Even if you work odd hours or have to take lunch into a meeting, what’s speedy, easy and quick to pull off with minimal prep and time whether you make it in the office or bring from home, or even pick up on the way to work?
1. Not your typical bottom desk drawer bottle:
You need staples, even at work. Stock your bottom drawer with essentials like olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, spice or herb blends, miso (unless it needs to be refrigerated), soy sauce, and any other favourites.
2. Weekly shopping essentials to keep at work and grab to eat in your lunchtime meeting:
- Bag ‘o salad – spinach, romaine lettuce and baby kale seem to last the best, as in they should last you all week. Other bags that you’ll find in the cooler section of the grocery store, like broccoli slaw or similar, make great solo salads or to top some green leaves.
- Dips make everything better. Grab a bag of baby carrots, shredded or spiralled zucchini and always a box of crackers.
- I came across the Summer Fresh Snack’n Go Salads and thought they are great ones to have on hand. A fibre- and protein-rich addition to your salad or as a snack, these little bowls that come with a fork in the lid are perfect for any time of day.
- Super convenient mini seaweed packages and rice paper wraps are speedy ways to wrap up rice, cucumber and smoked salmon or veggies without the bread.
3. Kettle lunches:
- Grab your scissors (give ‘em a quick wash), fill up the kettle and boil an egg for about 8 minutes. Cut up some kale into your bowl, add some avocado, hemp and chia seeds, lemon juice or vinegar and olive oil. Season and toss. Watch out, it’s so good that this will become your new go-to!
- Flash cook veggies in a mug of boiling water. In another mug, put 1/2 cup dry couscous and pour over 1/2 cup boiling water. Wait 5 minutes and it will be cooked! Toss with your veggies, add some protein like shrimp, chicken or tofu with some dressing, nuts and seeds. Voila!
- Leftover chicken and noodles with a teaspoon of miso and some seaweed in a jar makes a much healthier soup than store bought. Just add boiling water and you’re good to go!
- Reheat cooked pasta in your mug and throw in a handful of baby tomatoes (they pop after they’re heated). Drain and pour into your bowl. Drizzle with pesto and add an oil and some chopped basil.
4. Make ahead:
- Salad in a jar is fast, interesting and keeps well. Pack it with layers of colourful veggies, sprouts, leaves and protein. Add in texture, protein, fats and minerals from seeds and eat right from the jar at your desk. Use fresh dressing made from your bottom drawer bottles.
- Prep foods like rice, noodles and sliced veggies that can be heated up by putting them in your mug of boiling water and have some smoked salmon on hand to make sushi.
5. Pack the fridge/freezer:
- Frozen veggies like peas, broccoli and beans can be added to anything for extra minerals and protein, including soup, pasta, pizza or salad.
- Hard boil enough eggs for the week. Smash onto toast or bread with avocado, salt and pepper (from your bottom drawer), and even baby tomatoes.
- Staples like cheese, olives and meat that can become quick finger foods and put onto a skewer or toothpick.
- Frozen or cold smoked salmon and cooked shrimp, salmon or chicken are perfect protein additions to sushi or rice wraps.
Watch my segment on BT Toronto here.