School is starting on Wednesday for us (hooray), and we will be back to brown bagging our lunches. Choosing lunch meat for sandwiches should be done with as much care as all your other groceries.
Promise me you won’t purchase lunch meat just because the word “Healthy” is splattered on the packaging! Promise?
So, what should you look for?
- Fewest ingredients rules! This is always the best rule of thumb. Some lunch meat packages contain more than 20 ingredients with the majority of them things you cannot pronounce. Always check your labels!
- Purchase organic or hormone free where available. But don’t be fooled. Sometimes, although the animals may be organic, this is no guarantee they haven’t added loads of ingredients to the lunch meat.
- “Sectioned and formed” vs. Whole cuts: Whole cuts are seasoned with salts and sugars, while sectioned and formed are various pieces of animal products, bound with artificial ingredients. Obviously choose- Whole Cuts
- Avoid Nitrates! These are carcinogens. Your children do not need nitrates.
- Best bet- Cook up whole turkey’s and slice your own. Or custom order slices from your local farmers.
Here is another thing we learned when Anna was making our Bento lunch. The lunch meat flower:
- Simply fold slice of meat in half
- Score the edge of the sliced side
- Roll into flower.
- Secure with a toothpick.
I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.Learn More about Natalie