School Lunch Packing Chart (for your kids!)

I’m so excited about this new School Lunch Packing Chart because it has honestly both streamlined and revolutionized the first step in our lunch packing process! And I don’t think I’m overselling it. I got the idea from the comments on my Back to School Lunch Routine post and have been testing it out with my own kids … thank you to commenter Michelle for this awesome tip!

School Lunch Chart for Your Kids

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Why I Created the School Lunch Packing Chart

As I said in my post about our routine, each week I add a few items to the grocery list specifically for school lunches. That was just me on my own thinking, “Okay, we’ll get some grapes, apples and maybe a pack of string cheese.”

But, even if you are an avid cook, you still sometimes “forget” about certain options. So I sat down and created this chart with every single (good-for-you, of course) school lunch food I could think of and put it all down on this document.

How It Works

The idea is you print (and even laminate) the chart as an easy way to ask your kids what items they’d like in their lunches the upcoming week. I originally thought I would still mostly be making my kids lunches for them and using this as a guideline for what to buy and pack.

But, during our first week using the chart, things got even better than that…on Sunday I just got out all the stuff they had requested and said, “Here’s what you picked for your lunches this week … start packing!” Adding the chart to our routine removed the decision of “what to pack” (the hard part, in my opinion) so, without hesitation, they got right to work on packing lunches for the next day.

What I personally like the least about packing school lunches is figuring out what to pack each day (using your brain can be hard at the end of a long day, haha). If all the decisions are already made for me and I have the ingredients on hand, I don’t dread the process nearly as much! So, you can see why I am so excited about this new chart. :)

You don’t have to laminate this document, but I do recommend it for easy use over and over again (I just walked into Staples and got mine done without having to wait too long). I even like having my kids use different colored dry erase markers so I know who asked for what when I go to add things to my grocery list (although knowing my kids so well I can usually guess who picked what without the color coding, LOL).

So anyway, I hope you enjoy this chart as much as we do and that I am not building it up too much here. Obviously, this first installment does not cater to any special dietary needs, but if it looks like something that will work for you please try it out and let me know how it goes! For more ideas, check out our Easy Lunch Ideas.

How to Get Your Free Copy

Visit the Free Real Food Resources section of our shop and click “Get Access” to get a free printable PDF copy of the school lunch packing chart (and much more). You will also be subscribed to our weekly newsletter to be notified of new blog posts and recipes.

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56 thoughts on “School Lunch Packing Chart (for your kids!)”

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  1. Hi! I would love to download this school lunch packing chart, but I can’t seem to find it on the free membership area. Is there another way I could get it? Thanks so much!

    1. Hi, when you’re in the free membership area, it’s under SCHOOL LUNCHES section and then the second link is the school lunch packing chart. If you’re still having issues finding it, please reach out to – Nicole

  2. Hi! I am trying to get the pdf of the school lunches chart for my kids to help plan their lunches. I’ve tried submitting my email to join but can’t seem to get it to work so that I can log in. Can you send me the school lunch chart? Thank you!

    1. Same here! Would love to be added to the newsletter list, but would really like to have this chart! Our little one starts his “school” on Monday and I’m at a loss for lunches!

      1. Hi Brittany, we’ll email that PDF to you. You can also find it in our members’ portal at learn.100daysofrealfood. And even better, Lisa’s new Meal Planner comes with a laminated one to stick on your fridge. You can grab that here:


    I want to purchase the 4 part BUNDLE OF SCHOOL LUNCHES ,but can’t get my credit card accepted.

    I tried 2 different credit cards.

    Please help me.

    Thanks,Margaret A. Berry


    Hi! Tried to download the chart but couldn’t find the link. Could you help?
    Thanks! This is going to be a life saver!

  5. I realize I’m really behind here, but is this still available? If not, I’m going to have to type up my own bc this is brilliant.

    1. 100 Days Admin

      Hi Sandee, you should be able to just enter your email address towards the bottom in order to obtain the chart. If you need help, please let me know. – Nicole

  6. Hi I am trying to get the link to download the meal chart again but can’t find it. Can you please help me

    1. 100 Days Admin

      Hi Reena, I just emailed you about the chart. Please let me know if you have any questions. – Nicole

    1. Hi Kelly, click on the image at the bottom of the post and fill out your name and email address and press download now. Please let me know if you have any other questions. – Nicole

  7. Hello Lisa,
    Thank you for the chart. My picky eater is way past the school lunches stage but I have downloaded it any way. It will be useful for all of us at any age.

  8. Hi lisa,

    I am obsessed with your newsletter and blog and I already follow you. I would like the lunch packing chart. Do I sign up for the newsletter again even though I’m already signed up?

  9. I have something similar going in the app Paprika. I set a category called school lunches and I use the meal plan part to pull those items in to certain days. I’m definitely going to use this list to expand my selections. You are right too. If you have what you need and you know the options, it makes packing lunches way easier.

  10. I am super excited to try this for meals in general for my problem (not picky!) eater. When there are so few things she likes, (and often she’s “off” even the things she does like for one reason or another) it is way too easy to slip into a rut of just feeding her the same 4 or 5 dependable choices. This looks like it could even serve to stimulate her appetite for foods she might have forgotten she liked once upon a time. One can always hope!

      1. Kathy, I can’t download it either. I don’t even have an option to download. When I click on the email option, it’s just a link that opens to where I can email this page to someone.

      2. Hi Kristi, you should be able to insert your email address and then the chart will download. – Nicole

  11. I made something like this but put it in Google Sheets at the beginning of this year. Each tab has the list of each category and in the main tab, the kids can either click and randomly generate a lunch or pick themselves.

    I am (was) a programmer for many years before fully planting myself firmly into motherhood, so I meant to go a little farther with it to automate it and make it a little more interactive, but alas… who has the time.

    I’d be happy to share it if anyone is interested.

  12. I actually have ours in Google Sheets. Each tab has the list of each category and they can either click and randomly generate a lunch or pick themselves. I’d be happy to share it with you if you were interested in seeing it.