What do you eat for lunch? It's pretty safe to say that if you are an American, and you work the 8-5 you likely eat out most meals for convenience or pack up leftovers from last night's dinner. The leftover dinner I can certainly get behind, but the eating out I cannot. I can say that, because that used to be me. I used to eat out most lunch breaks because I thought planning ahead might take too much time. Turns out it doesn't...and I was burning a whole in my wallet and clogging my arteries for no good reason.
A big mac is not a meal. This, my friends, is a meal! Since I started making up my lunches ahead of time (I usually mix up a big batch of whatever I'll be having on Sundays and eat on it all week or do another lunch making day mid-week to get me to Friday) I have experienced zero to few afternoon headaches, completely done away with mid-afternoon drowsiness, and no longer have a need to snack since my lunch does such a good job of meeting my nutritional needs.
This recipe is one example of many that can be made in advance and shoveled into a to-go container for lunch time. (See below for other recommendations if you're looking to revamp your lunch life!) I got the recipe from Angela at Oh She Glows and altered it here and there to suit my tastes. Here's what tasted best for me...
Quinoa and Black Bean Veggie Salad (a.k.a. "OMG this tastes as good as Qdoba or Chipotle but with 1/3 the fat and calories")
Will feed one person 4-5 days and a couple for 1/2 the week.
1 cup uncooked quinoa (red or white, I used white)
14 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1/2 of a large cucumber, diced
2 green onions,chopped
1 cup corn (fresh or frozen)
1 (2, or 3, yum!!) avocado, diced
Juice of 2 small limes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp ground cumin
salt and pepper to taste
1. Cook 1 cup quinoa according to package directions.
2. While quinoa is cooking, prepare the chopped vegetables and whisk together the dressing.
3. Allow quinoa to cool after cooking for about 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Add the beans and vegetables and toss well.
4. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss well with salt and pepper to taste.Chill to serve. Keep in sealed container.
Question of the Day:
What do you usually do for lunch?
Other lunch ideas:
Chicken Salad (sandwich or wrap)
Grilled Chicken TexMex wrap
*I usually bring along a piece of fruit and a little snack too (like a small baggie of chips and a square or two of dark chocolate to cure my sweet tooth.)