What’s in Your Lunchbox? My Top 10 Favorite Packables for a Happy Belly and Heart.

1653722_449776738459427_961101199_nBrown bagging your lunch might seem old school, but it’s an awesome thing to get into the habit of doing. It will save on money and time, and it will benefit your radiate, beautiful, sparkly health.

When I was little, my dad packed my lunch for me every single day before school. He also drew pictures and wrote my name on the brown bag in vibrant Crayola colors. There was a new picture and design every day.

There was never confusion about which lunch was mine at lunch time, that’s for certain.

You can decide how you want to carry your lunch, and I’ll give you ideas about what to put in it, deal?

Here are my top 10, go-to items to make any lunch just as satisfying and yummy as giving your order to someone (and way healthier, to boot).

1_spiced-avocado1. Avocado With Spice Mix

This takes hardly any effort at all and it’s one of the tastiest things, maybe ever.

Here’s how to do it:

Place the following spices in a small container that has a lid:

2 teaspoons garlic granules (8g)

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon coriander powder (2g)

1/2 teaspoon white pepper powder (2g)

1/2 teaspoon salt (4g)

1 teaspoon onion powder (4g)

  • Place the lid on the container and shake, so that all of the ingredients get combined.

  • Pack the spice container in your lunch, along with an avocado, a knife and a spoon.

  • When you’re ready to munch, cut open the avocado, sprinkle the spice mix over it and dig in.

Even people who don’t generally like avocados will nom this up.

2_granola2. Granola

You know those times during the day when you’re not starving, but you need something in your mouth, preferably sweet? Granola is the perfect thing to snack on when you need a little somin’ somin’ sweet. There are loads of good granola recipes out there and if you haven’t made your own yet, I highly recommend it. It’s super easy to make, plus it’s cheaper and better for you. PLUS, your house will smell like a small piece of heaven while it’s baking, and the smell will woft out your windows and down your street. Let’s all make granola at the same time and sweeten up the world.

Here’s a solid granola recipe for you to try.

3. Tahini Sandwich With Banana And Sunflower Seeds

It’s a new take on the classic PB&J. This is one of my faves to throw in my pack when I go hiking.

Lightly toast two pieces of sprouted bread and then spread liberal amounts of tahini on both pieces.

Sprinkle a generous amount of sunflower seeds over the tahini and then pile on the banana slices.

Close it up and you have a tahini-licious sandwich for later.

3_curry_kale_salad4. Spiced Curry Kale Salad

This is a fantastic recipe that is nutrient dense, easy to put together and great to add to any lunch on the go.

Here’s how to do it:

Make the dressing by placing all of the following ingredients into a blender:

2 tablespoons tahini (35g)

1 tablespoon lemon juice (15ml)

1/2 teaspoon curry powder (1g)

1 garlic clove, chopped

1 teaspoon peeled and grated ginger (3g)

3 dates, soaked in hot water for 10 minutes

1/8 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 cup water (59ml)

pinch of cayenne

  • Blend until the dressing is creamy and smooth and set aside for now.

  • Wash, de-stem and chop 1 bunch of kale (any variety will do, my fave is green curly for this recipe).

  • Place kale in a large bowl, pour the dressing over it and massage into the kale with your hands until the dressing has been distributed.

This will make a big batch so you can pack what you like and then nosh on the rest later.

4_chickpea_mash5. Chickpea Mash

This is a little concoction I came up with for people who are super short on time and who would rather starve  than to go through a drive-thru. You can whip this up in 10 minutes, put it on some bread as a sandwich or spread it on a kale leaf. Whatever way you do it, you can add some red bell peppers almond slices for added texture.

Here’s how to do it:

2 cups cooked garbanzo beans (430g)

1/4 cup red onion, diced (35g)

1/4 cup grated carrot (30g)

2 teaspoons yellow mustard (15g)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

5 turns fresh black pepper

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

  • Place the garbanzo beans in a medium-sized bowl and mash them with a fork. You don’t have to mash them completely. If some garbanzo beans are left whole, it’s A-okay.

  • Add the red onion, carrot, yellow mustard, lemon juice, oregano, black pepper and sea salt.

  • Stir until all of the ingredients are combined.

5_apple_and_almond_butter6.  Apple with Almond Butter

I don’t know about you, but I will never grow out of this snack. It’s easy, quick, packable, tasty and it will leave your cells doing a jig. Best to pack the apple and the almond butter separately, and then cut the apple and spread the almond butter when you’re ready to eat it. This will allow for maximum freshness and yumminess.

7. Hummus, Romaine, Sauerkraut and Avocado Wrapped in a Blanched Collard Leaf

This is a doozy – check it out.

If you lightly blanch a big collard leaf or two, it makes the perfect vessel to wrap other delicious ingredients in. It’s just as good as a tortilla, only WAY more healthy and exciting to eat. It also makes the perfect thing to add to your sack lunch.

Before you blanch the collards, trim the stem down so it’s flush with the collard leaf. After you take it out of the hot water, place it in cold water (throw some ice in your water to cool it better) to stop the cooking (like you would with pasta).

Dry the collards thoroughly and then wrap, baby, wrap!

You can blanch your collards a day in advance and keep them in the fridge for when you’re ready to use them. You can fill them with whatever you want – I usually fill them with the combination above.

As a side note, these are also crazy good when you wrap a mean veggie burger in them and top it with lots of goodies. Just think of the blanched collard as the bun.

8.  Veggie Pate in Romaine Leaves Topped with Hemp Seeds

There are lots of different veggie pates that are easy to make and super nutritious.

Carrot Cashew Pate is my all time favorite veg pate. After you make the pate, spread a generous amount  in romaine leaves and sprinkle with hemp seeds. These little wraps pack a serious punch and will have you super excited about lunch.

8_white_bean_tuna9. White Bean Tuna Salad In Avocados

This will soon be one of your go-to packable lunch items. Simple, sexy and infinitely sustainable.

Here’s how you make the White Bean Tuna:

3 cups cooked white beans (300g)

2 celery stalks, diced

1/2 cup onion, finely chopped (65g)

2 teaspoons dulse powder (4g)

1 teaspoon dried dill

1/2 teaspoon sea salt (4g)

3/4 cup vegan mayo (150g)

1 tablespoon olive oil (15ml)

  • Place the white beans in a bowl or food processor and either mash, or process until semi-smooth. If there are some chunks of white bean, that is just fine.

  • Place the beans along with the rest of the ingredients into a bowl and mix to combine.

Pack some White Bean Tuna and an avocado, and when you’re ready for lunch, slice open the avocado and scoop the White Bean Tuna into the avo. You could also make this into a sandwich, or wrap it in a blanched collard (see #6 above). Any way you do it, it’s an awesome packable.

9_frittata10.  Rosemary Vegan Frittata

Make this for dinner and then pack some for your lunch the next day. It’s really good eaten warm or cold, so you don’t even have to heat it up if you don’t have time or if you’re not around a kitchen. Easy, peasy, yum.

Heres how to do it:

1 cup chickpea flour (130g)

2 cups water (475ml)

1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped (2g)

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp. olive oil (15ml)

1/2 cup red onion, diced (65g)

1 cup mushrooms, diced (80g)

1 tsp. sea salt (6g)

1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced (70g)

1 heaping cup chard, chopped (55g)

5 turns fresh black pepper

  • Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit (175°C)

  • Put the chickpea flour and the water in a large mixing bowl and whisk until all of the lumps are gone. Add the rosemary and lemon juice, and set aside.

  • Heat the oil in a skillet and saute the onions for 2 minutes in medium heat.

  • Add the mushrooms and the sea salt and saute for 2 additional minutes.

  • Add the red peppers and cook for 1 minute.

  • Add the chard and turn off the heat.

  • Transfer the veggies to the chickpea flour/water bowl and stir until the ingredients are combined.

  • Add the black pepper and pour in a lightly oiled 9-inch round baking dish.

  • Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.

Who knew brown bagging it could be so yum? If you’re inspired to try some of these, tell us in the comments below, or tell us your favorite things to pack in your lunch.

Peace, love and yummy, clean food. Always.

Molly is a clean food guru. She helps people feel better by teaching them exactly what to eat so they can stop guessing (in a non-preachy and fun way). When she’s not in her kitchen you will find her in a yoga class, on her meditation pillow or behind her camera.

Check out her work here.


Molly PatrickMolly Patrick // Bold Vegan 

Cookbook Author
Facebook: Bold Vegan
Twitter: @boldvegan
 
 

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