Back to School and Beyond: A "No Sandwich" Lunch Option!

 Trifecta of Fullness Pasta Salad

Trifecta of Fullness Pasta Salad

It's back to school time (well, it is here in Arizona anyway!) and for the next few weeks, I'm going to feature some back to school lunch tips that will help you give your kids a great start to the new year.

And if you don't have kiddos heading back to class, don't worry- you'll still be glad you tuned in!

Some kids get bored of sandwiches pretty quickly. This can be pretty challenging since sandwiches are kind of the perfect lunch food. You can incorporate just about all of the major food groups between two slices of bread, it's easily transported, doesn't require utensils, and can be eaten cold

My favorite solution to the sandwich strike is this easy pasta salad. You can chop up the mix-ins ahead of time or just go with what you have on hand. Make a little extra pasta the night before at dinnertime and you've got a great go to the next morning.

You might choose to pack some for your own lunch :)

When it comes to keeping kids full and focused, you've got to have a balance of fiber, protein, and fat at snacks and mealtimes. I call this the "Trifecta of Fullness." This pasta salad contains all three elements of the Trifecta of Fullness- and is just pretty tasty too!

Trifecta of Fullness Pasta Salad

Serves 4

  • Two cups cooked whole wheat pasta, cooled (use gluten-free pasta if desired)
  • 1- 15oz. can garbanzo beans, drained
  • One package cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 cucumbers, chopped (cooked broccoli can also be subbed)
  • 1 small can of sliced black olives, drained
  • 1 cup fat-free Italian Dressing
  • 1/2 cup red onion, chopped (optional)

Combine all ingredients in a medium sized mixing bowl and serve. For best results, refrigerate overnight.