Rhodes to a Tastier Lunchtime: 7 Playful Ideas to Jazz Up Your Lunchbox!

by Kyla Van Heerden
Rhodes to a Tastier Lunchtime: 7 Playful Ideas to Jazz Up Your Lunchbox!

Packing a delicious and wholesome lunch for your children every day doesn’t have to be a chore. 

Get your kids excited for lunch times on busy school days by keeping their food fresh, colourful, and interesting. How? Rhodes Quality have come up with a few ideas…With these seven lunchbox recipe inspiration ideas you can lovingly prepare snacks and meals that even the fussiest kids will enjoy! 

Tuna gherkin sandwich

Packed full of protein and flavour pack up these sandwiches for your little one’s lunch boxes.

Ingredients (serves 4)Method
2 cans of tuna, well drained

1 tomato, chopped

½ red onion, finely chopped

4- 6 Rhodes Quality Sweet & Sour Gherkins, drained and chopped

125 ml (½ cup) mayonnaise

salt and freshly cracked black pepper

45 ml (3 Tbsp) flat-leaf parsley, chopped 

for serving: 8 slices buttered bread
Place the tuna, tomato and red onion in a bowl and toss to mix.

Add the Rhodes Quality Sweet & Sour Gherkins.

Add the mayonnaise and parsley and stir lightly to mix.

Season to taste.

Spoon the filling onto 4 slices of buttered bread, close with remaining slices and serve.

Tomato, salami, and cheese calzones

Pizza for lunch is always a good idea. Snack size calzones keep all the toppings tucked away and easy to eat.

Ingredients (makes 8)Method
For the pizza dough

600 g plain flour

10 ml (2 t) of salt

5 ml (1 t) sugar

1 x 10 g packet instant dry yeast

30 ml (2 T) olive oil

± 400 ml (1 ¾ C) lukewarm water

For the filling

1 x 410 g can Rhodes Quality Tomato Italian Style

100 g salami, chopped

350 g mozzarella cheese, grated

salt and freshly cracked black pepper

dried oregano
Sift the flour, salt, and sugar into a large bowl.

Sprinkle the yeast over the top and add the olive oil.

Add 250 ml (1 cup) of warm water to the flour and work the mixture together.

Continue adding the remaining water, a little at a time, until the dough is soft yet firm and is kneadable without sticking.

Knead the dough by hand for about ten minutes or until the dough is elastic and smooth.

Form the dough into a ball and place in a floured bowl.

Cover with a damp cloth and place in a warm spot to rise until it has doubled in size.

Knock down and knead again and then divide into 2.

Roll out one half of the dough to an evenly thick rectangle.

Use a saucer to cut four circles out of the dough.

Spread each circle with a generous layer of Rhodes Quality Tomato Italian Style.

Top with the salami and the mozzarella cheese.

Season with salt, pepper, and dried oregano.

Fold each circle in half and press the edges together.

Place the calzones on a lined baking tray in an oven preheated to 190° C for 15 minutes or until golden and crispy.

Peanut butter and jam sandwich cookies

A traditional twist on a PB and J, chewy and sweet lunch box treats.

Ingredients (makes ±24)Method
160 ml (⅔ cup) butter, melted

140 ml (½ cup + 1 Tbsp) brown sugar

125 ml (½ cup) white sugar

250 ml (1 cup) creamy peanut butter

1 egg

5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla essence

330 ml (1⅓) cup cake flour

5 ml (1 tsp) baking powder

5 ml (1 tsp) salt

To sandwich together:

65 ml (1 C) smooth peanut butter

Rhodes Quality Strawberry Jam
Beat together the butter, brown and white sugars, and peanut butter until smooth.

Add the egg and the vanilla essence and beat well.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. 

Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined but do not overmix.

Roll the cookie dough into 24 even sized balls and place evenly spaced out on a lined baking tray.

Flatten each cookie with a fork.

Bake the cookies in an oven preheated to 180º for 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Allow to cool.Spread the flat side of a cookie with Rhodes Quality Strawberry Jam.

Spread the flat side of a second cookie with peanut butter and sandwich the second cookie to the first.

Repeat with remaining cookies, peanut butter, and jam.

Mini burgers with tomato relish

Kiddie friendly mini burgers for a filling fun lunchbox.

Ingredients (makes 8)Method
500g minced beef

1 egg yolk

5 ml (1 t) dried mixed herbs

5 ml (1 t) Worcestershire sauce

salt and freshly ground black pepper

30 ml (2 T) sunflower oil

To serve:
8 mini hamburger buns

Soft butter for spreading

2 Rhodes Quality Sweet & Sour Whole Gherkins, sliced

Rhodes Quality Tomato Braai Relish  
Place the beef mince into a bowl.

Add the egg yolk, mixed herbs and Worcestershire sauce.

Season the mince with plenty of salt and pepper.

Mix the ingredients together using a wooden spoon or by hand.

Once the mixture is well blended, divide into 8 equal portions and shape into small slightly flattened patties.

Brush the patties with the oil.

Heat a non-stick frying pan and grill the patties.

Turn the patties over so that they cook evenly on each side.

Grill until cooked to your liking.

To serve:
Slice and butter the mini hamburger buns.

Place a burger patty on the bottom half of each bun and top with slices of Rhodes Quality Sweet & Sour Whole Gherkins.

Top with a generous spoonful or two of the Rhodes Quality Tomato Braai Relish.

Close with the second half of the bun.

Crunchy chicken and corn salad

Kids always love crispy chicken and paired with a crunchy salad you can be sure they’re getting a lunchbox full of goodness.

Ingredients (serves 4)Method
2 chicken breast fillets, sliced

65 ml ( ¼ cup) cake flour

2 eggs, whisked

125 ml (½ cup) Hinds Southern Coating Original

Sunflower oil for frying

1 x 400 g can Rhodes Quality Whole Kernel Corn in brine, drained

100 g feta cheese

65 ml (¼ cup) mayonnaise

45 ml (3 T) flat leaf parsley, chopped

250 ml (1 cup) cherry tomatoes, halved
Toss the chicken strips in the flour and shake off any excess.

Dip the chicken strips in the egg and then toss them in the Hinds Southern Coating until evenly coated.

Deep fry the chicken strips in hot oil until golden and crispy or if you prefer air fry the chicken strips at 180° for 10 minutes or until golden and crispy.

Drain on a paper towel to remove excess oil.

To make the salad, place the Rhodes Quality Whole Kernel Corn in a medium sized bowl.

Crumble the feta cheese over the corn.

Add the mayonnaise, chopped parsley and tomatoes, and stir to mix and then season to taste.

Serve with the crispy chicken strips.

Grilled cheese and jam jaffel

Oozy grilled cheese and jam sandwiches, a quick and easy lunchbox idea.

Ingredients (serves 2)Method
4 thick cut slices of white bread

Soft butter for spreading

Rhodes Quality Apricot Jam

60 g (¼ cup) cheddar cheese, grated

60 g (¼ cup) mozzarella cheese, grated
Place two slices of bread down on a cutting board. 

Spread each slice of bread with a layer of Rhodes Quality Apricot Jam.

Mix the two cheeses together and top each with cheese. 

Butter two slices of bread and place butter side up over the filling.

Place one sandwich, butter side down, inside a heated jaffel iron or use a sandwich press if you do not have a jaffel or waffle iron.

Quickly butter the open slice of bread and close the jaffel iron.

Slowly toast the jaffel over a low flame or medium heat until golden brown.

Repeat with the second sandwich.

Serve immediately or cool and pack into lunchboxes.

Hawaiian pizza pancakes

Savoury pancakes perfect for packing. You can make these ahead of time, cool and portion to save for later.

Ingredients (makes 12)Method
1 x 50g sachet Rhodes Quality Tomato Paste

1 x 440 g can Rhodes Quality Pineapple Pieces in Light Syrup, drained

250g (2 cups) self-raising flour

1 ml (¼ tsp) salt

300 ml (1 cup +3 Tbsp) milk

1 egg

150g ham, chopped

sunflower oil for frying
Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl.

Whisk together the Rhodes Quality Tomato Paste, milk, and the egg.

Whisk the milk mixture into the dry ingredients, beating until a smooth thick batter.

Stir in the Rhodes Quality Pineapple Pieces and the ham.

Allow the batter to stand for 10 minutes.

Heat a little oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat.

Use a 65 ml measuring cup to scoop the batter onto a non-stick pan and shape quickly into rounds.

Fry only two pancakes at a time.

Cook until the pancakes have bubbles on the top, then flip them over and cook for an additional minute.

Repeat with the remaining batter.

Cool, portion and freeze for later use.

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