Brown-bag lunch

School is starting again: Time to fill those lunch bags! You don’t want your kid to be the only one in the cafeteria with nothing good to trade. I asked Evan Elsberry, chef of the kid-friendly restaurant Evan’s Kitchen (formerly The Family Room, 855 57th Street, (916) 452-3896), who packs lunches for his 6-year-old, for some school-lunch tips:

1. “A top thing is fresh fruit. Grapes stay cold longer than most other fruit.”

2. “Sandwiches, of course. My daughter is a straight-up turkey-and-cheddar-cheese girl—she’s not into lettuce yet, but I’m trying. There’s also traditional bologna, but you’ve got to read the package. A lot of those lunch meats have terrible things in them.”

3. “My daughter likes V8 Splash—it’s more fruity than the vegetable juice. If you’re looking for juices, the Welch’s fruit juices are 100-percent natural.”

4. “She likes cold macaroni and cheese—homemade, of course. We have one of those insulated lunch bags to keep things hot or cold. They’re lightweight, they work great, and they give you a lot more versatility.”