Everyone can eat healthy if they put in a conscious effort, but when we’re heading out the door in haste, it’s easier to grab the leftover pizza in the fridge than take the time to mix up a salad. But maybe the problem isn’t that wholesome meals require effort, but rather we have yet to find a combination that hits our taste buds. Here are a couple of healthy lunch ideas that exceed the ordinary:
Avocado and Teriyaki Tofu Salad
Have you ever gone to a restaurant and ordered a salad, only to receive a bed of lettuce topped with a tomato slice and few measly cucumber pieces? And we wonder where the bland salad fallacy originated. Here’s the thing about salads: the toppings are boundless. They don’t need to be dull. In fact, if made with care, they are exactly the opposite. We recommend throwing in a few avocado slices (a heart healthy food that lowers cholesterol.) Marinate tofu chunks in a rich teriyaki sauce and quickly sauté© them in a frying pan, before throwing them into your meal. Want to crank up the flavour even more? Toss in some mango chunks to mix up your taste palette.
Grilled Pita with Natural Peanut Butter
When we were children, bringing a peanut butter and jelly sandwich to school could do as much as up our friend count. It was the it-grub of all sandwiches. Now, packing one in our briefcase can do the opposite. But that’s because we’ve yet to give the classic PB&J the healthy, modern twist it so desperately deserves. No longer must we resort to artificial, sweetened peanut butter (sorry, Jif) when all natural is the alternative. The ingredients? Crushed peanuts. Nothing more, nothing less. We recommend spreading some of this protein goodness onto whole-wheat bread or a pita, adding a touch of agave for sweetness, and topping it off with banana slices. Don’t stop there: throw it in the panini press for good measure.
Colourful Chickpea Medley
Ah, the chickpea. A simple legume that is high in protein, and is rarely given the proper credit it deserves. It’s always useful to store cans of chickpeas in your cupboard (the organic, unsalted kind) because they instantly add substance to almost any meal. But we all know a food on its own is a lackluster eat. Utilize the chickpea instead by throwing half a can into a frying pan with low sodium soup broth. Once the broth begins to boil, add a spoonful of paprika and cumin to create a rich, zesty sauce. Then dice up some onion, tomato and red pepper and throw in a cup of spinach. You’ll know your meals ready-to-munch once the broth evaporates.
Protein-packed Tortilla with Sweet Potato
Forget about that left over pizza in the fridge, because we have the perfect alternative. Making your own tortillas means more veggies (and less carbs!) than any standard pizza you would think to order. Throw some black beans, tomatoes, sweet potato and onion into a frying pan with a pinch of cumin and coriander. Once all the toppings are sizzling, place them into the tortilla bread, and toss on a spoonful of salsa and low-fat sour cream. Modify the dish as you desire, by adding tofu slices or lean chicken for an extra protein boost. Pst “ the filling is great to use later on top of a salad or as a side dish.