13 Ways to Save Money on Back-to-School

By Mary Jo DiLonardo

Pack lunch for less, buy supplies on a shoestring, and dozens of other ways to save all year long.

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Save on School Lunch

Daily spending to fill your child's lunchbox or cafeteria tray can be a huge money drain. But there are ways to let your kid eat well for less. We asked certified nutrition educator Beth Ann Bentley, founder of ilunchbox.com, for ideas.

Buy in bulk: Hit the warehouse store with a list of the lunch foods your children like most and stock up.

- Chicken fingers: Heat them in the morning and send them in a thermos along with cut-up fruit or vegetables and cheese cubes on the side.

- Ground turkey or beef: Make a big batch of meatballs and freeze them. Before school, heat some up superhot and pack in an insulated container.

- Cold cuts: Divide up portions, then freeze well wrapped. Defrost in the fridge overnight.

- Bread: Make sandwiches on frozen slices and they'll double as an icepack but defrost by lunchtime.

Market Day Survey: Packing Lunch Takes 5 Minutes

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