Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Healthy Jar Lunch On the Go

Picture it.  You had a fabulous weekend and now it's Sunday.  Ahead of you awaits a ridiculously busy week of work (or school) and the LAST thing you want to stress over is what to pack for lunch.  You want healthy, you want tasty and you want it quick!  We've all been here before.  For many of us, it's a recurring theme.  So how about this?  Take any jar that once housed your favorite marmalade, marinated artichokes or any other goodie and instead of throwing it out, save it!  This will become your new, super fashionable lunch container at work.  Trendy, check.  Environmentally conscious, check.

All you have to do now is make a big tub of your favorite type of pasta according to the package instructions and toss it in extra virgin olive oil, dried basil, fine sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste and store in a sealed container in the fridge.  When you're at the grocery store, pick up some very basic items: grape tomatoes, pickles, hearts of palm, olives, sliced almonds and feta cheese.  Minus the tomatoes, these are all items that will take a relatively long time to spoil in your fridge so you can use them in the upcoming weeks.

Now just layer each ingredient in whatever order you think looks prettiest :)
I started with pasta, then tomatoes, then hearts of palm, then pickles, then olives, then almonds and then feta cheese.  Then I gave it a little splash of extra virgin olive oil and just a touch of balsamic with some salt and pepper to finish.  Takes literally less than 3 minutes to put together.  Come Monday morning, I had a healthy and beautiful lunch all ready to eat.  As a bonus, you will be the envy of all of your co-workers :)  Low maintenance, check.  Healthy, check.  Delish, check.    

You can totally play around with the ingredients of course.  I like to use kidney and garbanzo beans in the mix and add fresh herbs like basil, dill and cilantro as well as nuts or seeds.  Any veggie is fair game so have fun with this super EASY, DELICIOUS, HEALTHY and TRENDY lunch idea.  And now that you have some basic ingredients in your fridge, along with that big tub of pasta, you're golden for the rest of the work week :)  More posts to follow on some new and exciting lunch combination ideas!

PS-if you're feeling super motivated on Sunday, you can even pre-pack all of your Healthy Jar Lunches for the week and keep them on hand in the fridge- all you need are 5 jars so start saving now! 

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