Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
Jul 18, 2010 09:20 AM

what was your favorite type of school lunches?

i like the strange cheeseburger things, and they baked grilled cheeses!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Salisbury steak with mashed potatoes all drenched in brown gravy, served with a side of corn, a small carton of milk, and a small cup of vanilla ice cream. Came in one those trays that had partitions dividing each food into its own little compartments.

    I always ended up moving my mashed potatoes on top of the salisbury steak and then trading my milk for someone else's mashed potatoes. Good eating.

    1. There is a (very small) soft spot in my heart for the lunch room pizza I ate in school (5-10 years ago). The perforated, soggy, rectangular bready goodness.

      1 Reply
      1. re: raleighboy

        Oh yes, I loved the rectangular pizza!

      2. The canned green beans and the canned boiled potatoes. They were my faves back in the day but for some reason, I can't even begin to think about eating them today.

        2 Replies
        1. re: chicaraleigh

          y'know...your tastes DO change...I used to LOVE Taylor Pork Roll sandwiches with cheddar cheese on a hard roll (grew up in 'Jersey)...made one a few years ago and was like ..."WHY did I love these so much?? mehhh, not so good!"

          1. re: Val

            Taylor Pork Roll, now that I can't get it, I want it. What is it about human nature that makes this true?

        2. Yea when I was a kid those weird cheese burgers wrapped in those foil like bags. amazing how tasted improve with age!

          1 Reply
          1. re: pikiliz

            we used to called them sweaty burgers and loved them! Also the sloppy joes and the chicken patties.

          2. I'm reporting from a much earlier age than most of us, I think; our milk dispenser in our Illinois school offered a heavily subsidized price, but even at that 2¢ for an 8-oz. carton sounds incredible today.

            Anyway, this was deep in the Midwest in the '50s, and burgers and pizza weren't even on the radar. We had big bowls of peanut butter on the table at one school - apparently peanut allergy hadn't been invented yet (yeah, like lung cancer!) - and most of the entrées were casserole-type dishes that could be made in large pans. My favorite dish of all was a melange of macaroni, tomatoes, hamburger, kidney beans and cheese called "Marietta", though I liked the spaghetti & meatballs, the Salisbury steak, and even the Hot Roast Beef Sandwich, with the canned roast beef and gravy over a scoop of mashed potatoes atop a slice of balloon bread. But I lived for the Marietta...

            2 Replies
            1. re: Will Owen

              I not quite as old. I didn't experience school lunches until 1966, only because we went home for lunch in elementary school (long before working mothers were common).

              Milk was 5 cents ala a carte, complete type A luch, Hot main, veg, starch, dessert and milk was 35 cents. All made from scratch each day in school.

              My favorite was the spaghetti with meat sauce. A hearty Bolognese made by the kitchen ladies who had immigrated from Italy.

              The highlight of lunch were the homemade soups available for 5 cents a cup. On Fridays, I would spend 25 cents and get 5 cups of a Rhode Island Style (Natural broth) Clam Chowder that was loaded with fresh shucked clams.

              And of course...NO meat was served on Friday, always Fish. Never Pizza on Friday, because local habit was to start the sauce using bacon drippings which was much cheaper than oil.

              1. re: bagelman01

                We didn't have priced items, except for the soda and milk machines and the frozen desserts, which were sold from a free-standing freezer. The cafeteria meal was a flat 25¢, going up to 30¢ sometime during High School.

                Yes, we always had some form of fish on Fridays, usually a salmon loaf or something equally enticing, until they went and invented fish sticks. Lord, you'd have thought they did that just to make our cafeteria staff happy!