When I lived in Australia, I was ridiculously healthy. I would eat nutritious lunches at my work desk which included raw fish sushi, fruit smoothies, green juices, or fresh salads with lots of grilled chicken and leafy greens. Fast forward a year and a half on, and I’ve started slipping back into my old ways. I’ll sit at my desk in my office in Manchester and think about the yummy fried chicken burger place across the road from work, or the cupcake shop which my office looks out on. Yes I know that may sound like the dream, but my insides are shouting at me to give them a break.
I recently came across a healthy eating ebook – put together by Furniture Work – which gives plenty of ideas and detail around the nutritious meal options you can create for those working lunches. Just because your work-life may be hectic and rushed, doesn’t mean your eating habits have to be too!
Before you turn your noses up assuming it will all be about picky salads or apple slices, I can assure you it isn’t. From hearty gluten free spaghetti bolognaises to vegan inspired stir frys, there is something to inspire everyone. It certainly gave me some ideas, which has lead me to put together some of my favourite options that I have thought up myself below!
Avocado on Toast
The most simple and filling lunch time snack, full of good fats. Often people try to avoid bread, but if you chose a gluten free seeded load, of a wholemeal version and have this as a twice a week treat, it does no harm at all! Slice up a whole avocado, and sprinkle with black pepper and lemon juice. Spread two slices of toast with coconut oil instead of butter, and layer up the avocado. Affordable, fresh and tasty.
Banana and Peanut Butter Oatmeal/ Banana Bagels
My favourite lunch time treat is to rustle up a big big bowl of banana and peanut butter oatmeal, and I don’t care what anyone says – oats can be eaten outside of breakfast time! You can opt for quinoa oats or wholegrain, and add to a large bowl topped with various milk options. To avoid too much diary (which I find plays havoc with my skin) I use almond, soya or coconut – but you could be as creative as you like with this. I then add a chopped up banana, flaxseed, almonds and peanut butter. Looooovely! Another option is to toast a bagel, and piled on the crunchy peanut butter and banana, for a sweet and crunchy option…
Sometimes just a bowl of fruit, or a plain apple, can be really dissatisfying. I make my fruit lunches a little more exiting by working up a bowl of mixed fruit, topped with scooping of Alpro yoghurt, which is so thick and creamy! They have lots of new flavours now too, if you wanted to experiment, and they are all diary free and low calorie. Winner! To make this a little more substantial and naughtier (perhaps as a Friday treat?) add a freshly baked croissant as a little side addition.
Hopefully, this post will alert you to the fact that lunch times don’t have to consist of pre-made sandwiches from Tesco, a packet of crisp and a Twix. There are so many other options you can create, which can incorporate healthy food options such as fruit and vegetables. Don’t discard carbohydrates – although it’s a good idea to control the amount of bread and pasta you consume, they do make reasonable ‘fillings’ for lunches and provide energy, but just remember to keep them in moderation.
What is your favourite lunch option to eat at your desk? Share in the comments!