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How to Make a Bird Themed School Lunch Featuring Walnut Chicken Salad and Chocolate Bird's Nests

Monday, September 2, 2019

This is a sponsored post in partnership with California Walnuts. All opinions are my own.
How to Make a Bird Themed School Lunch featuring California Walnuts

"If only the best birds sang, the forest would be silent." - Henry Van Dyke

There's something so silly, inspiring, and fun about birds! Growing up we had chickens, but we also had a couple of parakeets. We ended up putting the parakeets in the chicken coop and you know what happened? They became best friends with the chickens and even started to act like them. That is until the parakeets found a way out and flew away together. Oh well. Bird shaped food is a fun addition to any lunchbox. This bird sandwich is filled with tasty chicken salad featuring toasted California Walnuts!

How to Make a Bird Themed School Lunch featuring California Walnuts


I love how versatile walnuts are. You can throw them in smoothies, sprinkle them on salads, or even cover them in chocolate, like I did with the birds nest treat in this lunch! In a recent survey, 78% of Americans said that taking time to recharge at lunch is important, yet only 27% eat foods at lunch that help them have the energy to make it through the day. This school year California Walnuts wants you to #ChooseLunch so that your whole family can choose the right foods to be successful from morning to night! This bird lunch can definitely help with that, so keep reading to find out how to assemble it for your kids.

How to Make a Bird Themed School Lunch featuring California Walnuts

You don't have a problem if we start with dessert do you? These birds nest treats only require four ingredients and a few minutes to make. Melt chocolate chips in a bowl. Mix well with toasted California Walnuts and dry chow mein noodles. Form into small birds nest shapes and place on parchment paper to cool. Once these are cool, top with jelly beans for eggs! I placed one of these in the side compartment of the lunch, surrounded by more walnuts, so that my kids could finish off this lunch in a sweet way!

How to Make a Bird Themed School Lunch featuring California Walnuts

Now it's time to get to the main dish. Is it kind of weird to stuff a bird shaped sandwich with walnut chicken salad? Possibly. Does that make it any less tasty? Absolutely not. This walnut chicken salad recipe is one of the best sandwich fillings you will find anywhere!

Walnut Chicken Salad Bird Sandwich
Ingredients:
5 cups cooked chicken breast cut in chunks
1 cup toasted and chopped California Walnuts
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp orange juice concentrate
2 Tbsp vinegar
1 1/2 cups halved green grapes
1 cup sliced celery
1 (13.5 oz can) pineapple tidbits
1 (11.5 oz can) mandarin oranges
1 cup mayonnaise

Directions:
1. Combine chicken, olive oil, orange juice concentrate, and vinegar. Let stand while preparing remaining ingredients. Mix well and refrigerate until chilled before serving.

2. Spoon walnut chicken salad onto slice of bread. Cut two circles out of other slice of bread. Place on top of walnut chicken salad.

3. Cut two circles of white cheese for eyes and two triangles of cheddar cheese for the beak.  Arrange cheese pieces and two raisins as shown to make the bird's face.

4. Cut two rectangles of cheddar cheese and set in place for legs. Cover with two walnut pieces.

How to Make a Bird Themed School Lunch featuring California Walnuts

Finish this high flying lunch with a side of your kid's favorite fruit or vegetables. I chose cherries because they are currently in season. I also chose them because they grow on trees, and seem like they could be a favorite fruit of our feathered friends.

I know your family will enjoy this school lunch as much as mine did, but don't forget to check out www.walnuts.org so you can find more simple ways to #ChooseLunch every day!

#lbdbento

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