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Healthy Protein-Packed Lunch Ideas for Kids

lunch ideas for kidsIt’s that time of the year again… Summer fun is coming to a close, and now it is time to start preparing for the chaos of back-to-school season. Between finding school supplies and preparing daily schedules for the new school year, planning lunch meals may have taken a back seat.

Let McGonigle’s Market do some of the heavy lifting for a change. Here are some great suggestions on how to include protein-packed deli meats in your child’s lunch that they will love (and actually eat!)

Fast, Easy, and Healthy Lunch Ideas for Kids

Lunches made from home don’t have to be complicated and time consuming. Channel your inner child and think about foods that kids go crazy over, but with a healthy spin, such as wraps with low-fat turkey or ham and low-fat cheese, rolled on whole wheat tortillas. Make towers with whole wheat crackers, low-fat cheese and slices of turkey or ham. Mix it up with some low-fat peanut butter.

Simple and Healthy Lunch Swaps

If you are needing a quick fix to make an existing meal a better experience, sometimes something as simple as swapping out the food choices is what you gotta do. Try switching:

  • Processed, pre-packaged luncheon meats for freshly cut turkey from McGonigle’s Deli counter
  • White bread for whole wheat or multigrain bread
  • Mayonnaise for light mayonnaise or mustard
  • Soda or fruit drinks for water, skim milk, or 100% fruit juice
  • Fried chips for trail mix, air-popped popcorn, or veggies and dip
  • Cookies and snack cakes for yogurt or fresh fruit from the produce aisle

Check out our homemade sides to go.

The Top 5 Kid Favorite Deli Meats

Boar’s Head Honey Turkey

One of our most popular choices, Boar’s Head meat, is a tender, lean turkey breast, with the perfect balance of sweetness flavor to add great taste to a classic turkey sandwich. Try pairing it with one of our artisanal cheeses from Boar’s Head for a well-rounded meal.

Boar’s Head Black Forest Ham

Forget your “regular” ham sandwich and ham it up with our Boar’s Head Black Forest selection. This delicately smoked meat can be cut to your child’s liking. We recommend piling it on rye bread with turkey and mayo for a meat-packed sandwich. Does your child love salads too? Toss some on top for flavor and protein.


Besides cold cuts, we also carry delicious pastrami that’s perfectly brined and combined with savory herbs and spices before it’s smoked. If you get hungry while shopping, ask us to whip up a pastrami sandwich to go!

Genoa Salami

Get a taste of authentic Italian meat with our Genoa salami. Fresh trimmed pork combined with regional spices and seasoning is the ideal complement to cheese, and crackers or eat it alone for a quick side treat.


Our delicious and wonderfully thin sliced prosciutto is a fan favorite for its versatility. It’s perfect for kids — and you — because prosciutto is great on sandwiches, in salads, or wrap it  around cantaloupe for the perfect sweet and salty snack.

Looking to try our other crowd pleasing deli options? See our Deli meats here. Come on down to McGonigle’s Market today to stock up on deli meats. We’re located on the corner of Ward Parkway and 79th Street.

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