Leaving the office for a casual lunch is one of the few joys of work week. However, between the ever-increasing costs of restaurant food and the time spent in traffic, the quick and relaxing weekday lunch is often neither quick nor relaxing. Cooking at home and packing your own lunch is a great way to save time/money and ensure that you meet your nutritional goals, but it can be difficult to find the time to fit food prep into our increasingly hectic schedules. Here are some simple tips that may help:
1. Use the Weekend to Shop & Season
Do as much as you can before the week kicks into gear. Plan your week ahead and enjoy a leisurely trip to the grocery or market. Once you return from that weekly shop, use the opportunity to season the meat you've purchased. Portion them in individual reusable ziplock bags and you've made it that much easier to prepare dinner (with leftovers) after a long day at work.
2. Learn to Love Big-Batch cooking
Use Sunday evening to prepare a tasty stew, pelau or chile which can give you a few days (or a full week) of meals at once. Need some variety in your diet? A large batch of roasted veggies, quinoa or wild rice can act as a healthy side dish for the entire week.
3. One Size Does Not Fit All
Use a variety of containers to manage your portion sizes and keep certain foods separate. You're making the effort to plan and prepare your meals, so pack it in a decent container so it stays fresh and good until you're ready to eat. The Joseph Joseph Nest Storage Twin Pack contains 8 containers of varying sizes that are air-tight, BPA free and freezer, microwave and dishwasher safe. Available online and in -store for $325. Discounted from $375.