– Hey guys. With back to school season upon us, the lunchbox grind will soon begin. So, I wanted to give you three great ideas for packed lunches, using some leftovers you might already have sitting in your fridge. I’ll be demonstrating these lunches, in my new favorite lunchbox,
called the OmieBox. It is the most versatile lunchbox around. In fact, I just went
out and bought two for my girls and one for myself,
I think they’re so great. I’ll put all the information
in the description. Okay, so let’s pack some lunch. So, you know how you might have some leftover chicken sitting in the fridge? This usually happens to us on Monday, when we make a big
roast chicken on Sunday. So, what I do, is I take
a cup of chicken broth, pour it in a small saucepan. Add the leftover chicken. And then add some frozen
peas and frozen carrots, which I always have sitting in my freezer. And then add a little bit of dried basil. It’s a kind of herb that, I think, works really well for
kids, because it’s sweet. Simmer this mixture and then you can go ahead and pour it into
the thermos compartment. This is what I love about this lunchbox. The thermos is actually
part of the lunchbox. So, you don’t have a separate thermos that you then also have to pack. And then you can just fasten the top. And presto, your little
soup is ready to go. And then in the compartment above, I’ll pack some fresh fruit. Mangos and blueberries, as a mixture. It’s a great flavor combination and I also just think
the colors are so pretty. And then in the long
compartment to the left, what’s nice about this, is
it has a little divider. So you can move that around, depending on what you want to pack. So, I usually will just put an even split, and pack some crackers, which
is nice to go with the soup. And then, on the other side,
I’ll tuck in some snap peas. And, that is a great snack idea, moms, if you’re trying to get your
kids to eat more vegetables. Because, you can serve them
raw, so there’s a ton of nutrients in it, and they’re so sweet. They actually don’t realize they’re eating a green vegetable. Might give it a try. Okay, so next up, lunch number two. Now this is a lunch that my
eldest daughter, who’s nine, really likes me to pack for her. She is going through this stage where she loves avocado sandwiches. So, I’ll show you what I do to put a little more protein in it. So, this is a great
lunch idea when you have half of an avocado that has been sitting in your fridge and it
starts to turn brown. Well, it is the perfect size to make one of the avocado sandwiches. I’m going to scoop the flesh out. Put it in a bowl. Add a little squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Salt and pepper to taste. And then at this stage, is
where the protein comes in. I like to add a teaspoon of Tahini. If you’re not familiar with Tahini, it’s a really great sesame paste that I always have on hand
because I put it in hummus. So, if you make a lot of hummus, it’s a great thing to pick up, cause then you can use it for
the hummus and the sandwiches. And then I’ll take two
pieces of whole grain bread. I’ll spread this avocado-Tahini
mixture on the bread. And then I’ll add some sliced radishes, which just adds a little freshness. And then two tomatoes. This way, you get a few
more vegetables in there. So, with this, you can take your thermos out of the lunchbox. And then you have a nice
compartment to put a sandwich. And, you can just fit that
snugly in the lunchbox. And then for her dessert,
she really loves kiwis. So, I cut the kiwi in half, and they fit exactly into
that upper compartment. And, this is a thing that, I don’t know, I’m probably the last
person to find this out, but my French in-laws do this for my kids, where you cut the kiwis and then you use them as like a little bowl, with a spoon. I thought it was the most genius thing, and when I showed people
back here in the States, they looked at me like, yeah,
how else do you eat kiwi? Anyway, if you hadn’t seen that before, I think it’s a great
tip and the kids love it because it makes them feel like they’re eating in a little bowl. In the side compartment, I’ll
usually put some veggie chips. She likes that with the sandwich. On the other side, for a
little bit more protein, I’ll do some roasted cashews
and some golden raisins. It’s a really good combo,
cause you get that, sort of saltiness of the cashew, mixed with the sweetness of the raisin. It’s a really good combo. And there you go, second lunch down. Alright, so lunch number three. So, this is a lunch that I
really like to pack for myself, because I think there
are some great flavors that are associated with this lunch. So, you know sometimes,
when you cook too much pasta and then you end up with
some extra spaghetti and you don’t know what to do with it, so you pop it in the fridge? So, we are basically going
to take our cold spaghetti and we are going to turn them
into cold sesame noodles. Which is a really great
way to use up extra pasta. So, in a small bowl, we’re gonna combine one tablespoon of soy sauce. One teaspoon of rice wine vinegar. One small garlic clove,
that’s been minced. About an eighth of a teaspoon
of grated fresh ginger. Now, if you don’t have the
ginger, you could leave it out, but I think it adds a really
nice little sweetness to it. And then, for a little kick, I like to add 1/8 of a teaspoon of chili paste and 1 tablespoon of toasted sesame oil. Now, this is the sesame oil that is brown in color, it needs to say toasted, because that’s the sesame
oil with all the flavor. So, you’re going to whisk that up until everything is combined. And then you’re going to
take your cup of spaghetti, pop it in a small bowl, drizzle that delicious sauce on top, and then, at this stage, you really can add any vegetables you like. I like to just put some of those grated carrots that you
can buy already grated, which makes this really easy. And then one sliced scallion. Now, I also like to add a little sprinkling of black sesame seeds. And then you can give that a toss. Then, we’re going to use the
thermos compartment again, but this time it’s going
to keep our food cold. Now, at first glance, it looks
like this is a lot of noodles to fit into that little
compartment, but it totally fit. That’s the great thing about this thermos, it looks really small and compact, but it actually packs in a lot of food. And then I’m going to
pack myself some snacks. So, for a little dessert, I
like to pack some dried apples, some raisins or currents,
whatever you have on hand. And a little shredded coconut. It’s a great little combination that, you have the tartness of the apples and the chewiness of the raisins, and then that sweetness of the coconut. And then, in the long compartment, this is my little combo that I’ve discovered that is quite delicious. Where you take some of
those little pretzel nuggets and you put that on one side. And then some of those
cheddar cheese sticks that I buy for my kids, but then I
cut it up into little squares, and then it’s kind of
a two-pronged effect, you got to take one of
the cheddar cheese things with the nugget and pop it both in your mouth at the same time. It’s really good. The nice thing about this lunch is, you could make this all the night before, pop it in your fridge, and
then you are all ready to go. And it’ll keep your lunch cold for four hours after removing
it from the fridge. Alright, so there you have
it, three great lunchbox ideas using leftovers you might
already have in your fridge. I hope you guys give this
one a try this season, and let me know what you think. I’ll see you back here next week for another quick and easy recipe. Until then, bye. (happy music)