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Tips for easy school meal preparation.

If you’re a parent of school-age children, the mornings are often a blur of lost socks and last-minute requests piled on top of the standards of breakfast, getting dressed and packing school bags. Add to this the need to fill lunch boxes for the busy day ahead, and the morning becomes even more jam-packed.

If you crave a smoother passage out the door in 2020, we’ve got one piece of the puzzle covered. Enter lunchbox hack #128. If sandwiches - made best with delicious home-baked bread - are a lunchbox staple in your household, why not try making them in batches over the weekend and freezing them ahead of time?

Baking your own bread for sandwiches has never been easier thanks to Laucke’s range of Bread Mixes. Just choose your favourite loaf and follow these simple instructions.

It’s always more efficient to prepare in bulk, saving the tedious time and effort of taking all the same ingredients out of the fridge or pantry each morning. We recommend making at least a week’s worth at a time and freezing them, and if the kids are around when you’re making their lunches, get them to help – it might encourage them to eat what’s packed!

With a bit of care, it’s easy to ensure your make-ahead sandwiches pass the kids’ taste test - just follow our tried-and-tested pieces of advice below.

Take them out the night before

To avoid your sandwiches still being half frozen at lunchtime, take them out the night before they’re required and place them in the fridge. This will also help prevent them going soggy. You can even pack them into the lunchbox the night before along with other snacks and fruit as they will continue to defrost and be ready for the next day.

Note: Other frozen snacks like scones or slices can also be taken out the night before and placed straight into the lunchbox from the freezer, ready to grab and go in the morning.

A bit of butter can help

Providing your kids would normally eat a sandwich with butter or margarine, continue to make the sandwich as you normally would prior to freezing.

Add your salad after

Foods that have a high-water content don’t tend to freeze so well, so sandwich fillings like lettuce and cucumber should be added after the sandwiches are taken out of the freezer. Tomato shouldn’t be too much of a problem as long as it is patted dry with paper towel and contained between other fillings like cheese or meat.

Wrap them tightly

Reducing the exposed surface area of the sandwiches minimises the possibility of freezer burn which dries out the bread. So, whether you use plastic or reusable wrap, snaplock bags or alfoil, make sure to wrap them well to avoid contact between the bread and the cold temperatures of the freezer.