Pack a little Hanukkah inside your lunch box

This is a guest post by my friend Sarah of Bentoriffic. – Kelly

Pack a little Hanukkah inside your EasyLunchboxes

As early as my daughters could speak and understand a bit of holiday cheer, we began reading books about Hanukkah and playing with dreidels (decorative wooden tops) at our house.

Packing Hanukkah lunchesI say this because we are a Christian family. My children have many friends who practice other religions, and as a parent I think it’s fun to learn about other cultures, religions and ways of life and want to pass this on to my children. And so this week, in our house, we take on some Jewish traditions. This year the kids are old enough to actually play the dreidel game, learn the Hebrew letters and win gelt (foil covered chocolate coins). I really like this wikihow link for Teaching Judaism to Christian children. It breaks Judaism down to basic, easy steps for explaining to children and adults who are learning.

At my local Target, I was able to find a great section of Hanukkah books, dreidels (a wooden top game for children), menorahs (candelabras), gelt (chocolate coins) and other items that make learning about Judaism fun for little ones. What better way to make learning fun for kids than books, games and fun food!?

What’s in your Hanukkah lunch box?

I’ve put together a collection of the Hanukkah themed lunches and snacks that I’ve made for my girls in our Easy Lunchboxes.

In the top left compartment are Osem Bissli, an onion flavored wheat ring snack with a gelt dark chocolate coin for decoration.  In the top right are organic raspberries.  The bottom container has cantaloupe Star of David shapes, a large apple cinnamon dairy free dreidel shaped muffin (I found the silicone dreidel muffin tin at Marshall’s in the kitchen section), large watermelon Stars of David and a plastic dreidel that I filled with cashews.  My local party store had a great selection of food picks and decorations for Hanukkah.

Star of David bento Hanukkah lunch

For this bite sized lunch, I used small squares and triangles to make a six pointed Star of David and included some more gelt coins. In the top left is applesauce with chocolate covered sunflower seeds on top with the Hebrew letter Hei. I found a dreidel shaped silicone ice cube tray at my local Marshall’s store, filled it with blueberry flavored coconut milk yogurt and froze it. The yogurt is pretty well melted by lunch if sent to school, but at home it makes a great snack.

I used my smaller Star of David cutter to punch out tortilla shapes.  I spritzed them with a bit of coconut oil cooking spray and lightly sprinkled garlic powder over them. I put them in the broiler on low & watched carefully.  They only need a few minutes and can burn quickly. The firm up into great chips in no time. I included some Wholly Salsa for dipping in an Easy Lunchboxes Mini Dippers container (lid not shown).  Also above is a scoop of vegan sour cream and in the top right is Wholly Guacamole with a Daiya brand dairy free Monterey Jack cheese Star of David.

The last lunch was my favorite to make. The two small dreidel sandwiches made with Rudi’s brand organic whole grain bread are filled with almond butter and jam.  I took a small pick to press in the Hebrew letters Nun and Shin.  I found the colorful dreidel picks at the local party shop last week and threaded some organic grape tomatoes onto them to surround the sandwiches. In the top left are organic blackberries and at the top right are Star of David shaped cantaloupe and watermelon pieces.

I would encourage every parent this holiday season to broaden your horizons and look into what other families might be doing in their homes for the holidays.

Wishing everyone a relaxing and wonderful holiday season… and happy lunch packing!

Sarah is a wife and stay-at-home mom of two little girls, Miss G (four years old) and Miss A (two years old). Aside from her love of cooking and having fun in the kitchen, Sarah is a standup paddleboarder, avid yogi, beachcomber and blogger. She started playing around with fun foods to encourage her children to eat better, and her family recently switched to a plant-based diet. She packs no-waste lunches in all reusable containers.