Work-From-Home might be going away for many of us, but that doesn't have to mean going back to the donut plate in the break room!
November 17, 2021
As the world opens up, more and more people are finding themselves returning to the office. After years of working from home, returning to the office is shaking up most people’s routines in every way, especially what and when we eat. Here are some quick and easy ideas for foods that will travel well, keep your nutrition up, and help you avoid that tempting plate of day-old donuts in the break room.
SALAD IN A JAR
One luxury of working from home was being able to just nip into the kitchen, make a fresh salad, and eat it back at your desk. How can you recreate this meal without having to worry about soggy lettuce or overpriced salad restaurants? Salad in a jar!
Start with a mason jar, and put the dressing of your choice at the bottom. An easy, delicious dressing is two parts olive oil, one part balsamic vinegar, half a part each lemon juice and honey, and salt and pepper to taste. Then, pour in your salad toppings. Start with the crispest toppings first, like cucumbers, onions, asparagus, or celery. On top of these, layer the ingredients that you might not want soaking in dressing, but that it won’t be the end of the world to get wet — try garbanzo beans, black beans, lentils, peas, corn, and broccoli. Third, you can add more delicate ingredients like crumbled cheese or hard-boiled eggs. Fourth, you can bulk up your meal with grains like rice or quinoa; this layer will also help seal in the liquids from the bottom of the salad. Finally, top off your jar with the greens of your choice, like baby spinach, kale, or arugula. When it’s time to enjoy your lunch, simply pour the mason jar into a bowl and voila! A fresh salad from home, ready to go! Here's a link with 21 fantastic options listed about halfway down the page.
What if you’d still like to have a healthy salad but don’t have the materials or space for a mason jar and a big bowl? Lettuce-free salads are here to save the day! By omitting lettuce and other fragile ingredients like hard-boiled eggs, you can make a big batch of salad at home and still enjoy crisp, fresh flavors even days after. Mix your choice of crisp veggies, beans, dressing, and seasoning together, and you’re good to go. One favorite salad at IBX is raw cucumber, cherry tomato, red onion, parsley and cilantro, tossed with some olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and lemon juice. If you’re feeling more ambitious, recipes like this one take roasted cauliflower with spices and vegetables, and toss everything in a delicious maple-tahini dressing. With cauliflower as a base, this salad stays crisp and fresh for days and can be brought to work ready to eat.
SNACKS FOR LUNCH
If you’re happier snacking throughout the day, don’t despair — a lunchbox full of healthy snacks is an easy way to stay on track without starving yourself. Make sure you have fresh fruit that travels well, like apples, oranges, or bananas. Add a small bag of raw or roasted nuts, a clean-eating-friendly bar like the RxBar and a clean protein shake like this one from OWYN, and you have your nutrients covered with enough fiber, protein, and healthy fats to keep you feeling full until dinner. (NOTE: IBX is not associated in any way with RxBar or OWYN, but these are brands that IBX coaches have used and enjoyed)