20 Plant based Gluten Free lunches that aren’t salads
"What do you eat, then?" I get asked all the time! It's true, if I don't eat conventional foods typically bought off the store shelves and I try to eat as much real food as is possible for my meals, my meals are not made up of meat, and they're not made up of grains, or at the least are gluten free, then yes, the average American eater might have difficulty contemplating what I might eat.
A moment of silence as we digest (no pun intended) the interesting phenomenon that I am the "weird" one. I choose to eat from the array of foods that are naturally provided for the way my body physiologically needs to be nourished, as close to nature as possible. This way of eating pre-dates the Industrial Age, our current times of chaos and hurry, processed, packaged, and convenient foods. I do not eat in a way that accommodates a hurried chaotic life by swinging through the local drive thru. I eat nature's fastest food: grab and go fruits and vegetables. I do not grab packages and bags on the go. I have no intention of creating that kind of rush and pressure in my life and have made choices accordingly. It does not mean that we do not have as much going on as every other family. It does mean, however, that we are not spending our time with the endless tasks that come with eating food that is less than (much less than) nourishing, including: trips to pick up prescriptions, visits at the doctor's office, getting cavities filled, psychiatric appointments for mental health, dermatology appointments for acne, countless trips to the package laden "grocery" store, weight loss activities, picking up snacks for the school event or birthday in the classroom, and more. Plus, the amount of garbage and recycling to deal with drastically increases with the convenience style of eating. We spend far less time now just on collecting, and paying for, disposing of our garbage.
It is said that the less a family eats at home, the more obesity rises. It is also said that the average person takes 4 minutes to clean up after a meal. This very statement alone should give us a clue as to the kind of "cooking" we are doing, if any, at home. What kind of "cooking" can we be doing if it only takes 4 minutes to clean up, except perhaps throwing away the pizza box?
Now, I know, life is busy and we often need to look for the simplest solution to get a nourishing meal, but it doesn't need to be through the drive thru and that doesn't need to mean SALAD, either. I follow DrFoodie's FRESH FRIDGE FORMULA for healthful fast food dining at home to make meals simple, nourishing, and easy. This means that the foods are fresh natural plant based foods, and are prepared and ready so that my day can mostly consist of 70% plant based nourishment throughout the day that is fast and easy. Things like rice, beans and noodles are pre-cooked and ready in the fridge so all I have to do is put it together. Listed below are 20 of my favorites.
1. Black Bean Wraps
Black beans, olives, avocado, salsa and corn on a tortilla
2. Veg and sweet potato fajitas
Peppers, onion, roasted Sweet Potato cubes on toasted tortilla
Rice, 3 beans, peppers, onions, tomatoes, tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder
4. Thai Noodle Salad made with:
Toss Thai Rice Noodles with Edamame, purple cabbage, kale, carrots, lime wedge, thai green curry dressing, and zucchini strands (pre done and in the fridge)
5. Tomato and basil pasta
Pasta, basil, sundried tomatoes, spinach, italian dressing
6. Baked Taquitos with avocado and hummus
In a corn tortilla, layer Avocado cubes, hummus, taco sauce. Roll up, drizzle with a little sunflower or olive oil, and oven bake at 350 for 20 minutes. These can be pre-made also and warmed in a toaster oven.
7. Lentil salad
Lentils, carrots, onions, nuts, sun seeds, kale and dressing of choice. If time allows, roast the blend with a little olive oil drizzled on top.
8. Loaded baked potato
Load a prebaked potato split down the center with beans, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots
9. Smashed Chickpea and avocado sandwich
All it takes is one can to 1 avocado, mash together with salt and pepper. On lettuce wrap or bread of choice.
10. Quinoa stuffed peppers
Stuff pre cooked Quinoa along with peppers and onions into a half bell pepper and bake until pepper shell is softened.
11. Mason Jar Salads
Pre-prepare any blend of fresh fridge foods into mason jars so that all you have to do is grab a jar from the fridge and go.
12. Chickpea Lemon and Rice
Squeeze lemon and 1 tbsp olive oil with salt over chickpeas. Roast until browned. ( can be done ahead of time) and eat with pre-cooked rice.
13. Guacamole and chips
fresh made guacamole from avocado and garlic, ready in the fridge, with your favorite snack crackers. I use homemade flax crackers or Rice Crisps(storebought)
14. Carmelized Onion Quesadilla
This is one of my son's favorites. It's easy to toss a couple of corn tortillas on a griddle with a little oil, then add spinach , mushroom, and carmelized onions.
15. Orange stirfry
Stifrys are fast and easy because you take handfuls of the veg you want, and toss with your favorite sauce. This one I used a ready prepared orange sauce.
16. Green curry stirfry
Same as above, just used a prepared curry sauce
17. Thai Green Curry Vegetables and Noodles with Peanut Sauce
Same as above, but I added rice noodles and a prepared peanut sauce
18. Enchilada loaded sweet potato
I used onions and green peppers with black beans tossed with an enchilada sauce, and then dropped it into a split whole sweet potato.
19. Bean and rice in a wrap
Easy peasy. Choose beans, a few spoonfuls of rice, rolled into a wrap or corn tortilla
20. Any Blend Veggies, noodles, and sauce
Grab a handful of veggies, add prepped noodles from the fridge, and pasta sauce. Toss in a pan if you prefer it warm.
21. Red beans and rice
The base is rice, with a spoonful of kidney beans, topped with veggies of choice
22. Potato salad
23. Corn tortilla taco salad
Corn tortilla chips, crushed. Add beans or lentils, veggies, and toss with a western style dressing.