I won’t bore you again with the details of how the planets must align perfectly in my planning and prepping if I’m going to eat lunch on a daily basis, but if you’re interested in reading more, you can find it HERE.
Here are some of the things I make ahead (and package in single servings in the fridge) if I want to eat on a regular schedule….I’d love to see your ideas for great make ahead lunches too – please share!
Make Ahead “Hot Lunches”
I love to make these meals in a batch, and then store them in single servings in the refrigerator (sometimes I throw one or two in the freezer to stock me up for weeks I don’t have time as well). Bonus when I can just reheat from the same container (read HERE for the containers I use).
- Turkey Taco Bowls;
- Black Bean, White Bean and Beef Taco Chili;
- From skinnytaste.com, Honey Balsamic Chicken and Veggies – I also add a half cup of brown rice to each serving;
- White Chicken Chili (this is delicious with some fresh baby spinach wilted in as you reheat too, if you need to up those greens – and who doesn’t?);
- Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup;
- From The Girl Who Ate Everything (I feel like she and I would get along really well), Cheater Korean Beef (or chicken, or turkey….I find this delicious with any of them!). I serve this with brown rice, and usually add some veggies while cooking. I also cut the amount of sugar in half, but don’t tell my kids that.
Mason Jar Salads
Mason jar salads are great for a quick lunch. You just grab them, shake them, and pour them on a plate. Or eat them right from the jar. I do that sometimes when I’m really rushed, or eating out and about!
- Spicy Black Bean and Quinoa Mason Jar Salads
- Chopped Chicken Cobb Salad in a Mason Jar
- Shrimp Mason Jar Salads with Lemon Vinaigrette
- Caprese Mason Jar Salads with Broiled Chicken
- Mason Jar Chicken Salad with (Not Really Caesar) Lemon Dijon Dressing
Snack Boxes and Homemade “Lunchables”
Sometimes it’s easier just to have some “snack” style lunches ready to go. No cooking or heating required! I love yumboxes for this. They come in a lot of sizes and colors, and it’s possible I have almost all of them.
- I like to fill the Tapas Size one with a combination of cut up veggies, hummus or guacamole, almonds, olives and a cheese stick and a hard boiled egg for lunch on the go.
- I also like to make my own “lunchable” style lunch with whole grain crackers, organic cheese, uncured lunch meat, sliced apples or strawberries and some cut up veggies. I use that cute little circle in the middle for my chocolate fix. It holds one square of chocolate perfectly!
- My kids get yumboxes for school lunches too! They like picking one category of food for each compartment (fruit, vegetables, protein, grains and dairy).
What’s on your lunch plate this week?