One way to get creative with lunchtime options is to layer up flavours, textures and food groups. We find that layering is a great way to add variety to mealtimes and it is super easy. Make it fun by creating a DIY ‘build your own’ aspect to lunchtimes.
1. Grains. Every week (or few days) cook a new grain (Brown, red, white rice, quinoa, bulgar wheat, spelt etc). Use this as your base.
2. Flavour. Add some spices to your grains to schoosh them up a bit: - cumin, smoked paprika, garam masala…add a dash of extra flavour with a lashing of lovely rich oils like olive, avocado etc
3. Carbs. Think about bulking out with some delicious baked sweet or white potato - important for energy reserves!
4. Fats. Think avocado, smoked salmon, mackerel, fresh mayo, or yoghurt.
5. Pulses, chickpeas, beans…For a really simple one, literally just drain a can of mixed beans and cover in olive oil, sliced onion and season.
6. Protein. Top with poached egg, leftover fish, or roast chicken.
7. Greens! Salad leaves, chard is great for activating digestion and liver or steam some greens.
8. Texture. Have a jar of mixed seeds to hand to sprinkle over.
Try to avoid buying unnecessarily by using up store cupboard ingredients: jarred artichoke hearts, pickled beetroot etc. The key is: lots of variation, lots of colour, lots of flavour.