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10 Easy Lunches for Kids Using Mason Jars

Easy Kid Made Lunches

The holiday break is over. The new year is here.

That means it’s time to get back on track with healthy eating! One very important part of that is teaching your children what real, nourishing food is and why it is important.

In my experience the best way to teach your kids about good food is by letting them help prepare it!

Start teaching them at a young age and by the time they are in school they can practically pack their own lunches. What parent doesn’t want a little help with lunches?!

Ready to start delegating that task? Here are ten lunch components kids can make by themselves. As an added bonus you won’t hear any complaining about boring or gross lunches. Kids can’t complain if they choose and pack their own lunch!

Take one more item off your to-do list with these fun, healthy, and simple mason jar lunches that kids can make.

RELATED: How to Get Kids to Eat the Rainbow

Mason Jar Lunches Your Kids Can Make Themselves

10 Easy Ideas

Veggies with dip

Add sour cream and your choice of seasoning to a jar (we like sea salt, garlic powder and dill weed). Put the chopped vegetables on top. No need for separate containers. The veggies are already in the dip and ready to go. Try making your own ranch, too.

Fruit on the bottom yogurt

Use fresh or frozen fruit and a touch of sweetener for the fruity part of the yogurt. Top it with plain, whole milk yogurt or coconut yogurt. When it’s time for lunch simply mix and enjoy.

Trail mix

Trail mix is great for fostering creativity in the kitchen. Let your child pick what they want to add to the mix. Then pop the lid on and shake! Some of our favorite additions are homemade kettle corn granola, dried fruit, crispy nuts and coconut.

Mason Jar Lunches Your Kids Can Make Themselves

Apples with dip

Another lunch component that allows for creativity is fruit dip. You can go with something simple like natural peanut butter, almond butter or sunbutter. Or you can make a dip using yogurt or sour cream and your favorite sweetener. Better yet, add some vegetables to your dip using any version of this easy pumpkin butter. If you don’t like or don’t have apples on hand grapes, pears, pineapple and strawberries are great for dipping too.

Tuna, salmon or chicken salad

One of my daughter’s favorite lunches by far is chicken or salmon salad. We use homemade Miracle Whip® or Katie’s homemade mayo and a little seasoning mixed with the meat. You can follow a simple recipe like this salmon salad or create your own version using crispy nuts, dried fruit, celery or avocado. Serve it with chips, crackers or veggies for dipping or simply eat it with a spoon.

Fruit salad

I like to think of fruit salad as “let’s see what we can use up from the refrigerator” salad. Any fruit will work. Serve it plain or drizzle honey on top. Or you can really spruce it up with some plain yogurt along with the honey.

Mason Jar Lunches Your Kids Can Make Themselves


A smoothie may not seem like something a kid can make. But in reality it is the perfect item for kids to prepare. You just dump whatever you like in the blender and turn it on. There isn’t even any measuring required.

My daughter checked out a kids cookbook from the library and enjoyed using a smoothie recipe from it to guide her in creating her own smoothie. She was so proud to make it by herself and to share it with her brother.

As a parent I love how easy it is to add nutrients to smoothies by using things like powdered probiotics, egg yolks, grass-fed collagen and unrefined sea saltLooking for that collagen (use the coupon KS10 for 10% off!) or other supplements? Use coupon code KS10 for 10% off your entire order at Perfect Supplements (use the coupon KS10 for 10% off!)!

Lettuce salad

Not all kids are big fans of lettuce. But if they get to make their own salad and have something to shake up before they eat it they just might have a different opinion. Plus salad does not have to be boring. Add your favorite dressing and toppings like dried fruit, croutons, raw vegetables, crispy nuts and cooked meat.

Put the dressing in the bottom of the jar. Add the lettuce and toppings and put the lid on. At lunch time simply shake and eat.

Chips with guacamole

My kids go crazy over guacamole. Especially when they make it! We go the easy route by mixing mashed avocado and homemade salsa. Use your favorite chips or raw vegetables for dipping.


Store-bought Lunchables® are basically processed food in expensive plastic. But kids love them for the fun factor! No need to go without. Just make your own.

Make a batch of homemade lunch meat. Then let your kids use a knife or a cookie cutter to cut the meat and cheese into fun shapes. Layer them in a jar with your favorite store-bought or homemade crackers and a fun, healthy lunch is ready.

Mason Jar Lunches Your Kids Can Make Themselves

These are just a few of the many ways to make lunch preparation into a fun task for kids. Let them get creative and come up with more mason jar lunches.

You can always warm homemade soup and pour it in a jar before packing it (this will be a task for mom or dad if your child is younger). Any time you can get your kids to consume nourishing broth is a win! Make it fun by pairing it with a homemade muffin or crackers with cheese.

Are you ready for a fresh start when it comes to packing lunches that includes teaching your kids life skills?

This year put a stop to the boring lunch complaints and that one more thing on your to-do list. Get those kids in the kitchen and let them start packing their own mason jar lunches.

All you need are jars, lids, real food and some creativity. It may take a little extra work the first few times you show your kids how to do the prep work. But after that you can let them take over so you can focus on other things. Or just sit there as a proud parent and watch your kids mature right before your eyes.

Maybe they’ll even make lunch for you!

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Mason Jar Lunches Your Kids Can Make Themselves

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Kids watching a cooking lesson at a kitchen island

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Unless otherwise credited, photos are owned by the author or used with a license from Canva or Deposit Photos.

7 thoughts on “10 Easy Lunches for Kids Using Mason Jars”

  1. Armina Rocher

    Guess what, Mary?
    It was amazing, my kids were really enjoy picked & mixed what they want for their lunches over our last weekends. I totally in love with these brilliant ideas and all of your healthy, tasty and easy ingredients for kids’ lunches.
    By the way, we actually couldn’t find any Mason jars in our hometown, so I just re-used spaghetti/jam/ glass jars. Anyway, my little kids still have to keep using their plastic lunch boxes to school to avoid breaking those glass jars during the days…. 🙂
    Thanks so much for your kind sharing!

  2. I have used mason jars for years since I don’t use plastic. The one
    issue is that the lids are really for one time use. It says so at the
    bottom of the back side information. Maybe it has to do with the
    coating on them. I do reuse them, but put a plastic bag or saran
    wrap between it and my food. Any information on this from anyone
    else? I guess I could call the Ball company and ask why.

    1. Barbara, you can buy white plastic lids for mason jars (both regular and wide mouth). I have a whole stash of them so I can reuse mason jars for everything! You can even write on the lids with a Sharpie to keep everything labeled.

    2. I think the one time use warning is intended to mean when you are using them to can food in a water bath. The seal is only good the one time. If you are just using them for storage, I think you should be more than fine re-using them.

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