As parents, we all want to send our kids off to school with a healthy, nutritious lunch that they’ll also love eating.
It can be hard enough to do this at the best of times, but even harder if you’re having to accommodate food intolerances.
Recent findings from the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy suggest that as many as one in 20 Australian children suffer from a food allergy, so if you are trying to navigate this, you’re certainly not on your own.
The supermarket can be a minefield – so many of the foods your kids want to eat are chock full of preservatives, gluten and too much sugar. And they’re not going to be motivated to eat it if it’s dull, boring and tasteless.
Kids with sensitive tummies obviously need extra care. If your little one has gluten intolerance or is sensitive to preservatives, try one of these alternatives to get out of the boring lunchbox rut the kids are sick of.
These ideas are all made with a new range of ham and bacon from D’Orsogna that’s 100% natural, with no artificial ingredients and is free from preservatives, added nitrites, artificial flavouring, artificial colours, and gluten.
1. Ham, cottage cheese and semi-dried tomato roll-ups
Bread doesn’t need to be the centrepiece of your child’s lunch. Try using large slices of D’Orsogna 100% Natural ham, laying it flat like you would a bread-based wrap. Mix together 250 grams of cottage cheese, 2 tbsp of semi-dried tomatoes, 1 tbsp of chopped parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the mixture on to the middle of each slice of ham, and roll them up in a cigar shape.
2. Gluten-free ham, Swiss cheese, and baby spinach sandwich
Make a sandwich using your favourite gluten-free bread and fill it with slices of D’Orsogna 100% Natural ham, Swiss cheese and baby spinach. Add some chutney to finish it off.
3. Ham and cheese mini quiches
These mini quiches are gluten-free and are perfect hot or cold. You’ll need ½ a cup of D’Orsogna 100% Natural ham, chopped. 6 eggs, ¼ cup plain Greek yoghurt, 3 tablespoons of milk, 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper.
Preheat your oven to 180 °C. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, plain Greek yoghurt and milk. Add the ham, cheese, salt and pepper and mix. Distribute your egg mixture evenly into a mini muffin pan and bake for 15-18 minutes. Allow them to cool in the pan and then carefully remove with a small knife or spatula.
4. Hawaiian skewers with ham and pineapple
Thread folded over slices of D’Orsogna 100% Natural ham onto bamboo skewers, alternating with chunks of fresh pineapple and cubes of cheese. Grapes and capsicum would also go well with these skewers.
5. Gluten-free Bento box
Pack rolled up slices of D’Orsogna 100% Natural ham into a sandwich-free, bento-style lunchbox featuring other tasty gluten and preservative-free food you know your kids will like. Include fruits like strawberries, watermelon and grapes, cut up carrot and celery sticks with hummus, cubes of cheese, natural popcorn and so on to give them variety they will never get bored with!