My six year old is a fussy eater. Always has been. Every day is a struggle to get him to eat without whinging about something or other. Check out my previous post about dinner time if you want to understand my level of frustration 🙂 Add to that trying to make his lunchbox for school interesting, and some days I just want to pull my hair out.
And now it is winter, I want to make sure he is keeping warm at school – Canberra is like a freezer at the moment. I’ve discovered how to get him to eat yummy (and healthy) food without whinging, and keeping him warm.
I’ll share my secret weapon with you.
A fancy-pants insulated Thermos jar. Not just any Thermos jar – it’s a FUNtainer insulated food jar with awesome fire engines on it. As soon as he saw it, his eyes lit up and he told me it was like the one his friend in his class has. Instant cool points for me.
Ok, so he loves the Thermos. Now how do I get him to use it? He told me his friend at school with the Thermos jar has left over spaghetti bolognese in his. If only he’d eat that…
So I asked him what would he like to take to school in it. His answer – my pumpkin soup.
So I whip up a batch (please, do not tell him I chuck about a cup of lentils into the soup for extra goodness, he’ll never eat it again if he finds out!), and test it out.
It stays warm easily until lunchtime for him (the FUNtainers are supposed to keep food hot for up to five hours), and – he eats it! (And most importantly, he can unscrew the lid by himself so he can actually get to the soup!)
Fist bump for me! High fives to the fire engine FUNtainer! I am feeling like Supermum.
I see the Thermos getting a LOT of use over the cold winter – including hot chocolate at weekend soccer…
I’m happy to share my pumpkin soup recipe for you to try out – hopefully your kids will love it too and want it for school!
Emma’s Pumpkin (and lentil, shhh) soup
1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
1 chopped onion
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
Glug of olive oil
1 butternut pumpkin, or about half a decent sized pumpkin, chopped and peeled
1 cup dried red lentils
Chicken or vegetable stock to cover
Add oil, ginger, onion and cumin seeds to large saucepan. Cook until onion starts to go translucent (a few minutes). Add pumpkin and lentils. Add stock so it just covers the pumpkin. Bring to boil, then reduce to simmer and let cook for about 20 minutes. Transfer soup to a food processor or blender, and blend until it is smooth. Portion out to containers for lunches, then just heat up in the morning before pouring it into your Thermos FUNtainer to pop into the kids school bags.
I add a cheese and bacon scroll in our six year old’s lunchbox for him eat with the soup. Boys seem to love to dunk food into food. No scraps or leftovers come home in his bag. Got to be happy with that!
Maybe if I serve every dinner for him in the FUNtainer, he’ll eat it… Hmm, there’s an idea…
I’ve also got the matching fire engine FUNtainer stainless steel vacuum insulated drink bottle and a plain Foogo vacuum insulated drink bottle for the boys to use – they will keep their water cool all day when we’re out and about. I hate having to buy overpriced bottles of water when we’re out, I’d much rather have a decent stainless steel bottle (no BPA) that we can reuse.
Fancy a FUNtainer or the drink bottles too? Get yours from Toys ‘R Us and Babies ‘R Us. They also have other cool designs to choose from.
Let me know how you go with sending a hot lunch to school with your kids, and if they liked my pumpkin soup 🙂
Make sure you’re following Life, kids and a glass of red on Facebook for extra giggles and snippets of silliness!
Linking up with Essentially Jess for #IBOT