The item Curtis Stone refuses to put in his kids' lunchboxes but his wife Lindsay will.

Australian celebrity chef and dad of two Curtis Stone, 43, knows that school lunches have changed a lot since he was a kid.

“My favourite thing back then was a sausage roll – which you can’t get in most canteens now,” the Los Angeles-based chef told Mamamia. There’s now more of a focus on health rather than convenience.”

And that shift Curtis says if reflected in the lunchboxes he and his wife, actress Linsday Price pack for their two sons, Emerson, 6, and Hudson, 3.

The pair take it in turns to do lunchbox duty, and he says he and his American-born partner’s lunchboxes are “very different”.

LISTEN: Sean Szeps talk about what it’s like to raise a girl in the modern world on this week’s episode of The Baby Bubble, Mamamia’s latest podcast for new parents:

“We both put in fruits and veggies. It can also have a sandwich, or some left overs, a wrap or a burrito.”

But the one item Curtis won’t put in that Lindsay will may be attributed to their American and Australian backgrounds.

“Being American, Lindsay is very big on Ranch dressing,” he said. “I don’t really like it. But Lindsay will cut up vegetables, and put it in the kids’ lunch boxes so they can use it as a dip. They like it, but I don’t.”

Ranch dressing is a type of thick white salad dressing made with sour cream, which is immensely popular in many American dishes, and as a condiment, in the United States – but is not so widely loved in Australia.


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In term of lunchbox politics and policies, Stone said parents are currently in a difficult situation.

“I think all parents are just doing the best they can. They want their kids to eat, so they’re packing food they know they’ll eat, so they can concentrate during the day.

“It’s really hard. There’s just as much lunch box politics here as there. That’s why [in America] lots of parents have sort of given up and just send their kids money to eat from the cafeteria.

“But that’s not really the solution, either. Because those hot lunches are full of fat and salt – which is why the kids love it.”

Eating well, especially for children, is something Stone is passionate about.

“This is why I’ve developed the Rainbow Recipes with Coles. It just makes food really simple for parents, and interesting for kids.

“The Rainbow recipes are about kids eating a rainbow of different coloured fruit and veg without being scared by it. The recipes are fun for parents to prepare and the kids will love them.”

Is there a food your child won’t eat in their lunchbox? Tell us in the comments below.

If you’d like to hear more from Nama Winston, see her stories here, and subscribe to her weekly Mamamia Parents newsletter here.

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