Choosing what to have for lunch has to be one of the most difficult decisions of the working day. When you’re at home you have access to all those lovely ingredients in the fridge, so knocking up a quick avocado and poached egg toasted sandwich is easy. But at work, it’s a different story.
The lack of proper cooking facilities and limited time means many of us to take the easy way out and eat unhealthily processed or fast food. But it doesn’t have to be that way, with a little preparation you can transform your working lunch from the boring and mundane to the healthy and delicious.
In this article, we are going to show you how to plan and prepare your lunch around other meals so that you have a different delicious, healthy lunch to eat each day. Put these tips to work and you’ll be able to put down that disappointing sandwich from the supermarket deli counter and enjoy delicious healthy food prepared by you instead.
Use these 5 tips and tricks to ensure you have a delicious lunch every single day:
1. Keep it simple
The key to eating healthy is to use a few simple ingredients and combine them with staple foods to create a delicious meal. So don’t over complicate things, your lunch break is not the time to experiment with spices or knock up grilled lobster in white sauce. Stick to foods which don’t require much cooking and can be kept for a few days in the fridge.
2. Keep it healthy
To maintain a healthy balanced diet your lunch should contain at least three of the following five food groups: Protein, (meat or substitute), vegetables, grains, dairy/calcium-rich foods and fruit.
This might sound complicated but in practice, it’s easy to do. For example, take a piece of grilled chicken from last night’s dinner, combine it with avocado, coriander and tomato salad. Follow this with yoghurt combined with nuts and berries and you’ll have a delicious lunch which combines four of the five food groups.
3. Think about your lunch when preparing dinner
When preparing your evening meal, think about how you can use some of the ingredients for your lunch later in the week. This is the easiest part of the day to prepare your meals because you already have the ingredients and utensils out and ready. You’ll also save time washing up.
For example, let’s say you’re having poached salmon for dinner. Make an extra portion and put it aside in the fridge. It should last for 3 days. When you’re ready, mix the salmon with a salad of lettuce and asparagus, add a little dressing and you have a delicious, easy, simple lunch prepared in minutes.
4. Get prepared with the right containers
If you’re going to prepare food in advance you will need lots of containers to keep leftovers in. Choose clear plastic containers with sealed lids which will help keep the food fresh. Also, keep a note of what you have made and when you made it. You can write this on the containers themselves or a wall planner.
5. Keep a healthy snack close to your desk
Even if you have a delicious healthy lunch each day, there will still be days when you need a snack. When the inevitable happens, try to resist the temptation to eat sugary snacks. While there is nothing wrong with these in moderation, eating them every day will undo all of your good work.
It is far healthier to keep a piece of fresh fruit or a grain bar close to your desk to satisfy those snacking urges. You can buy grain bars in multi-packs to save money but don’t bring the whole packet to work, you may be tempted to eat the whole lot. Same goes with fruit, just bring with you what you need to eat that day.
As you can see, with a little planning, you can create a healthy lunch each day using leftovers from the night before. Thinking ahead and preparing extra servings while cooking your dinner, will cut preparation time to a minimum, allowing you to create a delicious, healthy meal in as little as a few minutes.