What's for Lunch?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

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I have been meaning to write this post for awhile, but something else always came up.  So  here we go, a post on lunch!

More often than not, we have leftover dinner for lunch.  There are times, though, when I either don't have enough leftovers, or I don't feel like eating what I made the night before. Here are some of my favorite lunch ideas:

  • Sandwiches - don't discount good old peanut butter and jelly.  Peanut butter is rich in nutrients and very high in fiber and protein.  Many people think that it is unhealthy because of the fat content.  The truth is, peanut butter actually is high in monounsaturated fat, which actually helps keep bad cholesterol at bay, it is a good fat.  Just be careful of commercial peanut butters that have added ingredients.  The peanut butter you buy should have AT MOST 3 ingredients- peanuts, sugar, and oil.  You can also make peanut butter at home, as well as other types of nut butters, by simply putting peanuts, oil and a little sugar in your food processor and processing until smooth!  Other sandwiches that we like are tuna, grilled cheese, and egg salad.  I stay away from deli meats because, well, frankly they scare me, but sandwiches are a great option.  Oh and one more thought on sandwiches - be sure to serve them on whole grain bread!
  • Cheesy quesadillas - We love quesadillas and I make them very simply.  I cover a small tortilla with pureed squash, sweet potato, or cauliflower, and then top with cheese.  I top that with a second small tortilla and microwave for about a minute and a half, and voila...cheesy quesadillas!

  • Lunch Packets- In my large deep freezer in the garage I keep what I call "lunch packets."  These are small Foodsaver bags filled with one serving of macaroni and cheese (will post my mac and cheese recipe soon, I promise!), a homemade "pocket" (like a chicken pocket or a pizza pocket), chicken or fish nuggets, etc.  These are great because they are individual servings so I can just pop them out of the freezer, reheat them in the microwave, or in the case of the nuggets, the oven, and serve!  So convenient, and healthier than the processed freezer meals that come from the grocery store!
  • Veggies, veggies, veggies-  I always serve lunch with two servings of vegetables.  The possibilities are endless, peas, carrots, broccoli, kohlrabi, etc.  I also try to sneak pureed veggies into the main dish wherever I can.

  • Tuna Noodles-  This one is my personal favorite.  I have been making this FOREVER.  I came up with it in college.  It is so fast to make, it takes me about 5 minutes.  I just use whatever noodles I have in the pantry, and lately that  has been Wacky Mac!  Cook the noodles, I usually cook half the package, then I have a little leftover for the next day.  To the cooked noodles, add 2 cans of tuna, a tbsp. of olive oil, about a tsp. of each: lemon pepper, dill, and minced onion.   Add 1 cup of pureed cauliflower and 1 cup of peas and cook on the stove until heated through.  I top it with a little parmesan cheese, but that is totally up to you!

These are just a few of my lunch ideas.  I would love to hear your ideas too!  Until next time, happy and HEALTHY cooking!


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