Healthy School Lunch Challenge

brown bag lunch

brown bag lunch

Last weekend I had the honor of judging the healthy cook-off challenge for Dr. Riba’s Health Club Event at Pretend City Children’s Museum.  For the challenge, chefs from all over Orange County prepared healthy school lunches.


Dr. Riba is a pediatrician who has devoted her medical career to the prevention and treatment of childhood obesity, diabetes and the health risks of children in need. She’s kicking pounds off kids in a non-diet, fun and approachable way.

lunch box challenge

As a mom, making those damn lunches, day in and day out, I was delighted to taste and see what others came up with. Fall isn’t even over and I’m hitting my lunchbox wall. There were so many great, practical and healthy ideas.

One tip has already revolutionized my lunch boxes. I cut apples into matchstick slices and sprinkle with about ¼ teaspoon cinnamon. The first day I tucked these apple sticks in my daughter’s lunch she came home and said all her friends wanted to try them and asked for more. It’s a crunchy, spicy treat with no added sugar and the cinnamon made her lunch box smell delicious.

apples with cinnamon

lunch box

A big thank you to Whole Foods for provided the food at the event. All proceeds benefitted the compelling and needed work done through Dr. Riba’s Health Club.

judging with kerri walsh

Incredible, Olympic goddess Kerri Walsh was a fellow judge, what an honor.

Bragging rights: Dr. Riba is none other than my amazing sister. She is my most adored and respected friend, teen idol, resident ornithologist (pigeons and chickens, of late), travel partner, and exercise cohort. I’m excited to share more about her program and tips for healthy eating in future blogs.