Nourishing Portable Food
I’m actually so thankful for this carnival, as it comes at a great time for me. I’m really struggling with what to send with my husband for lunch lately.
I think the reason I struggle with making lunches is because it is not consistent. One week he may only need one lunch, the next he might be home for 3 days, and need a lunch 2 days, another week he may be gone all week and be unsure of exactly where he will be each day for lunch (so leftovers may or may not work).
The unknown factors make it a source of frustration for me, and I am sad to say that I have not given it my all to find a solution that works for my husband and I. Many times I have had to toss together a lunch spur of the moment (not always the best, as you can imagine), many days he has had to eat out, and occasionally he has even just skipped lunch and had a few snacks here and there. Not ideal at all.
Since I desire to learn to serve my husband better in this area, it has been a good activity for me to think through the options I have and start to be more purposeful in this area. I haven’t had the time these past two weeks to do any experimenting, but I thought I would at least give it some thought and suggest some of the things that we enjoy taking with us for lunches on the go.
Our favorite sandwich variations– rolled in tortillas, in pita pockets. on buns or biscuits or bagels, and of course, just plain old bread. My husband loves it when we have our favorite nitrate-free sandwich meat, but when we don’t, it’s any combination of lettuce, sprouts, pickles, cucumber or tomato slices, and definitely always cheese.
Salsa, guac and tortilla chips– not necessarily completely filling, in and of itself, but combined with something else, it’s a nice, fresh lunch.
Rice and bean salad– This tangy salad is quite filling, and won’t go bad easily in a lunch bag. Other salads that would be nice are Greek salad, this Black Bean and Avocado salad, or Tabbouli.
Homemade meatballs (these just feel like a very portable and easy finger food, but they’re yummy and filling)
Samosas (these are tasty little pastry-like pockets that come from Indian cuisine, filled with a rice, veggie and meat filling, and then baked. I love using the Nourishing Traditions recipe and making a huge batch for the freezer!)
Meal salads (usually a garden salad, topped with either diced or sliced meat or chicken, canned salmon, chunks of cheese, or hard boiled eggs, with a small jar of dressing on the side)
Soup or stew in a thermos (we haven’t always had a nice thermos, but now that we do, this will be a great option in the winter, and so easy to just make a larger dinner the night before)
Crackers, with meat and cheese slices (sometimes I buy nice nitrate-free deli sausages, and these are really nice in little cracker “sandwiches”)
Hummus (with veggie sticks, with pita, with organic tortilla chips)- here’s my favorite recipe:
Homemade Hummus Recipe
- 28 oz. can chickpeas or equivalent amount of your own cooked chickpeas
- 7-8 cloves garlic
- 2 1/2 lemons juiced
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 tsp tahini sesame seed paste- available in most ethnic food aisle and health food stores
- Put 1 28 oz. can of chickpeas in a pot and boil until darker, then let cool (since I cook all my own beans, I just make the approximate amount, and overcook them slightly).
- Food process or blend the chickpeas, garlic, lemon juice, salt and tahini until smooth. If needed, add small amounts of water to help blend, until you reach a consistency that you like.
This recipe freezes really well, too!
For many more fantastic healthy and portable food ideas, make sure you check out the Nourishing Portable Food Carnival, over at The Nourishing Gourmet!
Great ideas and great post! As I’m reading this, I’m wishing that I had one of those samosa’s for breakfast . . . I’m going to have to go check out the recipe in NT! 🙂
Looks like we have a lot of the same ideas (great minds! 🙂 Another suggestion I have for you, since his schedule is a bit awry, is, if you ever make casseroles (I don’t very often, I doubt you do either, but if you do!) to cut out a nice, large square and freeze it up right away, before you put the remainder of the leftovers away in the fridge. Do this every once in a while with soups, stews, casseroles, etc. and pretty soon you’ll have four or five quick complete meals that you can pull out of the freezer for those lunches you aren’t prepared for! Or even one of your own if you’re feeling tired and uninspired that day! 🙂
Thanks for being part of the carnival, Stephanie. 🙂 Your post is making me really hungry, LOL. I am glad to know that you like NT’s Samosa recipe because I have never tried it before. I will have to give it a go. I never thought about sending meat balls, but it’s a wonderful idea. I second the sending soups/stews. My husband loves that option!
Great post! Thanks for sharing!
Just what I need! My daily lunch routine of a pb&j sadwhich, V8 and an apple is already getting old, and I am only two weeks into the school year!
My husband’s lunch needs are sporadic too. Makes a challenge! I’m going to have to open up my NT book to check out those samosas! They sound great!
You sound just like me! I’m needing ideas for lunches, but at the same time I don’t always know if my hubby needs a lunch or not- or even if he’ll be home for dinner! Talk about difficult to plan!
But I’m excited about making burritos and pocket type sandwiches to keep in the freezer. Soups are great, too, but in the summer here in TX I don’t even think about it! Maybe in a month or two it’ll be cool enough-maybe. 🙂
BTW, I’m new to your blog and have really been enjoying reading all your old posts. I desire to live more naturally, but the cost sometimes gets in the way. I’ve been trying to keep things simple to keep costs down. Thank you for all the great info on healthy eating and living!
I so needed some great lunch ideas for poor hubby. He’s getting tired of eating a turkey sandwich every day. I never know when he won’t be around a microwave, so I don’t know when to send leftovers. He’s been buying off the dollar menu a lot lately. I hate that he spends money on lunch every day. Now I have some good ideas of different things to make for him. I especially love the meatballs idea. Thanks so much for sharing!
Mmmm, this is making me hungry! =) I also love making hummus for snacks and you might try adding some ground cumin. I love serving it with soft warmed pitas drizzled w/ evoo and baked for about 5 min in the oven. Yummy!
Id love to see ur recipes done in video or realtime so we can follow too with some confidence
Hi, I just stumbled across your blog. I noticed that you make samosa!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE them, but I have no idea how to make them. Can you send me a recipe? Also do you make the yougurt chaat with the red sauce and the chopped onions to go on top also?
I love homemade hummus- will have to try overcooking the chickpeas. I don’t soak and cook my own chickpeas because they seem to be the only dried bean/legume that I can’t get soft enough (without a pressure cooker) to make a nice creamy hummus.
A handy tip is to make your own tahini by grinding sesame seeds in blender/food processor with a little bit of toasted sesame oil (or healthy oil of your choice). Simple and fresher- I keep sesame seeds in the freezer but now I don’t have to also have tahini on hand.
Oh! and also a tasty addition to hummus is roasted red peppers. Just toss a few into the processor and process until blended. Makes a lovely rosy coloured hummus to serve with veggies.
love your site! being a raw vegan i make hummus every day. i use the can garbanzo beans but sometimes use the lentils that are already cooked, in produce section of walmart. we do not have a lot of stores in brooksville. i do add EVOO to mine & sometimes sun dried tomatoes. also nutritional yeast & maca root powder. also flax & chia seeds. i juice every day & love boba i am very interested in your dental health articles & so much more. thanks so much for sharing. i’m glad that i found you as you are inspiring.