Easy back-to-school lunches kids can make themselves – Ottawa

We’re only two weeks into the school year, but there are probably kids out there already tired of the meals popping up in their lunchboxes.

Kent Van Dyk is here to help.

Van Dyk is the culinary arts teacher at Longfields-Davidson Heights Secondary School, and he’s on a mission: to teach children it’s both healthy and fun to prepare their own meals.

This week on All in a Day‘s D is for Dinner, Van Dyk shares a few lunchroom-friendly recipes, including a cranberry turkey wrap with sage mayonnaise and a couscous and vegetable salad.

Couscous and Vegetable Salad


  • ½ cup and 1 tsp. olive oil.
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice.
  • zest of half a lemon.
  • 1 cup water (or stock).
  • ½ tsp. salt.
  • ⅔ cup regular or whole wheat couscous.
  • 1½-2 cups mixed vegetables.
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin (optional).
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional if you like heat).
  • ½ tsp. curry powder (optional).


  1. For the vinaigrette, whisk together the ½ cup of olive oil, the lemon juice and the zest in a bowl. Season with salt to taste and set aside.
  2. Put the water, the teaspoon of olive oil and salt (plus whatever additional seasonings you want to add) in a small pot and bring to a boil.  
  3. Stir in the couscous, cover, remove from the heat and let stand for five minutes.
  4. Uncover the couscous and fluff with a fork.  
  5. Add in whatever vegetables you like, raw or cooked (boiled, steamed, roasted, grilled).
  6. Serve warm, room temperature or cold. You may garnish the salad with grated or crumbled cheese, leftover roast chicken, or whatever else you’d like to add.

Cranberry Turkey Wrap


  • 1 boneless, skinless turkey breast (you’ll need roughly 4 oz. of sliced turkey per wrap).*
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder.
  • 1 tsp. paprika.
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano.
  • 1 tsp. dried basil.
  • 2 tsp. Kosher salt.
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper.
  • 2 tsp. canola oil.
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries.
  • ½ -¾ cup sugar (more or less depending on how sweet you like your sauce).
  • zest and juice of 1 navel orange.
  • 1½ cups prepared mayonnaise.
  • 2-3 tsp. ground sage.
  • 4 whole wheat tortillas or 8 slices multigrain bread.
  • 4 slices monterey jack cheese.
  • 4 large leaves of red leaf lettuce.
  • 2 yellow zucchinis (optional).

*You can also use leftover turkey, leftover roast chicken, or oven-roasted turkey breast from the deli section of your local grocery store.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Combine the garlic…

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