Wasn't sure which forum to post this under... But I'm in desperate search of wheat free packed lunch ideas! This week I made a batch of mini frittatas and have been taking them to school but clearly I need different options! I have access to a microwave but I would prefer not to use it. Obviously sandwhiches are out.
05-07-2013, 04:02 PM
Things I pack for my work lunch:
brown rice with either salmon or chicken
spanish tortilla (eggs, potatoes, and onions)
tuna salad (tuna, onions, mayo, also good with carrots and celery)
boiled eggs, veggie strips with hummus
05-07-2013, 04:02 PM
Disclaimer: I'm not wheat free, so I don't know if any of my advice will be useful. ;)
When I make dinner I make extra and take that with me for lunch. Last night I fixed chicken breasts and spinach salad. Today I changed it up by having cottage cheese as my side.
I also like to put chicken breasts in the crock pot and shred them at the beginning of the week. That way I always have chicken ready for salads. You could also use it to make lettuce wraps. I've also made chicken enchiladas using corn tortillas, and chicken tacos. Shredded chicken is very handy to have around...the possibilities are endless!
Man, I eat a lot of chicken!
05-07-2013, 04:06 PM
You can find some terrific recipes that use almond flour (no gluten) at ElanasPantry dot com. I'm not strictly gluten free just trying to limit carbs and Elana has some really good recipes for breads, muffins, etc that are very easy to make and have no gluten at all, and are higher protein. There are even some breads that are not sweet and could be used for sandwiches. You can get almond flour on line and probably in health food stores. Everything I've made from that site has been good. Almond flour is just ground almonds, and not particularly low calorie, so you do have to watch the serving sizes.
05-07-2013, 04:28 PM
[FYI: I'm wheat-free because of an allergy, transitioning to gluten-free to see if that has any additional effect. I usually prefer to eat vegetarian and don't eat much dairy besides yogurt.]
Just some ideas, in no particular order:
As far as packed lunch goes, I usually like some kind of salad (not lettuce salad, like bean salad.) Chickpeas are unexpectedly awesome as a base for that kind of thing, so I eat them several times a week at lunch. Egg salad is yummy too, and totally diet-friendly if you make it as boiled eggs + plain greek yogurt (regular yogurt would work too) + spices. Tastes just like the real thing to me. Chicken salad could be similarly dietified, but I have to say that I haven't personally tried that yet. I like a Mexican-style salad with black beans, frozen corn (keeps it cold for a while), tomatoes, cilantro onion, garlic, etc (whatever I have on hand that sounds good, really.) Experiment a little with the bean salads - you're sure to find a combo you like.
Quinoa and brown rice are also good non-wheat bases for lunch salads. There's just too many uses to list here.
Another favorite of mine is stuffed sweet potatoes. Just stick a sweet potato in the microwave, cut it partially open, and stuff it with whatever you want (I most often eat a kale + cranberry + nut stuffing, or quinoa + vegetable + spice stuffing.) Keeps well, depending on what you stuff with.
I've heard that kale salads are really good after they've been pre-dressed and sat in the fridge overnight. Planning on trying that sometime (I don't particularly like salad dressing, so I have to find one I like first.)
Oatmeal makes a good lunch too - it's not just for breakfast. Soooo many potential variations. If you're pressed for time in the morning, it's super-easy to mix it up the night before and stick it in the fridge (refrigerator oatmeal.)
Recently there's been a bit of a fad with "salads in a jar." As I understand, you put the dressing on the bottom, which prevents everything from getting soggy before you eat it. Haven't tried it yet but it looks good.
Soup is a go-to if there's a microwave. I'm particularly fond of meatless chili for ease of preparation.
There are a few rice noodle "just add hot water" lunches out there (look in the Thai or Asian section of your grocery store). On that note, red rice noodles with some kind of sauce and a vegetable is simple and yummy.
Sometimes you can use lettuce instead of bread to wrap sandwiches. Corn and brown rice tortillas work too.
When I was in Mexico one of my favorite lunches was tamales. Oh so good. Grocery store frozen ones here in the U.S. are decent, but I want to try making it myself sometime.
I'm not always very hungry at lunch, so sometimes I might even have just a whole bell pepper stuffed with hummus and deli turkey. Fruit salad or simply a few different whole fresh fruits are also "light lunch" possibilities.
You can always add sides of fresh veggies and fruit to make a larger meal. If you're interested in any of these options, I can dig up some recipes for you.
P.S. - Sandwiches don't have to be out, either. I love my homemade flaxseed focacia bread that I use for sandwiches.
05-07-2013, 04:43 PM
How about a large salad for lunch, with different things for protein on different days?
05-07-2013, 10:58 PM
I'm wheat free but sometimes have sandwiches made with GF bread. I don't pack lunches much, though. For portable food, I like lettuce wraps made with tuna & cheese & packed in a cooler. I also like GF protein drinks and hard boiled eggs.
05-08-2013, 10:26 PM
Disclaimer - I'm not wheat free, just low carb, but I started getting tired of salads. My lunch is almost always just protein and non starchy veggies.
Low fat cottage cheese - add in salsa or olives (black or green) for savory, cinnamon/nutmeg/Splenda or orange extract/cocoa powder/Splenda for sweet
Low fat or fat free ricotta cheese - Splenda and extract to flavor - almond, orange, coconut are all great. So is cocoa powder. It's almost like cheesecake.
For veggies, salad or frozen veggies. Boxed veggies got expensive, so I bought a glass container with a rubbery lid. I season the frozen veggies at home - smoked salt, pepper, lemon juice, flavored olive oil - then nuke it at work.
Leftover frittatas are great cold or reheated.
Plain Greek yogurt is good savory, too - my favorite is sliced green olives. I've also put it over Chana masala - sorta like sour cream.
One of these days I'm going to make a meal of hummus and veggies. I lurrrrve hummus!
05-08-2013, 10:51 PM
Greek yogurt + nuts + fruit + a veggie? That actually sounds like a really good lunch; I might do that on Saturday!
05-09-2013, 12:46 AM
I'm low carb and wheat free. And, in fact, have to pack a lunch for a day long board meeting tomorrow (I don't work, but I am the public member of a state board).
- salad with pepperoni/peppers/green onions/mushrooms/almonds/feta and dressing
5 Brazil nuts
2 oz jarlsberg cheese
1 tin sardines and some mustard
1/2 cup blueberries with 2 tbsp heavy whipping cream
That should hold me over from breakfast (coffee with 1 tbsp heavy whipping cream) to evening when the whole shebang gets out. It's several containers and bags of food, but plenty of bulk for filling me up, two go-to snacks for munching when others might be eating crackers or donuts, and even a dessert so I'm not tempted by the sugary junk down in the cafe. It's about 2/3 of my daily calories, too, so I will be well satisfied and not out of control hungry for lunch.
Oh yeah, and it's fairly low carb (that menu works out to about 20 net carbs), high fat, and gluten free :)
05-09-2013, 09:30 AM
I love eating soup for lunch, and you could always keep it hot in a thermos so you don't have to microwave it. It has to be VERY hot in the morning to keep warm for afternoon. I use a microwave daily so I can batch cook and freeze in portions. Right now in my freezer I have spicy tomato blue cheese soup, broccoli cheese and white bean soup, santa fe chicken, turkey veggie chili, cauliflower dal, carrot peanut soup, split pea soup, and curry lentil soup.
One of my favorite things to make at home is veggie "pasta" (zucchini or yellow squash sliced into ribbons and sauteed) with meatballs/veggie balls/no balls :p and tomato sauce with a bit of cream cheese stirred in to make it pink. The other day I made the zucchini noodles with a crumbled hot Italian turkey sausage, a quick slurry with flour of choice and milk of choice, and I threw in a small handful of cheese. It made "macaroni-less" sausage cheese.
For snacks I love jerky, nuts, dried fruit, grape tomatoes, baby carrots, peppers (with dipping sauce of hummus or dressing), and lately I've been packing radishes with cracked salt and pepper so I can dip it in cream cheese mixed with chopped scallions or chives. RIDICULOUSLY GOOD!
05-09-2013, 09:43 AM
Like Riddy and a few others, I'm low-carb, which is wheat-free, but also starch and sugar free. Still, maybe some of my favorite lunches will intrigue you.
Cucumber "boats" with tuna salad: I rotated this out because I grew bored with it, but I think I'm going to add it back next week. You take a large english cucumber, slice it in half lengthwise and widthwise, then scoop out the seeds. Put this in two baggies (one cuc was two day's worth for me), and then make tuna salad with your preferred recipe. Store in a take-along container. When ready to eat, spoon the tuna into the hollowed out cucumber and eat. Yummy, crunchy, and very healthy.
Leftover meat over a garden salad: Whatever salad you enjoy, with a few slices of the previous night's protein. Works great with grilled chicken/london broil, but I have also crumbled a hamburger on it and dressed it with guacamole instead of salad dressing.
Bunless burger: Unless you like cold hamburgers, you will want to use the microwave for this. It only takes me about 50 seconds to nuke a precooked burger. I grill 5 burgers on sunday and put them away for lunches during the week. (I top mine with swiss cheese and bacon, then add guacamole after I've nuked it, but if you are not on a high-fat diet, you might want to dress it with mustard or something else instead.)
05-09-2013, 10:34 AM
I just remembered another one. Mori-nu tofu (the shelf stable one that looks like a juice box) has a recipe on the side for faux egg salad. I don't follow it exactly, but I really like it for a change of pace. I like to dip baby bell peppers in it.