September 2022

Food Bank Bites

Planning a Nutritious School Lunch

September is Back to School month which means it’s time to start thinking about school lunch. Whether your child enjoys school lunch or a home packed lunch, it is important they have a nutrient packed meal to fuel their bodies and minds. Below are some tips on packing a nutritious school lunch:

Get the Kids Involved

  • When kids play a role in preparing food, they are more likely to eat it. Give them age-appropriate tasks such as rinsing fruit or vegetables, retrieving ingredients, mixing, packing.

Include Food from Each Food Group

  • A balanced meal and snacks help to fuel your child’s body and provide the nutrients they need to grow and be healthy. Be sure to pack fruit/vegetables, grains, protein, and dairy.

Don’t Forget to Hydrate

  • Send them to school with their favorite water bottle and encourage them to drink the whole thing twice throughout the day. Try adding your child’s favorite fruit to the water to add flavor.

Get Creative

  • Use cookie cutters to make fun shapes out of sandwiches, place sliced fruit and veggies on a kebob stick, or add a note to your child’s lunch box.

Yogurt Fruit Dip


  • 1 cup non-fat plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar


  1. In a bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix well.
  2. Serve with sliced fruit.

Recipe courtesy of Oregon State University

Chicken and Black Bean Salsa Burritos

Yields 4 burritos


  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon group cumin
  • Salt, to taste
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast or thighs
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup shredded cheese
  • 4 (9 inch) flour tortillas


  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the beans, green onions, lemon juice, cumin, and salt.
  3. Rub the chicken with the chili powder, salt, and pepper.
  4. Cook the chicken in a skillet over medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes. Flip chicken and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165F.
  5. Let chicken cool. Slice into strips or chunks.
  6. Divide the cheese evenly between the 4 tortillas. Top with chicken and black bean salsa.
  7. Roll each burrito up and wrap in foil.
  8. Bake burritos until the cheese melts, about 15 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of Oregon State University

Do-It Yourself Trail Mix

Yields 6 cups


  • 1 cup square shaped whole grain cereal
  • 1 cup O shaped whole grain cereal
  • 1 cup puffed whole grain cereal
  • 1 cup dried fruit
  • 1 cup small pretzels
  • ½ cup nuts or seeds


  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients.
  2. Separate into snack size bags or Tupperware.

Recipe courtesy of Oregon State University


The Importance of Providing Culturally Appropriate Foods