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What do you eat for lunch? I have been eating a gluten free protein bar and an apple for lunch lately, because there's nowhere nearby I can eat on my lunch break. I like to eat healthy and I was wondering what you all pack in your lunch?? I'm getting a little bit sick of protein bars :P

P.S. Also, I was wondering if anyone has any ideas of a Vegetarian lunch. I am not vegetarian, but am paranoid about having lunch meat sit out for hours before I eat it (even in a cooler with an icepack!). Thanks!! :)

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Various salads work great-rice, quinoa and bean besides the lettuce variety. Take a wild rice blend and cook it(or use leftovers). Add vinaigrette, nuts, dried fruit and you have a great salad. Quinoa is great with mexican ingredients added-black beans salsa, corn etc. There are many recipes out there for that type. You can make tabhoulle(sp?) too, using quinoa instead of the usual grain. I make a bean salad too. The lunch meats will be fine. Don't worry. I like chicken sausages because they are flavorful and don't have to be warmed up to taste good if I don't have access to a place to warm them up. I like these-minus the skewers-for a lunchbox too. http://www.befreeforme.com/ViewRecipe.aspx?RecipeID=128

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I don't work outside the house now and I gave up eating lunch. When I did work, at one place I had a large refrigerator I could put my lunch in. There, I would take a half a canteloupe hollowed out and filled with cottage cheese, or a large tossed salad with cheese, kidney and/or garbanzo beans and nuts. Sometimes took leftovers. We also had a microwave.

When I worked at the golf course there was no fridge I could use. There was a snack bar. Of course they had fridges there but not for my use! So there I took a larger than a 6 pack cooler with several blue ice packs in it. The Pro Shop got very hot so I needed extra ice. Sometimes I took insulated containers. Might have cottage cheese and fruit, sometimes a tossed salad like above, chicken or tuna salad. I did eat Tiger's Milk bars in those days (not sure if they are gluten-free and no longer eat soy) so I would bring those or if I was in a real hurry, just some cold cereal in a bag.

Another thing I ate a lot of at various times in my life was trail mix. I made up my own with nuts, seeds, dried fruit, coconut and maybe some chocolate or carob chips.

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I have access to a fridge, so I take alot of left overs, soup, salads, rice crackers with various toppings. I freeze lots of soup, risottos, rice dishes in single serves so I can defrost and take to work for lunches.

I have not had the school lunch problem yet, although as of next week DD will have to start eating gluten-free so I am in for a challenge.

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Foods/meals that come to my mind right away that I bring to work.....

Lunches:

*Rice with veggies

*White Corn tortilla with cheese, honey mustard, slice of hormel natural choice deli meat, nuts and some lettuce (wraps)

I heat the Mission Corn Tortillas up in a pan to brown it a little and it gives it a different taste then just out of the bag and helps it from breaking.

*Gluten Free Pasta Salad

*Corn Tortilla with Peanut Butter and chopped up small apples or jam in it

*Left over dinner

Things for during the day at work:

*Apples alone or with peanut butter (or some other plain fruit)

*Celery or Carrots with peanut butter

*Corn tortilla chips

*Rasins

*Nuts

*homemade cookie (I'll bring 1 or 2 if I make any).....

Hope this helped some....

Good Luck

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If you have access to a fridge and microwave, lunches are pretty simple, but even if you don't, remember that many of us who grew up in the 60s and 70s survived an awful lot of lunches that sat in a room temperature locker all morning. Granted, a lot of it was sandwiches, but I think most lunchmeats and cheeses can survive those few hours without becoming evil and poisonous. Many is the time I forgot to put my lunch of leftovers in the fridge when I got to work and ate it safely. I recently found out that many of my Chinese coworkers who bring lunch from home don't refrigerate it, and this includes rice, veggies, and meats leftover from dinner. Chances are you'll be fine if the food you bring was safe in the first place.

I do have to say that Lebanon boloney has a unique taste after those hours in the locker that you just can't get right out of the fridge. Those of you from Pennsylvania might know what I mean! :lol:

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A thermos is a great investment. I send my son to school with mac & cheese, quiche, lasagna, ham & beans, fried rice. The trick is to put boiling water in it for 10 minutes before adding hot food. It's always warm when he eats it.

As for cold, we regularly put blue ice packs in with tuna salad, a veggie concoction dip with tortilla chips, hard boiled eggs, yogurt with berries, etc.

PB&J on pamela pancakes is good too.

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I am lucky to have a full kitchen where I work now. It makes lunches much nicer. When I didn't, though, I would stick to fruits and veggies that did not need refrigerating, cereal, dried fruit, low-fat chips, muffins, fruit bars, Thai Kitchen microwavable soups (if there is a microwave and water), etc. Sometimes I would bring bread, a tomato, a packet condiment, and have a little sandwich. Mostly, I took what was in season and on sale: plums, pears, oranges, bananas, apples, kiwis, peaches, grapes, etc.

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I mostly made sandwiches or bought school lunches last year, so I've been thinking about this. Luckily I have about a month to come up with some good lunch menus.

So far, I've been thinking salads and some nuts would probably be best. The administration banned classroom microwaves at the end of last year, so that means there's about 4 microwaves for 200+ teachers and staff to use in 35 minutes... I'm not going to count on being able to heat anything up. I made some pretty good gluten free cornbread earlier this week, so that might be a good thing to bring along, too.

Other than that and some fruit to snack on, though, I'm a bit stumped. Maybe some chili and soup in a thermos in the winter would be good.

I love all the suggestions here. :)

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Often I cook up a bunch of chicken thighs (enough for 4 or 5 days) and put in my fridge at home, take with veggie & rice wherever I'm going for lunch. If there's a fridge I end up microwaving to warm up, if no fridge I put in an insulated bag (without an ice pack) and eat at room-ish temp.

Sometimes, especially if not much protein in the fridge, tuna fish salad and crackers or rice ("salad" for me is just add mayo and tarragon) - if I'm not near a refrigerator I sometimes put it in the freezer, just make sure that it's out for at least 6 hours or so or it will still be frozen!

Basically for me, lunch is protein + starch + veggie, the starch is usually rice (which I also cook up 4 or 5 days at a time for lunch), the veggie is usually something that's good raw or room temp (carrots, broccoli, even frozen peas which I just run hot water over briefly to thaw if still frozen), protein = whatever was on a really good sale that week!

Snacks - nuts, boiled egg, tortilla chips, more veggies.

Good luck with finding a lunch that works for you!

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What do you eat for lunch? I have been eating a gluten free protein bar and an apple for lunch lately, because there's nowhere nearby I can eat on my lunch break. I like to eat healthy and I was wondering what you all pack in your lunch?? I'm getting a little bit sick of protein bars :P

P.S. Also, I was wondering if anyone has any ideas of a Vegetarian lunch. I am not vegetarian, but am paranoid about having lunch meat sit out for hours before I eat it (even in a cooler with an icepack!). Thanks!! :)

Salads salads salads!! Both vegge and fruit salads are easy and taste great -- you can even make a bigger batch and use it for a couple days. I tend to bring a lot of portable fruits and veges (carrots, celery, broccoli, applesauce/apples, grapes, oranges, etc) Rice cakes, crackers or cereal are easy to transport as a side. As far as the lunch meat...I definitely have similar worries about it, but I have one of these and LOVE it! --

http://www.builtny.com/showPage.php?pageID=1570

Check out the website -- the bags are made of Neoprene and keep food insulated for up to 4 hours. I absolutley love mine and they come in multiple colors and styles (check out the builtny site in general, there are multiple lunch/drink/food totes to check out there!)

http://www.builtny.com/showPage.php?pageID=1612

If you're really concerned, throw an ice-pack in there and you'll be all set! Hope this helps!

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I had a yummy lunch the other day...bean salad (4 kinds of beans, onions, r&g bell peppers), pickled beets and a zucchini brownie. I like cottage cheese with fruit. Or yogurt, nuts and fruit added.

I sent cheddar cheese sticks and ham strips, with the bean salad and some fruit, in my dh's lunch b/c "we" are tired of making sandwiches (only the kids are gluten-free).

I love baked beans hot or cold.

I sent chicken stir fry for my dd to warm up at work with some zucchini brownies too. She hates anything green except for broccoli. She loved the brownies...lol!

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I echo the same responses others have given...salads! Almost every day for work I bring a garden-like salad...greens, plus a variety of veggies (right now baby tomatoes, since it's summer!), snap peas, broccoli, whatever I have! Add a bit of leftover roast chicken, a hardboiled egg, or some cheese. Sometimes I even had a handful of sunflower seeds. Pack that and the dressing, plus some fruit and nuts or homemade trail mix to snack on, and it all fits and stays cold in my cheap-o insulated lunch bag, along with an ice pack, for many hours. I plan on expanding my variety to include cold quinoa salads and such soon!

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The other day I made a quinoa salad. Cooked the quinoa in 1/2 C white wine, bal liquid chx stock. Sauteed a bunch of red and green peppers, onions, and mushrooms and some bite-sized ckx breasts pieces. Mixed it all in a big bowl and added fresh cherry tomatoes, lots of fresh basil, and a handfull of romano. Was good cold as a side or warmed as a main. It made a ton.

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The other day I made a quinoa salad. Cooked the quinoa in 1/2 C white wine, bal liquid chx stock. Sauteed a bunch of red and green peppers, onions, and mushrooms and some bite-sized ckx breasts pieces. Mixed it all in a big bowl and added fresh cherry tomatoes, lots of fresh basil, and a handfull of romano. Was good cold as a side or warmed as a main. It made a ton.

That sounds DELICIOUS!! How much quinoa did you use?

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For lunch I will put quinoa and chicken ( I can't think vegitarian....broccoli may taste good though) in a soup container and I will drink water and honestly, I can't seem to stray from my Sugar Babys. :lol:

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