For those who are new to the gluten-free diet and are accustomed to eating sandwiches for lunch, packing a gluten-free lunch can seem like a difficult task. But really, it just takes a little bit of planning. There are lots of options! We usually pack some kind of protein with a fruit, vegetable, snack, and drink.
- Drinks — juice or water bottles, or both
- Protein — ham rolls, chicken nuggets (or leftover chicken from dinner cut into bite-size pieces), nut or seed butters on crackers, hummus, hard-boiled eggs, cheese sticks
- Fruit — apple slices, clementines, strawberries, blueberries, grapes, applesauce…whatever we’ve got in the house
- Vegetables — usually carrot sticks, but sometimes celery, snap peas, or spinach leaves
- Snack — chips, gluten-free pretzels, popcorn, Mini-Muffins
- Treats — not always, but occasionally I’ll include a gluten-free cookie or a piece of candy
- Lunch Bags – The Pack-It freezable lunch bags have worked well for us, but after two years of use, the velcro isn’t holding it closed very well anymore. So, I’m looking at ordering some of the new Pack-It Freezable Lunch Bags with Zip Closure and Strap. I’ll keep the old ones as back-up in case the kids accidentally leave the new ones at school.
- Containers — I like to use these reusable Sistema Containers. I also found these cool Slim Snack Containers that look like they would work great for smoothies, applesauce, yogurt, etc. And this 5-pack of 10 oz. water/juice bottles works great for drinks. Fill them all on Sunday night, and just grab them to put in your lunch bag each morning.
What do you like to pack for lunch? I don’t bother with sandwiches, but if that’s what you like, you might want to check out past articles on Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread and Sandwich Bread Alternatives. And, of course, there are now gluten-free bread options in the grocery stores.
Don’t forget to check below our menu for more gluten-free menus, meals, and ideas for packing lunches.
Celiac Family’s Menu This Week:
Monday – Chicken Taquitos, Guacamole, Cilantro Rice
Tuesday – Beef Kabobs, Sweet Potato Wedges, Roasted Broccoli
Wednesday – Seven Layer Salad with Creamy Dill Dressing or ingredients in a lettuce wrap
Thursday – Teriyaki Chicken Tenders, Rice, Green Beans
Friday – Grilled Salmon, Spaghetti Squash, Simple Asparagus
Saturday – Hamburger Stroganoff with gluten-free egg noodles, Spinach Salad
Sunday – Trying new gluten-free pizzas: Freschetta and Daiya
Gluten Free Menu Swap Roundup
Mom’s Plans: Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free
Melissa’s homeschooling family doesn’t need to pack lunches for school. Instead, they are busy moving into their new house. Melissa will be making quick and easy meals to keep them fed during the chaos. Their meals this week will be Chicken Pot Pie, Paleo Crockpot Chili, Crockpot Chicken Soup, and Ground Beef Goulash. Check out all the recipe links on her full menu.
The Girl Who Couldn’t Eat Anything: eating without Gluten, Dairy, Peanuts, Oats, or Meat
Elisabeth packs several snacks for her kindergartner when a lunch is needed. It may include trail mix with chocolate chips, crackers with nutbutter, a fruit stick, a cookie or lollipop, lunchmeat, and sometimes just a regular nutbutter and jelly sandwich. She also sent her some mac ‘n cheese with leftover chili in her old Star Wars Thermos. (yum!) For dinner this week, she’ll be having Waffles, Cauliflower Alfredo, Broccoli Bacon Tomato Pasta Salad, Spaghetti and Meatballs, Milkshake with Popcorn, and Pizza. Check out her full menu for more breakfast ideas, and recipe links.
The Peaceful Mom: Simple Gluten-Free Menu
Kimberlee has some fun Apple Sandwiches on her lunch menu this week, as well as Turkey Lettuce Wraps and Tuna Salad. Her dinners this week will be One Pan Chicken and Mushrooms, Super Easy Hot Wings, Baked Tacos, Pork Chops, GF Pizza, and GF Waffles. Check out her entire post for more lunch and breakfast ideas, and recipe links.
The Gluten Free Week: Gluten-Free
Lori says they like to eat leftovers for lunch, but also shares ideas for making and packing wraps. She uses Gluten-Free Rice Tortillas to make California Wraps and Hummus and Veggie Wraps. Dinner for her family this week will be Pork Chops, Simple Weeknight Chicken, Beef Stew in the crock pot, Pork Stir-Fry, Turkey Burgers, and Chicken Nuggets. Stop by GlutenFreeWeek for all the recipe links.
Thanks for joining us this week. Come back next week for more gluten-free menus, recipe links, and ideas for gluten-free snacks.
Want to join Gluten-Free Menu Swap?
- For this week’s roundup, email your menu link to celiacfamily[AT]gmail[DOT]com. Or, simply put your menu link in the comments below.
- Join us again next week at CeliacFamily for sharing gluten-free menus and ideas for Gluten-Free Snacks.
- The Gluten-Free Menu Swap Page has the current schedule of themes and hosts. If you’d like to host a future week, please send me an email (celiacfamily[AT]gmail[DOT]com) with your preferred date and theme.
Need more menu ideas?
- Laura at OrgJunkie.com hosts Menu Plan Monday every week. You’ll find links to hundreds of meal plans (not necessarily gluten-free) there.
- Or, check out some of my past menu plans.