School is in full swing again and the ease of summer days are quickly a daydream of the past. Let’s all let out a collective groan for the monotonous meal that is the brown bagged lunch. *groooooaaaaaaaan* I get it. Packed lunches get old big time and if you’ve got a hectic morning it can be the last thing you want to do to pull out the old tupperware and search around in the fridge for something somewhat edible. On the go lunches don’t need to be sad and boring, but easy to pull together and delicious.
I highly recommend investing in some glassware or mason jars to take your lunch in. Glassware is safe to heat and will last longer and plastics run the risk of leaching chemicals into your food, yuck. I also purchased this bamboo cutlery set over a year ago and I loooooove it. No more plastic forks or carting around the house silverware that inevitably gets lost at the bottom of my backpack. A reusable cloth napkin is also a nice touch in a cute lunch tote.
FOUR ON THE GO OPTIONS
There’s just something so thrilling after you’ve been gluten free for awhile about being able to eat food with your hands. The gluten free option is always just throw the filling in a bowl (salad bowl, burrito bowl, I know you know what I mean). A lettuce wrap is by no means a solid replacement of a good hunk of bread but it does give you back that experience of munchin on a handheld lunch. Against All Grain has a great tutorial for using parchment paper to wrap them up these fragile babies.
Some of my favorite combos:
turkey + salami + cheese + sauerkraut + italian seasoning + olive oil + salt + pepper
hardboiled egg + carrots + purple cabbage + cucumbers + cilantro + hummus
diced chicken + avocado mayo + sea salt + pepper + garlic powder + green onions + dijon mustard + lemon juice
Salads can get boring, reaaaaaal quick. To keep them interesting I use one simple concept - LAYERS. Each bite should be something different and interesting, a little crunch here, a cooked veggie here, and a burst of sweet to top it all off. To keep my on-the-go salads interesting I like to follow a simple formula so instead of looking longingly at lunches around me I’m savoring every dang bite.
GREEN – arugula, kale, spinach, chard, collard, cilantro, basil, mint
ROASTED – carrots, sweet potatoes, turnips, parsnips, butternut squash, broccoli
CRUNCHY – cucumbers, red onions, celery, radishes, almonds, walnuts
FRUITY – blueberries, cherries, apples, strawberries, oranges, pears
DENSE – prosciutto, shredded chicken, carnitas, shrimp, salmon, hard boiled egg
TANGY – balsamic, olive oil + lemon, pesto, cilantro + lime
Confession time - sometimes I’m lazy and don’t feel like putting a cohesive meal together. I truly love a smorgasbord of flavors and as long as I’m eating foods that are going to nourish me and give me energy for the rest of the afternoon, I’m a-okay with a snacky lunch on the go.
Some of my favorites:
rolled up deli meat
nuts (walnuts and macadamia are my fav)
gluten free crackers
Why reinvent the wheel, amiright? If you’ve got a busy week just double your dinner and save a portion to bring to lunch in a mason jar the next day. You can always dress up sad leftovers with an interesting sauce or pesto, top it with a new spice or fresh herbs, or wrap it in a lettuce wrap or tortilla and use it as a filling. Get creative, you might just find your new favorite combo.
What lunches are your go-to’s when you’ve got a busy week?