2 cups raw rotini, or other large-ish pasta
1 tsp vegetable oil
3 cups mixed raw or cooked vegetables, cheese, ham, cooked chicken, salami, canned chickpeas or beans (whatever your child actually likes), diced
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup plain yogurt
2 tsp cider vinegar, or plain vinegar
1/4 tsp garlic powder
salt, to taste
Cook the pasta until just done, but not soggy. Rinse, drain thoroughly, and dump into a bowl. Add the vegetable oil and toss to coat evenly. This helps keep the pasta from sticking together.
Now add all the diced vegetables and whatever else you like. Try to keep the ingredients all about the same size as the pasta. If your young assistant can handle a knife, let her cut up the ingredients and add them to the bowl with the pasta. Toss everything together.
In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, vinegar, garlic powder and salt. Stir until smooth.
Toss the pasta with the dressing right before serving. On a hot day, use an oil and vinegar dressing (like Italian) instead, or put an ice pack into the lunch box.