Quick Work Lunch Ideas

Hello Everyone, I hope your day has been well.

I’ve literally been carrying packed lunches with me for such a long time, back when I was in school as a kid up till now as an adult going to work. I love carrying lunches to work, not only do you save money but you can personalise your meals and really enjoy what you’re eating. There are a lot more options available now but the general cheese and salad or chicken mayo just doesn’t do it for me. Most days I keep my lunches pretty simple because I don’t like feeling super full or bloated at work, so I opt for foods that are fairly filling, nutritious but still tasty. Recently, I’ve been preparing my work lunches before I leave out in the mornings so that I have even more time to myself when I get back in the late afternoon/evening.

I think my current favourite lunch for work has to be a seasoned couscous salad, usually plain couscous sprinkled with salt, chilli flakes, garlic powder and dried herbs. Sometimes I’ll even add some toasted pine nuts for extra flavour which are high in calories, specifically protein helping me to keep fuller for longer.

Quick work lunches ideas:

  • Cheese sandwich
  • Peanut butter sandwich
  • Jam sandwich
  • Pasta: sauce, tuna, sweetcorn, carrot, spring onion, cheese, kale
  • Leftover homemade pizza
  • Couscous salad: tuna, sweetcorn, carrot, pine nuts, lettuce, cucumber, radish, sliced spring onions
  • Crackers, carrot sticks apples slices, nuts
  • Brioche, carrot sticks, nuts
  • Cheesy bread, carrot and cucumber sticks

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Homemade Pizza topped with tuna, sweetcorn and kale

Hello Everyone, I hope your day has been well.

If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know that pizza is literally one of my favourite foods. It is so versatile, a winner with most people and always turns out great. Here I’m sharing a recipe I often make, topped with tuna, sweetcorn and kale.

Recipe: Homemade pizza (makes 2 oven trays)

Ingredients

500g plain flour

7g dried yeast

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp oil

270ml warm water

Toppings: tomato puree, kale, tuna, sweetcorn, cheese

Method

  • Add the flour, yeast and salt into a large bowl and make a well.
  • Pour the water into the well along with the oil and use your fingers in a circular motion to mix the dough.
  • Once it comes together, knead for 5-10 minutes. Set aside until doubled in time, in the same bowl covered with clingfilm or a clean tea towel.
  • During that time, prepare all of your toppings, lightly oil 2 oven trays and preheat the oven.
  • Gently knock the air from the dough, split into two. Roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface, making sure it is smaller than the oven tray.
  • Add the tomato puree, toppings and cheese, then bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until fully cooked.

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Vegan Kale and Walnut Pesto Pasta

Hi everyone, I hope your day has been well.

The recipe I’m sharing today is one that I’ve had written down for a few years and I finally decided to make it. It’s very green and has such spring vibes about it which I love. Its a great meal idea for those warmer afternoons/evenings when your feeling hungry but don’t want too much too eat. Its super healthy from the kale and peas and the blitzed walnuts provide a creamy flavour.

Walnuts contain the good fats and are a valuable source of omega-3, especially for vegetarians and vegans. Garden peas are a great source of iron which helps to transport oxygen around the body and produce red blood cells. There are so many varieties of kale, here I’ve used curly kale which is most common in supermarkets. Kale is a fantastic source of vitamin C, this is another powerful antioxidants that aids vital functions of the bodies cell’s. Overall, a very nice mixture of vitamins and minerals.

I wasn’t a complete fan of the taste as once its blended the flavour can become much more stronger however it’s something I could get used to. This is a vegan recipe however, you could sprinkle some cheese over the top for more flavour.

Recipe: Vegan kale and walnut pesto pasta (serves 2)

Ingredients

1/4 bag of kale

100g garden peas

200g dried fusilli

28g walnuts

1 garlic clove

Sprinkle of salt

25g oil

1 tbsp lemon juice

Method

  • Put a small pot of water to boil, add the kale and peas cooking for 3-4 minutes. Scoop out the veg draining off any excess water through a colander and reuse the water for the pasta.
  • Cook the pasta according to the packets instructions and set aside once cooked. Saving 1/3 of the liquid
  • In a blender, add the kale, peas, walnuts, garlic, oil and enough liquid so that it blends to a smooth yet creamy consistency.
  • Tip the pesto mixture back into the pot and heat through for at least 5 minutes before adding the pasta. Stir everything together.
  • Serve the pasta between two plates and drizzle a little lemon juice over the top.

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Seasoned Sweet Potato

Hello everyone, I hope your day has been well.

Today is all about sweet potatoes, a favorite carbohydrate of mine. Although there are many different varieties, 9/10 is will taste sweet, hence the name. The subtle, sweet flavour makes them the perfect ingredient for vegetable curries, pies, soups and so much more. Sweet potatoes are a great source of fibre along with a range of other vitamins, such as iron, selenium and calcium but the fibre specifically is known to be beneficial to the immune system. Also, the vitamin C content is apparently raised from cooking. For this recipe, I decided to lightly fry the sweet potato to reduce any moisture on the outer surface and then bake in the oven for a little while so that the seasonings could be infused into the smooth center.

This is a super quick, tasty dish to cook and is a great accompaniment to most meals.

Recipe: Seasoned sweet potato (serves 1)

Ingredients

1 sweet potato, cut into pieces

Paprika

Salt

Sugar

Chilli flakes

Cumin

Oil, for frying

Method

  • Heat some oil in a deep pan.
  • Start preparing the potato by peeling, chopping and set aside in water.
  • Once the oil is hot enough, add all of the sweet potato and fry for 5-7 minutes stirring regularly.
  • After the 7 minutes, transfer the potato to a tray with tissue paper on top to soak up the excess oil.
  • Remove the tissue paper and sprinkle the potatoes with a little paprika, salt, chilli flakes, cumin and sugar.
  • Bake in the oven for up to 10 minutes and serve.

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Quinoa and Kale Salad

Hello Everyone, I hope your day has been well.

I’m bringing you another, delicious salad that is perfect for a light lunch or a side dish for dinner. Either way it’s super tasty and packed full of nutrients from the kale, carrot, cucumber and lettuce. Quinoa is a very popular food item because of it’s nutritional content and being a quality source of plant protein. Overall, quinoa is a great source of various minerals and a good food to include your diet. Likewise with carrots, they are a great, nutritious vegetable but not as popular because it’s something we are used to eating and seeing so often. Carrots are known to be rich in beta carotene, which converts to vitamin A in the body, this is essential for immune function and good vision. Not only are carrots nutritious, they have a nice crunchy texture and can be cooked in many ways.

This salad is a recipe I made for one in the early evening when I didn’t have much of an appetite but knew I’d be hungry later. This is a really nice recipe for when you are short for time but still want to eat something nourishing for the body.

Recipe: Quinoa and kale salad (serves 1)

Ingredients

30g dried quinoa

Pinch of a stock cube

1/2 handful of kale

1 lettuce leaf, shredded

1/2 carrot, grated

1 inch cucumber, finely sliced

Pinch of chilli

Method

  • Cook the quinoa according to the packet, I like to add a pinch of stock cube to the water for more flavour.
  • 5 minutes before the quinoa is cooked, add the kale and mix through.
  • In the meantime, prepare the salads and set aside.
  • Once the quinoa is cooked, mix in the salads and sprinkle over a little chilli flakes.

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*Nutritional info sourced through Google scholar