Tips for Packing Your Lunch

Hope everyone had an excellent weekend!  Dave and I just got back last night from a super quick trip with his parents to Florida to check out some wedding venues.

plane takeoff

We woke up bright and early on Sunday morning and met Dave’s parents, along with the co-pilot at the DuPage Airport.

plane

Dave’s dad flew us in his plane and it was my first experience in a personal jet like this.  I have to say I was a bit nervous at first, but he did a fantastic job!

sky

We were able to watch the sunrise on the way there, and the sunset on the way home.  Very pretty!

hotel view

Floridas’ beaches are absolutely gorgeous!  We found a couple hotels/resorts we are interested in having our wedding but I’m keeping my lips sealed until we actually decide on THE place. 😉

Tips for Packing Your Lunch

Over the last several years, I have packed my breakfast, lunch and snacks nearly every single workday and I’ve come up with a few strategies for packing foods so they stay fresh and intact by the time you are ready to eat them.  Here are some tricks I’ve learned along the way:

1. Invest in a decent sized lunch box, ice packs, and reusable glass or plastic travel containers. (i.e. Gladware, Tupperware, etc.)

lunch tools

(Don’t mind my hideous lunch box.  I wore my old one out and bought this one because of it’s separate compartments.  And the other fabric options were way worse, trust me.)

Although my work has refrigerators on each floor, they are the small ones that you would use in your college dorm room and are supposed to store food for, ohh about 80 people.  Umm, I’d rather just keep my food at my desk than try to jam it in a mini-fridge, thank you very much!

2.  Pack food the night before.

As soon as I walk in the door from work, I unpack my lunchbox, put away my dirty dishes and generally start packing food for the following day.  Or sometimes, I’ll also pack while I’m cooking dinner.  Personally, once I sit down and relax in front of the TV after dinner, there is no way I will motivate myself to pack squat.  Same goes for the morning – I am way too tired and it wastes too much time to pack anything in the morning so a surefire way to make sure it gets done is to do it immediately when I get home.

3.  Make friends with leftovers.

I know some people are anti-leftovers, but for me when preparing lunches to bring to work, they are my best friend.  I generally try to cook more food for dinner than I plan on eating that night, and then while I am cleaning up dinner, I typically pack individual servings for the next couple of days.  That way I can grab it out of the fridge and warm it up for lunch or dinner fast, if necessary.

4.  Pack enough food.

Have you ever been at work, stuck in traffic, running errands, etc. and hunger strikes hard?  It’s at those times, you realize the vending machines and fast food restaurants can actually talk and are calling your name to come eat crappy, unhealthy food.  But if you’re prepared, your packed, healthy snacks have a much better chance at winning against that cheeseburger or snickers bar.

I always pack my breakfast, lunch and two snacks to eat throughout the day.  While I generally eat everything I bring, there are some days that I just don’t have as big of an appetite or are extremely busy, so I simply take them home with me and use for the next day.

5.  Pack almost anything you want.

No one wants a soggy sandwich or fruit turned brown so here are a few tips to keep food fresh:

Wraps & Sandwiches

In order to keep your wrap (or sandwich) from getting soggy, hold off on putting whatever condiment until you are ready to eat.

blackened chicken and guac wrap

Or spread your condiment over turkey slices (or whatever meat you choose) and wrap to enclose it all inside the turkey instead of letting it touch the wrap itself.  Similarly for sandwiches, spread between slices of turkey so it doesn’t touch the bread.

 turkey and hummus wrap

Also, wrap your wrap in aluminum foil.  Mine always get soggy in a ziplock bag.

IMG_0604

Salads & Salad Dressing

Pour your salad dressing in the bottom of the container, then add a layer of whatever vegetable or ingredient will not get soggy.  (i.e. cucumbers, celery, chicken, etc.)

salad

Apples & Avocados

You can still pre-cut these two items the night before, but pour some lemon juice all over to keep from browning.  For best results, keep in an airtight, sealed ziploc bag or container.

apples

Bananas

I frequently eat bananas with my yogurt, so I layer them on the bottom first and then add yogurt or other toppings to keep from browning.

bananas

This is about all I can think of right now, but do you have any suggestions or tips for packing your lunch? Please share, I would love to hear new ideas!

Advertisements

Tagged: ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: