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Your Ultimate Lunchbox Guide: 10 Tips in Choosing The Best Midday Meal Containers

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For many people, lunch is an essential meal. Especially if you skip breakfast and rely on that midday pick-me-up to refuel your body and get you ready to face the afternoon. And more importantly, to save money on takeouts by packing your own lunch.

If you are looking to purchase a good lunch container for yourself or for your kids, this 10-step guide will be useful in ensuring the noon meal you prepare makes it through half a day without spoiling, leaking, wilting, or looking like something the cat dragged in from the garbage.

The ultimate lunch pack is comprised of the main food box, a water bottle or juice container, and the lunch container which holds the previous two items. Here is a checklist of the best qualities you need to look for in the optimal lunch kit:

The Lunch Container:

1. Look for a structured frame

lunch bag 1

Source: Bonappetit

A structured container will ensure that whatever you pack doesn’t end up a soggy mixed up mess by lunchtime, be it sandwiches, salads, a rice meal, stew, or pasta. This is especially true for school-age kids who tend to throw and bang their lunchboxes around.

2. Insulation

lunch bag 2

Source: Cotton Age

This is especially important if you want to ensure your meal remains hot, or at least warm, until lunchtime comes around. True, most workplaces and schools have microwaves for this purpose, but for places that aren’t as lucky, a quality insulated lunch box is the ticket.

3. Easy to clean

lunch bag 3

Source: Amazon

The best lunch boxes are those that are easy to clean. That way, you don’t spend too much time at the end of the day doing laundry or scrubbing off smelly, spilled food. Look for lunch boxes with plastic or vinyl lining that can easily be cleaned with a wet cloth or wet wipes. If its machine-washable, go for it!

The Water Bottle:

4. Insulation, insulation, insulation

lunch bag 4

We cannot stress insulation enough. If you are packing a hot chocolate drink, coffee, cold juice or a smoothie, keeping them in the same temperature from when you started out in the morning ensures you and your child will enjoy a refreshing drink at lunchtime.

5. Leakproof

lunch bag 6

Source: Ali Express

This goes without saying. What horror to find out your drink has spilled all over your main meal, your child’s book bag, or even your laptop and clothes during the morning commute.

6. Size

lunch bag 5

Source: Mellow Mummy

How much can you drink? For many people, taking sips of water or other liquids throughout the day is very important to keep hydrated, and you should choose the correct size of water bottle for you or your kid, depending on your age, size, and hydration requirements.

The Main Lunch Box:

7. Airtight, leakproof, and easy to open and close

lunch bag 7

Source: Ensogo

If you enjoy lunches that include soups, stews, and sauces, making sure your lunch box is airtight and leakproof is the key. For kids, an easy to open and easy to close lunch box will ensure their day doesn’t end up a hungry, frustrating mess.

8. BPA-free

lunch bag 8

We’ve all heard of Bisphenol A, that harmful industrial chemical used in the manufacture of most plastics and resins, and how its been linked to cancer, prostate gland issues, and brain imbalances. Be safe rather than sorry, and choose a BPA-free lunch box at all cost.

9. Size

lunch bag 9

Source: eBay

How much do you and your child eat at lunch? More importantly, how much time do you both have to consume your midday meal? Choose a lunch box of approximate size that’s fit for you and your kid. That way, you won’t be lugging behemoth containers around, or leaving a lot of food to go to waste at the end of the day.

10. Sections

Laptop Lunches Bento Set with Sandwich and Yogurt.

Source: Time

If you’ve seen and heard of Bento box packaging, you’ll know the appetizing trend is a good way to perk up the middday meal. Choose a lunch box with separate sections for different kinds of food: rice or pasta, meat, vegetables, and even a soup or stew. Your kid will even appreciate the variety, particularly if you take great pains to create food artwork to pique the interest of a picky eater.

H/T: Smart Parenting

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