Featurettes

How to Make Your Own Veganized Lunchables

Crackers, meat, cheese, and a juice pack. What more could a vegan kid ask for?

The school year is in full-swing and with the temperature dipping, your little ones are less likely to be spending their lunch break running around outside and more likely to be relaxing indoors and eating meals with friends. Enter the Lunchable: the portable, quick and easy meal-in-a-box that has been a staple of school lunches since the 90s. Don’t let your plant-based youngster be the only one without—veganize them! All you need to do is cut some vegan meats and cheeses into bite-sized circles or squares, choose the perfect drink-and-snack combination, and you’re guaranteed a wholesome meal any kid (or nostalgic adult) will love. Here’s how to get started.

The crackers
Kashi’s Fire Roasted Veggie savory crackers are made from whole oats, hard red wheat, brown rice, and barley, and are loaded with carrot, red and green bell pepper, toasted onion, and roasted tomato.
 
Mary’s Gone Crackers’ crispy-thin Classic Super Seed crackers have a nutty flavor and all the wholesome goodness of five different seeds (such as pumpkin, sunflower, sesame, brown flax, and poppy). A healthful, unique option for your more fearless little eaters. 
 
Super simple and widely available, Triscuits’ Hint of Salt crackers offer a mega crunch with just three simple ingredients: whole grain soft white winter wheat, vegetable oil, and salt, with less sodium than leading cracker varieties. 
 
Mary’s Gone Crackers gets another mention thanks to its Kale Thins, a gluten-free offering with a classic look and a brassica surprise—made with chia, dill, sesame seeds, parsley, and organic kale flakes.
 
The cheeses
Follow Your Heart Slices—available in American, Provolone, Mozzarella, and Garden Herb—are mild flavored with a soft bite and made without artificial ingredients. Even better? They’re available in individually wrapped snacking sizes.
 
Want a near guarantee that your dairy-free slices will be quality? Try the 36-year-old flagship veg company Toffuti’s take on classic American and Mozzarella. Bonus points for being kosher parve and made with non-GMO tofu.
 
Field Roast’s fan-favorite Chao Slices are coconut-based cheeses seasoned with “Chao”-fermented tofu made by a family in Taiwan. Available in Creamy Original, Coconut Herb with Black Pepper, and Tomato Cayenne with Spicy Peppers, any Field Roast flavor is sure to please every cheese eater in your family.
 
Daiya’s sliceable, pea protein-based Farmhouse Blocks come in both soft and hard textures in spot-on renditions of Medium Cheddar, Jalapeño Havarti, Monterey Jack, and Smoked Gouda flavors. One bite, and you’ll know why the brand is one of the most widely recognized plant-based cheeses on the market.
 
The meat
Tofurky’s 10 oven-roasted, flavor-packed Deli Slices made from organic tofu are sliced thin and act as perfect inclusions for your Lunchable needs. Choose from Smoked Ham, Oven Roasted, Peppered, Hickory Smoked, Bologna, Italian, Roast Beef, and Pepp’roni.
 
Soy-based, low in fat, and preservative-free slices with a toothsome bite, some of Yves’ Deli Slices—in Meatless Bologna, Ham, Turkey, Salami, Pepperoni, Roast Without the Beef, and Smoked Chicken—have even more protein than the animal counterpart they’re modeled after!
 
Lightlife has been in the vegan meat game since 1979 and is still churning out top-notch products. Wheat-based Bologna, Ham, Pepperoni, and Turkey slices with up to 14 grams of non-GMO protein will help your tykes power through after-school practices and recitals.
 
The drinks
Apple & Eve’s Waterfruits slash the sky-high sugar content found in fruit juices by adding filtered water and electrolyte-rich coconut water for a beverage with just 10 grams of sugar. Let your child sip away on Fruit Punch Frenzy, Tropical Fruit Twister, or Very Berry Blast for a smart, hydrating drink.
 
Honest Tea’s Honest Kids juices (Berry Berry Good Lemonade, Goodness Grapeness, Cherry Go Round, Twisted Tropical Tango, Super Fruit Punch, and Appley Ever After flavors) are certified organic, non-GMO, and contain only nine grams of sugar. When packing your child’s Lunchable, we won’t tell if you decide to keep one for yourself.
 
Each of Apple & Eve’s Apple Harvest, Berry Blast, Fruit Punch, Strawberry Kiwi, and Strawberry Lemonade flavors provides one combined serving of sweet fruits and nutrient-dense vegetables such as sweet potato, beet, butternut squash, purple carrot, and tomato, all with a third less sugar than regular juices.

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