Thursday, September 26, 2013

How to pack for work: yogurt parfait and tuna arugula salad

Now that I am working part time at Tufts' Health Education Department, I have been waking up extra early to pack my breakfast and lunch. It's a great morning ritual that I have developed that gives me some time to wake up and get the gears running in the morning (caffeine free). And instead of just having leftovers every day, I do enjoy a fresh start once in awhile. So here are some ideas for super quick meals and snacks to pack with you to work when you're looking for something healthy, filling, and refreshing. 

Breakfast parfait
4-6oz non/low fat plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup frozen blueberries 
1/4 cup granola 

1. Scoop the yogurt into a portable container. 
2. Then add the blueberries. 
3. Add the granola last so that it won't be too soggy by the time you eat it at work. 

✓ low fat dairy
✓ protein
✓ fruit
✓ whole grains

- I always have some frozen blueberries or raspberries in the freezer for occasions like these. But obviously feel free to substitute in fresh berries or any chopped up fruit. 
- Sprinkle on the flax seed and the chia! 
- When buying granola, look for one that is not too high in added sugars (no more than 8g/serving)
- I prefer buying plain yogurt because I like to know how much added sugar I am consuming. Sometimes I add a drizzle of honey to my yogurt parfaits, depending on how sour my fruit is. 
- I like the thick creaminess of Greek yogurt, but feel free to use regular yogurt as well. 
- Adding a teaspoon of chocolate covered cacao nibs is a win also.
- Try it savory! Stir in olive oil, cucumbers, and grape tomatoes.  

Tuna Arugula Salad
2 cups arugula
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
1/2 avocado, sliced
2 oz tuna in olive oil
1-2 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp black pepper

1. Line a portable container with arugula.
2. Add the tomatoes, avocado, and tuna.
3. Drizzle on the olive oil and sprinkle on the black pepper.

✓ vegetables
✓ fruit
✓ monounsaturated fat
✓ polyunsaturated fat
✓ protein

- Avocados and tomatoes are technically fruit. But the main point is that avocados are a great source of monounsaturated fat and tomatoes are a great source of vitamin A and C.
- For avocados, buy them when they are green. They will turn dark themselves after 2-3 days. This way ensures that your avocado won't be bruised and brown when you cut them open! 
- I use a tuna that comes in a jar with olive oil. Feel free to use any type of canned tuna, but make sure that it's in water or olive oil. Check the nutrition labels because it can get pretty high in sodium. 
- If you're not into tuna, try cooking chicken breast the night before and tossing it into your salad instead.
- The avocado and tuna are already quite flavorful, but if you want another level of taste, try using a teaspoon of pesto as your dressing instead. 


✓ fruit
✓ fiber

I always like to be snack secure, so I tend to always have something extra with me. I try to always have it be a fruit because they're packed with vitamins and fiber, which make you healthy and full. If you want to add some protein to your snack, enjoy your apple with a cube of cheese or a tablespoon of peanut butter.

Other fruits I like packing with me: banana, grapes, orange, kiwi, berries

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