Nut-Free School Lunch Box Ideas

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I did a previous post for preschoolers, which you can find here, so this is ultimately just an expansion on that list. 

As our child's school (and many schools these days) is nut-free due to kids with allergies, we save the nuts and peanut butter for at-home snacks and meals.

Lunch Box Guidelines

There really is only one set of rules I follow when it comes to making my daughter's lunch for school. It must include at least one of each of the following food groups:

  • Vegetable
  • Grain
  • Meat
  • Fruit

I don't make dairy a requirement in my child's lunch box as I worry about the dairy lasting well, and they dislike cheese. My child drinks milk and has yogurt at home. As long as your child is getting dairy at home, I don't feel it is necessary to include it in their lunch box (though it is a required component of hot lunch). 

I also don't pack sweets. They aren't the healthiest and we already give her sweet treats at home with snacks and dinner, so it's not necessary for school. 

Packing The Lunch Box

I use plastic containers and then use reusable silicone cupcake liners as a way to section the different foods so they aren't touching, but there are now divided lunch boxes available as well. I personally find using cupcake liners as cups to be easier to clean and they cost a lot less, making it easier to prep lunches for a full week versus having one Bentgo container that needs to be washed and cleaned daily.

For dips, I found these little dip cups on Amazon and they work really well, no leaks! Perfect for packing ketchup or ranch dressing in your kid's lunch. 

As most kids find sandwiches boring or don't like the crust, I found some food cutters to cut her sandwiches into little bites. This also makes it easier for my child to dip them in ketchup or ranch if they choose to. These can also work for cutting carrots and cucumbers, which are, unfortunately, vegetables my child does not like. 

For utensils, I usually pack food picks unless it's noodles, then I will pack a fork. 

I pack a food item from each of the following categories:




  • Salami
  • Pepperoni
  • Egg (Egg Salad Sandwich)
  • Sandwich Meat (Turkey, Ham, etc)


Some Example Lunch Boxes