Because of the recent changes brought about by the global pandemic, many adults have found that their lifestyles have drastically changed. For many months, employees who used to physically report for work in offices have adjusted their daily routine to a work-from-home setup. This caused many to transform their schedules in many ways depending on their work and home responsibilities.
For instance, those who used to wake up early in the morning to prepare breakfast for their families as well as pack lunch to be taken to school or to work were able to allot more time during the day to prepare food. As such, this has greatly influenced people’s nutrition and meal preparation.
As economies opened up again recently, workers began to return to their former daily routines. Many of them once again had to plan meals and prepare adult lunch boxes to take to the office. However, because of months of remote work, it could be challenging for some to come up with new lunch ideas that would suit the new normal lifestyle.
If you’re tasked to prepare meals for you and your family, you may be looking for new recipes and dishes to add variety to what you usually serve. Remember to start with easy recipes and work your way up to more complicated recipes as you gain more experience. As such, here are a few lunch ideas that you may find useful in adjusting to the new normal:
- Wraps And Sandwiches
For those who are struggling to get back to their early morning meal prep routine, packing pita wraps and sandwiches may be an ideal option. This is because these food items are not only healthy but easy to prepare as well. Additionally, they can also be made ahead of time and stay fresh when served as long as they’re wrapped in foil, packed in an airtight container, and kept in the refrigerator overnight.
- Make-Ahead Freezer Meals
If you have time to cook dishes in big batches, make-ahead meals may be a great way for you to save time and effort in packing daily lunchboxes. This way, you can cook different dishes at the same time and keep them in small portions inside the freezer for faster, more convenient packing during the day. For safe food handling, however, experts advise putting labels with “consume before” dates on top of the food containers to avoid consuming unsafe or spoiled food.
- 15-Minute Stir Fry Dishes
For those who are looking to “empty” their fridge by using up all the left-over ingredients before they spoil, making a stir fry dish might be the solution you’re looking for. Stir fry dishes are easy to prepare and cook, and you can use just about any ingredient you have left in your kitchen. For instance, you can use leafy greens, instant noodles, leftover rice, and even canned vegetables to create a hearty stir fry dish which you can season to suit your taste. Because the ingredients are minimal and won’t need too much preparation, your lunch box will be ready in no time.
- One-Pot Pasta
When you’re in a hurry to prepare food, cooking pasta may not be the first idea that comes to mind. However, preparing a pasta dish may be made easier if the noodles won’t have to be boiled in a separate pot. Recently, one-pot pasta recipes became popular as they make cooking a whole dish more convenient. The secret to achieving the ideal texture of cooked pasta is by putting enough water in the sauce. The excess moisture will then be absorbed by the noodles which will help it achieve the soft yet chewy al dente texture, ideal in this type of dish.
Salads may be one of the easiest and quickest dishes to make and they’re ideal for packing a simple yet healthy lunch in a busy morning. You can use any vegetable you have in your fridge and combine it with protein such as cheese, eggs, ham, left-over chicken, and others. The dressing could be as simple as a vinaigrette using salad vinegar or lemon, or any store-bought dressing you have available in your pantry. Also, since salads can be easily prepared, even the young family members can take part in meal preparation so that they can learn something new and feel involved as well.
Preparing meals, as simple as it may sound, can be challenging to do daily. Given the recent changes in people’s lifestyles all over the world, it may have become even harder to do for many. However, nutrition and health must be given priority for everyone to cope with the demands and challenges of the new normal. The global pandemic has made the world recognize the importance of health and wellness. As such, it will be highly beneficial for you and your family to invest time and effort in taking care of your daily nutrition by preparing healthy meals regularly.