Plastic-Free and Reusable Lunchbox Containers

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

In the new year, I am trying to bring my lunch to work again every day, so there's a lot of lunch packing going on in our house! A while back I wrote a post about how I pack my workday lunch in reusable, non-plastic containers. And while I still swear by the products I mentioned at that time, I have a whole new list of favorites that I use for my toddler son's lunch (and in turn my own). These items are also great for storing leftovers.

Here are my go-to plastic-free and low-plastic lunchbox containers:

I have two sets of these U Konserve round nesting stainless steel containers. They're leak-proof, easy to clean, and the perfect size for little kid snacks and meal components. The company sells replacement lids (because you will lose them.) Plus, my newer set is marked with the tare on the bottom—handy if you're a bulk shopper. $18 for three.

I bought a Planet Box, but it was way too big for my toddler (and too heavy for me to schlepp to work each day). The LunchBots Trio is a better size and weight for my kid and it's 100% plastic-free (though not leakproof, FYI!). $25.

We did, however, really like the Planet Box accessories: the Little Dipper (great for small-portion things like hummus or raisins) and the Big Dipper (the right size for portioning out yogurt or applesauce). The bigger ones are great plastic-free, leak-proof alternatives to the U Konserve containers I love. $5.25 for small and $10.25 for large.
We have a Kleen Kanteen water bottle, which our son loves, but for those on the quest for totally plastic-free option, the Pura Kiki 11 0z. water bottle, which converts from baby bottle to sippy cup to straw cup is make from only stainless steel and silicone. $20 to $25 each.

And here are the things I'm still working on:
I'm still trying to find my ideal alternative to zip-top plastic bags, so any suggestions are welcome. I have some Lunchskins, but they are a pain to launder (the Velcro always sticks to something). The Stasher silicone bags (above) are good, but also tricky to clean (especially for those of us without dishwashers). 

As an alternative to disposable bags or wraps, I am very curious try Bee's Wrap; my sister-in-law uses these for her kids. 

Finally, I dream of a plastic-free sippy cup, similar to the wildly popular Munchkin Miracle cup. Maybe I need to manufacture it myself? What are your favorite plastic-free ways to pack kids' and grown-ups' lunches?



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