This isn’t a unique idea, but I wanted to share it anyway since I’ve been using it for quite a while. I had seen it on several blogs & in magazines and thought it was a cute idea. My daughter, Bug, LOVES samples, and will eat almost anything on a toothpick. Often she even requests for me to make her a “sample lunch” (lots of bite size items and toothpicks for utensils). So, when I saw this idea, I knew she would love it!
Turns out, I love it too! In fact, I now do it at least twice a week. I love it even more when our house is full of kids, because I like to keep lunches simple, healthy, and interesting. I line up the muffin tins and in pure assembly-line style, prepare lunch for everyone. Grapes…some here, some here, some here, some there. Cut up cheese….same routine. And on it goes.
If I include sandwiches, I only have to make 1 or 2 because everyone just gets part of one. If I heat something up, I just heat up one bowl and everyone gets a small serving in one of the tins. That’s another bonus for anyone paying attention to portion sizes – each muffin tin is approx. 1/2 cup. Good way to make sure they get their fruits & veggies if that’s a problem in your house.
You can Google “muffin tin meals” and get a tons of ideas, but here are a few of my examples.
From top-left: Apples, ranch dressing, quiche muffins, peanut butter, celery, carrots
These had frozen peas (my kids love them), apples, 1 gumdrop (made with natural coloring!), cheese & crackers, & 2 spots of plain yogurt w/applesauce mixed in.
From top-left: apples, cheese, candied ginger, homemade jello (gelatin & no-sugar-added juice), crackers, & hummus
Another take on the idea for snack time: peanuts, raisins, & mini PB crackers.
From top-left: a piece of whole wheat biscotti, green bean casserole, chicken breast, grapes, veggies, ranch dressing
Another reason I love it is because it makes my daughter do fun, creative things like dip her grapes in ranch dressing (ewww!), or make a “sandwich” with celery, carrot, green pea, and a piece of chicken. LOL