Vegetable Upma – Kids Lunch Box /Dinner 

With Mixed Nuts Ladoo and Baked Chickpea crackers: 


  Do you like to eat Home cook food during Holidays and spend less time in kitchen . I shared three simple ans easy recipes you can prepare in very less time. Why I named this as Vegetable Upma ? I added good amount of Veggies. Preparing DINNER or KIDS LUNCH BOX in 15 minutes . Sounds good right . Enjoy this tasty One pot meal with Lime Juice pickle or little sugar. For Kids Lunch Box I packed with MIXED NUTS LADOO and BAKED CHICKPEA CRACKERS. I shared link for both. Vegetable Upma is a Simple and tasty One pot meal for Lunch /Dinner / Kids Lunch Box. If you don’t like Upma you will like this combination with  Vegetables. This is a quick fix Dinner for me over the weekends or on days when I have to take Kids for After school activities. It takes less than  15 minutes to prepare and cook from start to finish . As I roast Vermicelli and Sooji I quickly chop vegetables or use FROZEN MIXED VEGETABLES  or in my free time I roast Vermicelli ,sooji  with some chopped Onions , Green chillies and Ginger and store in a Glass container . All I  need is to add some Chopped Vegetables and Water. Don’t forget to Squeeze Lime Juice at the end . It adds Sour taste to  Upma and feel like eating more. Once you finish cooking leave on the stove with lid half open and fluff it up after 10 minutes. You can pack for KIDS LUNCH BOX as it taste good at room temperature . 

Serve this Vegetable Upma with little sugar (Optional) or Lime juice Pickle or no need of any side as it taste good on its own . Follow my recipe to enjoy a tasty One pot fluffy and tasty Upma  .How much WATER to add and how to Cook a fluffy Upma and not Mushy . 

RECIPE for 4 . PREPARATION and COOKING TIME : 20 minutes .


1. Whole wheat vermicelli – One measuring cup

2. Semolina ( Sooji) or Fine wheat rava ( Cracked wheat) – 1/4 th cup

3. Vegetables – Chopped Onion – Medium , Chopped Potato – 1 Bite size, Chopped carrots , Beans, Corn and Peas  , Chopped tomatoes – 2 

4. Juice of Lime – 1/2 to 1 according to your taste.

5. Oil – 2 tbsp

6. Curry leaves and finely chopped Coriander leaves

7. Water – 2 1/2 Measuring cups

8. Roasted peanuts and Cashews – Handful each

9. Split Black urad dal – 1 tbsp , Cumin seeds and Mustard seeds – 1/2 tbsp each

10 . Chopped Green chillies – 2 to 4 ( Zero spicy or Mild spicy ) and Chopped Ginger – 2 tbsp


1. Roast Semolina ( Sooji ) and Vermicelli with 1/2 tbsp Oil . Transfer to a bowl .

2. In the same pan heat 1 tbsp Oil and add Split Urad dal , Cumin seeds and Mustard seeds followed by chopped Onions , Chopped Potato and Mixed vegetables . Season with salt . Add Curry leaves.

3. When Vegetables are cooked add Chopped tomatoes and  water . Mix well . Bring to Boil . Now taste the water for salt and add accordingly.

4. Pour the roasted Sooji and Vermicelli slowly into boiling water and mix without lumps. Cover and cook . Stir in between gently . Once the water is evaporated  switch off the stove . Add roasted Peanuts and Cashews . Mix gently . 

5. Add chopped Green chillies , Ginger , Chopped Coriander. Keep lid half and wait for few minutes. Fluff it up with fork . Squeeze juice of Lime. ( Note – I like to add Green chillies and Ginger at the end so the Upma won’t be spicy for Kids)

Pack for Lunch Box or Serve warm for Dinner/ Weekend Lunch . Taste good warm or at room temperature. 



 10 Grab and Go  vegetarian  Lunch Boxes  for Kids ( all ages)

My elder one goes so early to School( 7 a.m)  and sometimes it is not possible for me to Cook so early in the morning. I prepare night before and refrigerate. Morning she will warm for One minute and Pack in her Lunch Bag along with Fruit or Dessert without disturbing my sleep. She likes all these Lunch Boxes I shared . Sometimes she stays back for After school activities and these Lunches keep her full till she comes back home.As kids get Older they like proper food for Lunch time and I’m comfortable Cooking night before instead of early morning. Some days  I do preparation day before and Cook in the Morning( Less than 10 minutes) . So far I have Packed 100 unique Lunch Boxes for them . Some of them I cook early morning and Some night before and refrigerate . I even pack the same for my Younger one . She also likes them in her Lunch Box. I’m sharing some DESSERTS I pack for their Lunch Box ( 15 Desserts in One page) .

The recipes I shared are prepared with 5 main Ingredients and take 30 minutes to Prepare and Cook and One Pot meals with Fruit or Dessert .

RECIPE LINK FOR DESSERTS TO PACK FOR LUNCH BOX AND AFTER SCHOOL SNACK ( 15 Desserts in One page) . Most of them doesn’t need cooking.

Recipe link for Desserts :

1. RASAM VADA prepared with LENTILS and Lots of coriander is perfect to pack for Kids Lunch Box . Taste good at room temperature. Kids are going to like the sweet taste of Vada with Simple Tomato  rasam. Prepare day before and refrigerate. Warm for One minute  and Pack for Lunch Box . vada

2.BARLEY SALAD WITH ORANGE HONEY MUSTARD DRESSING . DESSERT MIXED NUTS AND SEEDS LADOO. My kids say Barley almost taste like Pasta. Easy to prepare and taste good at room temperature.

3. CABBAGE BALLS – NOT DEEP FRIED. Simple recipe prepared with 5 ingredients and taste good next day if you refrigerate day before. There won’t be any change in the taste . Cooking time : 5 minutes for 2 Kids Lunch boxes .  Preparation time :15 minutes balls

4.SEMOLINA URAD DAL PAKORA. They are so tasty and I guarantee Kids will bring back their empty Lunch Box. With everyday ingredients ( 5 main ingredients) from your pantry .

5.GREEN LEAFY VEGETABLE RICE with PLAIN CURD and BEANS SALAD. It is a very tasty rice recipe you can pack for Lunch Box . I added 3/4 th Box of greens to prepare this recipe . Easy way to feed Greens for Kids . I shared 2 Spice powders to add at the end . Choose one and try . Leafy 

6. QUINOA FRITTERS – Prepared with Lentils and Quinoa . Grind the batter with Green Chillies , Onion , vegetable of your choice and Ginger which will supress the Pungent smell  and bitter taste of Quinoa and add finely chopped Vegetables . Kids will never notice Quinoa in these fritters. 

7.MASALA PANEER POHA ( Red rice Poha) WITH CAKE COOKIES AND MURUKU. It takes less than 15 minutes to prepare in the morning. Paneer and Poha( flattened rice) will soak up all the juices from Vegetables and Spices and taste good by Lunch time.

8.GREEN MOONG UPMA . Kids  are going to like the soft bite of Green moong with other ingredients. Cook Green moong day before and refrigerate . So they won’t get mushy . 5 main ingredients with Cooking time – 10 minutes

9. Lentils vegetable Upma. My kids favorite Lunch Box because it is tangy , soft and taste good at room temperature with yogurt. I added good amount of vegetables. Simple and easy recipe .

10. soft and fluffy Idli’s with 2 different Chutney’s. You can pack with any one of the Chutney . Prepare Idli and Chutney day before. warm Idli’s for one minute before you pack . Chutney will come to room temperature by Lunch time. 



DIWALI DESSERTS – Sweet potato coconut rolls, Coconut Pistachio rolls, Adirasam ( Short cut method)  and Spinach vada. Easy Dessert recipes prepared with 5 ingredients . All ingredients you can find easily in your pantry .Preparation and cooking time – Less than 30 minutes 

Last week I shared Coconut Pistachio Ladoo . I thought I would try with different flavors ( like Apple, Pear, Carrot or Beetroot ) as I have sweet potatoes in my household( I buy big bag for everyday cooking) . I realized that I didn’t try any dessert with sweet potato, so I gave it a try . The rolls turned out tasty . You don’t need to spend much time to Cook as it took less than 20 minutes to prepare. I made this with 8 Ingredients that you will have in your pantry . Try for Diwali and you can pack for Kids Lunch Box and after school snack. Here is the recipe . 

Some of the Diwali recipes that I prepared .  Sweet potato Coconut Rolls , Coconut pistachio Ladoo , Adirasam ( Short cut method) No need of Soaking and Grinding rice. They almost taste the same . Recipe for 20 Adirasam . No need to rest the dough . Shallow fried in Minimum Oil . SPINACH VADA .


RECIPE for 20 Medium rolls .

Preparation time and Cooking time :   20 minutes


One cup = Measuring Cup 

1. Sweet Potato – 2 ( Cooked and Mashed ) ( Wrap Sweet potato in wet paper towel and cook in Microwave for 3 minutes ( 1 +1+1 ) stop microwave for every one minute. 

2. Dry coconut – 1 1/2 cup

3. Jaggery – 3/4 th cup or accordingly

4. Milk – 2 cups 

5. Ghee – 1 tbsp

6. Sooji ( Semolina) – 3 tbsp or Fine Wheat rava or Roasted Upma mix or Wheat ladoo flour .

7. Cardamom – 6 ( Powdered )

8. Chopped Mixed nuts – 1/2 cup


1.Dry roast Sooji in 1/4 th tbsp Ghee and transfer to a Bowl .

2. In a wide pan add Dry coconut ,  Cooked and mashed Sweet potato , Milk and Powdered Jaggery . Mix and cook on a Medium high flame for 5 minutes. Stir in between to avoid the burning.

3. After 5 to 7 minutes  add roasted Sooji ( Semolina) and ghee . Cook until it thickens ( say 5 minutes) .

4. Add chopped nuts and Cardamom . Mix well and Switch off the stove.

5.Cool before you make rolls. 

COCONUT PISTACHIO LADOO . Chewy and tasty . 5  Ingredients with very less Cooking time . Preparation time : 5 minutes .

ADIRASAM ( SHORT CUT METHOD) with SPINACH VADA / No need to Soak rice and Grind. No need to rest the dough. Preparation time- 10 minutes . Cooking time – 15 minutes


 If your KIDS like Pasta in Lunch Box and don’t want to pack with Cheese Here are some Pasta recipes WITH CHEESE  and WITHOUT CHEESE . Easy way to add vegetables ( Healthy and Bland vegetables )in their favorite sauce , so they can’t pick and keep aside. Here are some  VEGETARIAN PASTA RECIPES for KIDS LUNCH BOX, DINNER and WEEKEND LUNCH .

         15 minutes Pasta recipes ( Cooking time) for Kids Lunch Box/Dinner/Weekend Lunch . I pressure cook pasta for fast and perfectly cooked Pasta. Add water , little salt and Pressure cook for 2 to 3 Whistles on medium high heat. I cook Pasta day before and Chop vegetables , so it is easy to prepare Lunch Box in the Morning.

1. VEGETABLE PENNE PASTA WITH DATES SAUCE  is a Simple and easy Lunch Box recipe prepared with 3 Vegetables , Penne Pasta and Dates sauce . If Kids are not interested in eating Dates , then try in Pasta sauce. Pasta cooked in  Pressure Cooker . penne pasta with dates sauce

2.KIDS LUNCH BOX – GREEN MAC AND CHEESE ( PRESSURE COOKER RECIPE) : I cook Pasta in Pressure Cooker for fast and Perfectly cooked PASTA .This is  a White sauce Pasta recipe with Green Vegetables. Chop vegetables finely . Kids will not notice the Vegetables . With a touch of Spices .  perfectly  cooked Pasta  in pressure cooker to save time . lunch box

3. PENNE PASTA WITH SPINACH NUTS SAUCE AND WITHOUT CHEESE .  You will never notice that Cheese is missing in this Pasta recipe .Pasta cooked in Pressure Cooker for fast and perfectly cooked Pasta . pasta

4.Kids Lunch Box – MASALA PENNE PASTA WITH VEGETABLES . I cook PASTA in Pressure cooker for fast and Perfectly Cooked Pasta. I hided Cauliflower in this Pasta recipe along with other grated Vegetables. Kids cannot find and pick them out  as they get mixed with Pasta sauce. Lunch Box

5.PASTA WITH FARM FRESH VEGETABLES : Flavorful and delicious macaroni Salad prepared with Farm fresh Vegetables with Home made Dressing. with farm fresh vegetables

6. PASTA IN WHITE SAUCE  with Asparagus and Spices .Easy way to hide Healthy and Bland vegetables in their favorite sauce. It is rich in look and taste without adding too much Cream and Cheese . in white sauce with Asparagus 

7.ZERO OIL SOUP with VEGETABLES AND  PASTA. I added a special sauce which enhances the taste of Pasta and you can’t stop eating . One pot to cook and One pot to  clean . Oil 

8. PENNE PASTA WITH VEGETABLES . I cooked Pasta in Pressure Cooker for fast and Perfectly cooked Pasta. Simple recipe with few Ingredients and easy to Cook in the morning( 10 Minutes) . I didn’t add sauces as it for Lunch Box . pasta

9. VEGETARIAN PASTA OMELETTE for BREAKFAST /DINNER  . 5 Ingredients recipe. with VEGETABLES . A little change from regular Breakfast .  Serve warm . Kids are going to like the Soft bite of Pasta with Other ingredients. Mix and prepare . No need to rest the batter. pasta 


Lentils Soup

11. SPICY LENTIL SOUP with WHOLE GRAIN ELBOW PASTA. I do preparation in the morning and bring to boil before serving. No need to add any flour for thickening. It is one of favorite soups and easy fix for any meal. lentil soup

12. PASTA SALAD for Lunch Box. If your kids like Pasta , they will like this Pasta SALAD with Beans and Veggies  .  salad 




Cabbage Pakora – Kids Lunch Box 

Cabbage and Cauliflower are two vegetables which I cook in the following week as they have more shelf life. For today’s Lunch Box I prepared Cabbage fritters or Pakora( if you shallow fry. with 1/2 cup Oil ) or Pancakes ( If you pan fry) or Cabbage Paniyaram( need 1 or 2 tbsp Oil) if you cook in paniyaram pan . You can even  cook in Paniyaram pan as the batter is not runny and you can shape them like a ball. Need to cook on Medium flame on four sides . I added semolina ( Sooji) so the Cabbage fritters will be Crispy even when they are cooled and absorb very less Oil if you shallow fry. What you will love about these fritters you can add small head of Cabbage or Half of Big cabbage. Interesting way  to add Cabbage to your diet . They are crispy and tasty .  I even added Spinach for some green color. You can add Spinach or Coriander . Here is the Simple recipe with 5 Ingredients . 

PACK for Kids LUNCH BOX with FRUIT : 

RECIPE for 30 to 40  . PREPARATION  and COOKING TIME –  Less than 30 minutes 


1..Cabbage – Medium( Finely chopped) or Big One ( Half)

2. Yellow Moong dal – 1 cup and SPlit Green Moong dal – 1 cup or Yellow Moong dal – 2 Cups

3. Sooji ( semolina) – 1 cup or Oats – 1 cup or Roasted  Wheat rava(Upma mix) – 1 cup 

4. Onion – medium ( Chopped) , Green Chilli paste  – 4 ( Zero spicy or Mild Spicy) and Ginger – small piece and chopped garlic 

5. Spinach – 3 to 4 Big handfuls ( Finely chopped)

6. Oil – 1/2 measuring cup for Shallow frying or 2 tbsp Oil in PANIYARAM PAN 

7. Salt 



1. Soak Yellow moong dal and Split green moong dal for 2 hours. Wash and grind with Salt ,green chillies and ginger. Transfer to a Bowl .

2. To this add  Sooji ( Semolina) ,finely chopped Cabbage, Onion and Chopped Spinach . Mix well . Check for salt and Spices and add accordingly .


3. Warm Oil in a pan .  Take a lemon size batter and shape like vada . When Oil is warm enough slowly slide the Cabbage Fritters. or alternatively cook in the Paniyaram pan .

4. Cook on both sides until golden Brown .

5. Pack for Lunch Box or for Weekend Lunch .


100 Vegetarian Lunch Box Ideas for Kids ( all ages)  with Ten Lunch Box Desserts / After school snack :

             All LUNCH BOX RECIPES I shared taste good at Room temperature. I pack One Pot Meal in Lunch Box . So kids can finish their Lunch , Fruit or Dessert in given time . with Preparation time – 15 Minutes Day Before and Cooking time – 15 minutes ( Morning) . You don’t need to think what to PACK for KIDS LUNCH BOX for next 3 months ( 100 days) without repeating. With every day INGREDIENTS from your Pantry. With 5 main Ingredients

TEN LUNCH BOX DESSERTS/AFTER SCHOOL SNACK. Most of the recipes I shared doesn’t need Cooking . 


                  If your kids like Pasta in Lunch Box and don’t want to pack with Cheese , here are some Pasta recipes. If your kids trouble to eat Vegetables in Lunch Box or Dinner try these Pasta recipes. Hide in their favorite sauce. They can’t pick and keep aside. I pressure Cook Pasta for fast and Perfectly cooked Pasta. Simple and easy recipes prepared with every day ingredients with Cooking time ( 15 minutes) in Morning. 


20 INSTANT POT LUNCH BOX IDEAS. They will be ready even before your Kids wake up . 5 Main Ingredients and 15 minutes Cooking time in the Morning. 

Recipe Link : 

1. 5 Vegetarian Lunch Box Ideas for Kids ( all ages) with Dessert ( Daliya Cracked Wheat ) 


  1. CABBAGE BALLS with DATES TAMARIND CHUTNEY. 5 Ingredients recipe . Prepare  Day before and refrigerate . Mix everything in the Morning  and Cook in paniyaram Pan . It takes 5 minutes to cook 10 Cabbage balls .

2. GREEN RICEwith Beans Salad and Plain Yogurt( Curd) . Yogurt is the perfect combination for Green rice. Easy way to feed lot of Greens for Kids . I shared two spice powders to add at the end . Choose one and try . it takes 15 minutes to prepare the Lunch Box as I do preparation Day before . 

3. BARLEY SALAD with ORANGE HONEY MUSTARD DRESSING. Try this over the weekend before packing into Lunch Box. My kids say it taste like soft Pasta. Mix everything with dressing and pack  with Dessert and fruit .

4. RASAM VADA prepared with LENTILS and lots of CORIANDER. Easy to prepare and taste good Warm or at Room temperature. 5 main ingredients. Shallow fried with minimum Oil . You can pack with Simple LIME RASAM . 

5. CAULIFLOWER CORN RICE with HOMEMADE MASALA POWDER and VEGETABLE RAITA. If you are looking for new recipe to pack for Lunch Box with Cauliflower here is the Simple recipe prepared with few ingredients with Cooking time – 15 minutes ( Morning) and preparation time – 15 minutes day before .






Some are Instant . Just mix the INGREDIENTS  and steam for 13 minutes. Some recipes need SOAKING ( 3 TO 4 hours) , GRINDING ( 5 minutes in a regular Blender) and FERMENT overnight . FERMENTATION helps in PROTEIN DIGESTION and IDLI will be Soft and Fluffy . Healthy Idli recipes

6. TEN LUNCH BOX IDEAS WITH DIFFERENT GRAINS . One Pot Meal with Preparation time – 15 minutes Day Before and Cooking time- 15 minutes ( Morning)

7. Ten Poha ( Flattened Rice ) ( Brown rice Poha or Red rice poha or White rice Poha ) recipes to pack for KIDS LUNCH BOX. 

8. TEN TODDLER FRIENDLY SELF FEEDING PANCAKES and PATTIES . You can pack for Kids Lunch Box too. Everyday Ingredients ( 5 main ingredients) . Mix the ingredients and prepare patties or Pancakes. Preparation time – 15 minutes ( Day Before) Cooking time – 15 minutes ( Morning)