DIY Uncrustables {Bento Lunchboxes}

by Cate on October 12, 2012

I love Uncrustables.

There, I said it.

My favorite, for me personally, are the honey and peanut butter ones on whole wheat bread. Which are not the easiest of items to find (I’ve actually only seen that version at Target). I ate them with reckless abandon when I was pregnant with Madeline five years ago.

Uncrustables are a great grab and go lunch item for the kids’ lunch boxes. And since Nick hates crust, they sidestep that morning debate as well.

But they’re a bit expensive.

And a bit constraining.

How about we turn it on its ear?

If you make uncrustables on your own, at home, instead of buying them premade, you are in control.

With the bread choices.

And, just as important, with what you put inside.

Oh.yes.please.

When I have time, I make a big batch of them and keep them in the freezer. So in a harried early am rush for the bus/school/work, I can grab them and go. (This is a perfect activity to do while you’re making a low-maintenance dinner or on a leftover night)

They are super simple to make, they’ll save you money, and your kids will be happy.

(And as an aside, if your kids go to a peanut-free school or if your children have allergies, you can substitute peanut butter with all sorts of other yumminess … nut butter, Nutella, apple butter, get creative. And, of course, Nutella is not an every day choice. #disclaimerover)

Uncrustable - Step 1

I use a light whole wheat bread when making our uncrustables. One of the keys to making a perfect uncrustable sandwich is to spread peanut butter on *both* slices of bread. This way it makes a seal so your jelly (or other choices) don’t ooze out.

Uncrustable - Step 2

For this batch pictured, I made some with peanut butter and grape jelly for the kids, and one with peanut butter and honey for me.

Mama’s gotta eat too.

Uncrustable - Step 3

Using this gizmo from the smart folks at Wonder makes it a snap to get the crust off the bread and create that nice tight seal around the circumference of your sandwich. (For a slightly girlier version, I also use this one). Just make sure you use bread that is pretty sizeable. You’ll see that the sandwich sealer takes up pretty much the entire circumference of the piece of bread, so a smaller loaf (like Pepperidge Farm Sandwich Thins, for example) won’t work.

Uncrustable - Step 5

Easy peasy.

Uncrustable - Step 6

Once your sandwiches are done, pop them in the freezer. I’ve found the best way to freeze them is to lay them flat on a cookie sheet first, until they’re frozen, then I usually stick them in a container or Ziploc bag and grab them as needed. By the time the kids open their lunchbox at snack or lunch time, they are perfectly defrosted.

They’re happy. I’m happy. We save money, and they have a lunch item that I can feel good about.

Alright folks, I’m off for the weekend. We are heading out on a little road trip tomorrow to belatedly celebrate Nick’s birthday. Something he chose in lieu of having a birthday party with friends in August. Four kids. Me. And a little bit ‘o adventure. I think I might need extra caffeine for this one.

Until Sunday… have a good one.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Joanne October 13, 2012 at 5:22 am

I haven’t had uncrustables in FOREVER. There is definitely something so delicious about them though…more so than a regular PB+J. That’s weird, right? Love this DIY version!
Joanne recently posted..Recipe: Pumpkin Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies

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Ashley November 4, 2012 at 2:04 pm

I looooove uncrustables! I lived on them in college. I never saw ones made with whole wheat bread, but I loooove the idea of making them at home and freezing them. Great post!
Ashley recently posted..Supper Club: Nutella Dirt Cake

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Valerie May 19, 2013 at 3:09 am

Thank you for inspiration to make better lunches! My daughter thanks you too!

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