Growing up in South Africa, it was hot. It didn’t matter what time of year it was; the highs in summer were upward of 33 degrees and even in winter the lows stayed around 21 degrees. So school lunchtime for us was pretty much the same for everyone around us – sandwiches, fruit & if you were lucky a baked sweet treat. Being Indian, the sandwiches almost always had curry in them.
Fast forward 20 years, and I now have my own kids. Lunchtimes in New Zealand seem to be very different from what I’ve seen online. No more is it just basic sandwiches and fruit. A kids lunchbox now seems to include yoghurt, boiled eggs, milk products – stuff we would have never taken to school in the heat. So of course, this presents its own problems for me.
My son starts school in July this year, and like all mums, I don’t want him standing out for all the wrong reasons or feeling left out because I don’t pack a lunchbox like his peers. If you’ve ever watched the telly show “Fresh off the Boat” or are an immigrant from a different culture, you’ll know what I mean.
So for the last little while I’ve been practising making lunches on the days he’s been home. Which is easy when he’s home, cos the lunch sits in the fridge or in the house. Now, if you were part of the generation that had the milk in schools, you’ll understand when I say warm milk is terrible gag-worthy stuff. So you see my dilemma with the yoghurt?
Anyway, so when I was asked if I could review the Munch lunch coolers, I jumped at the chance. I mean we’ve all used those brands, which say it keeps cool for 6 hours, but in reality go warm in 2? And, at the price of some of these things who wants to go testing all of them. So, I’ll be your guinea pig today.
Munch lunch coolers review
The Munch lunch coolers come in a 2 pack, decorated with kid friendly prints. You’ve got Fruit, Tuatara or Bees. The ones I received were in a bee print. Cute! So I popped one in the freezer. The instructions for freezer were well laid out and easy to understand. It said to leave in the freezer for at least an hour, and that the pack would keep cold for at least 5 hours. I left it in the freezer for 8 hours, figuring that most parents (or the kids! 😛) would pop it into the freezer by bedtime and take it out in the morning when getting everything ready to pop into the bags. By the morning it had frozen solid and I popped it into master 4.5’s lunch box, along with his sandwich, some fish sticks, yoghurt, popcorn & fruit, and left it on the bench to see how long it would last.
Ok, so I probably opened the lunchbox more than the average kid at school would, but I was interested to see if it had turned back into its liquid form. By 1pm the ice pack was no longer a solid mass, but was still cold, so would have definitely lasted until lunch time at school. One thing I would suggest though, is to perhaps wrap the ice block in a bit of paper towel. As with anything that defrosts, it does leave a bit of water standing, which could make for soggy sandwiches (if you were using it for keeping sandwich fillings colder).
So far so good 😊.
Now, with the Munch lunchbox icepack, the great thing is it’s not just a icepack! It can act as a heat pad too! Which is great when you have 2 in a pack, and 2 kids taking tumbles on a daily basis.
You can heat it up in a saucepan as well, which is great when camping, but takes a bit too long for me at home! It was easy to heat up in the microwave, even if the directions did say it was based on a 600w microwave! I have a 900w microwave (non inverter), and 1 minute on high power worked just fine, if you’re interested.
Am interested in seeing how long they last. They do look quite robust, so I’m hoping they last as long as the kid doesn’t lose it.
You can buy your own Munch lunch coolers over at the Munch Cupboard.
Thank you to Munch for providing the review products. As always all opinions in this post are entirely my own 🙂