A Free-from-Sugar-and-Stress Lunch
We want a filling meal, and we want it fast. Because by lunch time, we are all starving and ready to refuel whether we are at work or at home. We are prepared to spend the majority of our time cooking around dinner time, because it’s more convenient, but we don’t always have a lot of time to spend making lunch.
Never forget the power of heating up leftovers!
Baked Sweet Potato with Sour Cream & grated Cheese
A simple and easy to make lunch. You can also make it in the microwave in approximately 5 minutes, just prick the skin of the sweet potato. Contrary to popular belief, sweet potatoes are low in sugar and are very nutritious.
- 1 Sweet Potato
- 2 Table spoons Sour Cream (or creme fraiche, or simply butter)
- 1 Table spoon fresh chopped Chives
- Grated Cheddar (or cheese of choice)
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Wrap the sweet potato in foil and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Chop the chives, and mix them in with the sour cream, then grate your cheese of choice.
When the sweet potato is done, simply cut it open, add the sour cream/chive topping and sprinkle the desired amount of cheese on top.
Lemon, Garlic & Chilli Prawns on a bed of Spaghetti
Zesty, fresh and healthy with a little kick. This dish, packed with vitamin C and omega 3, is exactly what you need to brighten your day. It doesn’t take long either!
- 250g of King Prawns, peeled and de-veined
- 2 tablespoons Butter
- 3 – 4 cloves of Garlic
- 1 Lemon
- 1 tablespoon dried Chilli Flakes
- 1/2 glass White Wine
- Half a pack of Spaghetti
- Salt & Black Pepper
- Parmesan, grated
Boil pasta with the salt until it softens (around 5 mins) then drain. Melt butter in a pan then add prawns with crushed garlic and chilli. Add the wine after 3 minutes and reduce, then squeeze in the lemon. Grate in half of the zest to taste and season with salt and black pepper.
Mix in the spaghetti and serve, grating the Parmesan over lightly.
Before you scroll past and write it off as not time-efficient, give it a chance. I was shocked at how quick I was able to whip this up and it is definitely a re-heatable lunchbox meal.
Add a salad on the side to inject more nutritional value to the meal.
- 1 cup Macaroni Pasta
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- 1 tablespoon Flour
- 1 cup grated Cheese
- 1 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
Boil pasta with the salt until it softens (around 5 mins) then drain. Melt butter in a saucepan then whisk in the flour until it becomes a paste, then slowly whisk in the milk. Bring to a boil and simmer until the sauce thickens. Add half the cheese and stir in until melted. Add the pasta and stir in.
If you wish, at this stage you can bake the pasta for 15 minutes sprinkling the remaining cheese on top, or you can enjoy it straight away with a side salad,
Toasted Rye Bread with Goats Cheese & Avocado
Rye bread tastes better warm and smothered in butter so I don’t suggest doing a pre-made lunch with Rye. A guilt-free way to enjoy a tasty lunch.
- Rye Bread
- Goats Cheese
- Avocado, sliced
Slice the Rye bread and toast, smother with butter, spread the goats cheese across and add sliced avocado. Simple as that! If you want to be super fancy, sprinkle sea salt and black pepper over.
Pitta with Brie & Avocado
Quick, easy, tasty!
- Wholemeal Pitta Bread
I think you know… but I’ll tell you anyway! Cut pitta bread in half across the middle, pop both halves in the toaster. Slice your avocado and brie. When your pittas come out of the toaster, they are like pockets of lava. Smother in butter inside (and out if you wish), add sliced brie and then sliced avocado. Tasty!
It wouldn’t be lunch time without a snack to get you through the mid-morning blues. And the post lunch time blues. And the “I’m just always hungry” blues…
Here are some ideas that definitely worked for me!
Jacob’s Flatbreads & Smashed Avocado
These flatbreads are a great snack to have with any dips; salsa, hummus or guacamole.
My makeshift “guacamole” was just a whole avocado mashed with salt, pepper, a sprinkling of dried chilli flakes and a squeeze of lime juice.
Veg & Hummus (check for sugar free)
An easy yet satisfying snack. You can slice up any of your favourite vegetables; carrots, cucumbers, peppers or celery. Just make sure you read your labels as not all hummus is sugar free.
Chika’s Plantain Chips with Home-made Salsa
I give these plantain crisps the stamp of approval! Naturally sweet, plantain is full of vitamins, minerals and fiber. This salsa, though, is fantastic as a replacement for ketchup, relish and other condiments I would usually use.
- 1 clove Garlic
- 1 quarter Onion
- 4 large Tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon Chilli flakes
- Pinch Salt
- Pinch black Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Lemon juice
Finely chop all ingredients, mash all ingredients together with a fork and stir, finish by stirring in a light squeeze of lemon juice. Keep refrigerated.
Ape Crispy Coconut Curls
I warn you that these tasty little packets are over priced and under-filled. Enjoy as a one off snack for when you don’t need something to hit the “spot” but you want to tickle your tastebuds.
Nakd Bars & Munchy Seeds
Now, having tried all of these I have to advise you to be open minded and think more of the nutritional content. I feel like raisin is a key ingredient in the Cocoa and Apple flavoured Nakd bars – not one of my favourites but it wasn’t too bad considering it’s free from pretty much everything!
The munchy seeds were what you’d expect, I felt a bit like a bird nibbling on them and feel I would prefer to sprinkle on a salad or even a yoghurt!
Having nuts to hand was a snacking life saver – my favourites are pistachios particularly because you have to work for it, making it a great “boredom snack”.
I also mix cashews or almonds in some of my meals like pastas or stir fries.
Don’t underestimate the power of fruit as a snack. When there’s been an endless supply of cakes in the office, having an apple, pear or banana has been enough to just keep me from caving. Grapes are particularly good because of how easy (and tasty) they are!
I hope you enjoyed trying some of these ideas. Don’t forget, a great way to enjoy a quick lunch is by heating over some of these left over dinners!