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Easy and healthy back-to-school lunches that kids will love

by Emily Slawek / / Source: TODAY

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If you've ever heard the words "ewww, Mom" in the morning, you know that figuring out a perfect school lunch can feel like an impossible task.

The goal: find something that can be served cold or at room temperature, packed the night before and not get soggy, doesn't take too much time and passes the all important "ewww" test. Sigh. Don't give up hope just yet — here are 11 school lunch ideas to make your life easier.

Mini monster sandwiches

Turn a ham-and-cheese into a cute way to say boo!

RELATED: 5 tips for making a sandwich that's actually better the next day

back to school lunches, cute lunch, back to school
TODAY

Minion bento sandwich

Feeling creative? Make these Minion sandwiches that are almost too cute to eat.

Laura Fuentes / MOMables

Cookie dough yogurt

Banish boring yogurt and whip up this sweet version that tastes like cookie dough.

school lunches
Lisa Storms

Dolphin bento box

In this ocean-themed lunch, dolphin-shaped sandwiches swim with Goldfish cracker friends, while a clementine orange boat (outfitted with a cheese sail) floats on a blue Jell-O sea. Cute cucumber starfish pep up the vegetable.

Laura Fuentes / TODAY

Healthy "pizza" lunch

Mix up the toppings so your kids can customize their "mini pizzas" using pita triangles and/or cucumbers as a base.

RELATED: Tips and products to pack school lunch without breaking a sweat

PB & J Sushi
PB & J SushiPopsugar Food

PB&J sushi sandwiches

Jazz up an ordinary PB&J by making this kid-friendly sushi.

back to school lunches, easy lunches
Casey Barber / TODAY

Modern muffaletta sandwich

Building the perfect non soggy sandwich is all about strategic layering. This sandwich only gets better as the ingredients sit together.

RELATED: Sandwich smarts: Surprising (and easy!) tips for building a better sandwich

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Popsugar Food

Message in a bottle sandwich

Letter and shape cookie cutters are the key to this super cute way to say "good luck" before a big test.

RELATED: 5 cute and creative bento box lunch ideas for kids

Samantha Okazaki / TODAY

Pealafels

These falafel balls made with peas are a kid-friendly take on the Middle Eastern dish and a smart way to sneak in more veggies. We admit, it might be a stretch for picky eaters, but once they taste it, they'll love it.

back to school lunch
Donatella Arpaia's recipe for homemade meatballs - perfect for a spaghetti dinner or mini sliders for lunch. - August 19, 2015Samantha Okazaki / TODAY

Mama's meatballs

Whip up these meatballs for a school night dinner and use the leftovers for lunch in a sandwich. They're just as good served cold or at room temperature!

RELATED: Cool for school: Could one of these 10 school lunch ideas replace the ol' PB&J?

back to school lunches
Popsugar Food

I heart panini

Show your kids your love through food with these adorable panini.

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