch salad. (Credit: Getty images)

3. Upgrade your cool bag

If your insulated lunch bag is looking a little worse for wear, give it a good soak with Napisan or similar to freshen it up and remove stains. If it’s beyond help, opt for an upgrade – there are loads of cute and clever models on the market.

5. Pack a picnic

Why not grab a few buddies and throw a blanket down in the park nearby work for a lunchtime picnic? Encourage the kids to do the same. Find a spot in the shade, soak up the sun, commune with nature or simply watch the world go by.

5 lunchbox ideas that make your lunch feel more grown up
(Credit: Getty images)

Best lunchboxes and lunch bags for a healthy lunch


Green gingham lunch satchel, The Somewhere Co


Is it a lunch bag or a shoulder bag? The Somewhere Co’s Green Gingham lunch satchel is so stylish with it’s on-trend print and vegan leather strap that your friends will all be asking exactly where your stylish new handbag is from. 


Bentgo MicroSteel lunch box in gold, Bentgo


Giving plastic the flick this year? Good on you! Bentgo’s stainless steel lunchbox is microwaveable, lightweight and comes with a silicon divider so you can keep your snack and your main separate. Available in five colours.


3-tier insulated bento box in cloud, Frank Green


Like to enjoy your lunch piping hot? This innovative stackable, insulated bento box by Frank Green is perfect for those who work on the road or without access to a microwave for reheating leftovers. It keeps hot food hot and cold food cold – for hours. Fill it with steaming hot soup, leftover pasta or even fresh berries swirled through Greek yogurt for a gourmet lunch on the go.


B.Box lunchbox in emerald forest, Biome


Okay so B.Box lunchboxes are designed for kids, but they’re so well thought out that nobody will blame you if you buy one for yourself! The spacious compartments can fit an uncut sandwich, a whole fruit (no more brown apples) and two leak-proof compartments are perfect for things like yogurt, dips or saucy leftovers. B.Box is also in a league of its own when it comes to accessorising and customising – check out the official B.Box website for additional silicon compartments and spare parts.


PackIt freezable lunch bag in black, Myer


Worried about food spoiling before lunchtime? A freezable insulated lunch bag is a gamechanger! This lunch bag by PackIt has gel lined walls that can chill a meal and drink for hours. It folds flat (so it doesn’t take up too much space in the freezer) and has a top handle, buckle clips and a zip closure to lock in cold air. You’ll never use a regular lunchbag again.

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