On The Early Show Saturday, nutrition contributor and registered dietician Keri Glassman explained how you can meet all your brown-bagging goals by using - leftovers!
You could simply make a little more of each item in your Sunday dinner, and add a few things, to wind up with lunches for every workday for a week - and quickly prepare meals that are scrumptious and healthy.
The secret is bringing in lunches that will save you money, but won't give you the same amount of fat and calories you may get by eating out. You can bring food that's healthy and delicious.
With these suggestions, you can use a lot of what you already have in the house, or use leftovers from last night's dinner. There are lots of ways to keep your brown bag lunch healthy and economical:
MONDAY LUNCH: LEFTOVERS SALAD
This uses romaine lettuce, hard-boiled eggs, leftover chicken, chickpeas, edamame, and any other veggies you might have left over. Pair that with a handful of whole grain crackers and a peach.
Grill chicken breasts, prep green salad with any veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower, keep the hard-boiled egg whole, chickpeas and edamame, which you should steam Sunday night as well, in one container. Pair that with a handful of whole grain crackers and a peach.
TUESDAY LUNCH: GREEK SALAD
This is a ground-up turkey burger, again from last night's dinner, over romaine lettuce, tomato, cucumbers and a little sprinkle of feta. Have some soy chips on the side.
It's the same salad you prepped, but this time, add cucumbers and tomatoes. Portion feta and olives on the side. Add chicken you grilled - and have some soy chips on the side.
WEDNESDAY LUNCH: SALMON SALAD SANDWICH
This is made with canned salmon, as an alternative to tuna, mixed with nonfat Greek yogurt, dill and onion powder (and capers if you want them). It's served on whole wheat bread with onions and romaine. On the side, you have an apple and two teaspoons of peanut butter.
You can have a salmon salad sandwich. Put aside can of salmon (or tuna if this is too daring for you), 1 container plain yogurt, packet of mustard and mix it at work with salmon - 1 TBSP of yogurt and mustard and fill a whole wheat pita. On the side, you have an apple and slice into the remainder of the yogurt!!!
THURSDAY LUNCH: ASIAN PASTA SALAD
Here you take whole wheat pasta with edamame, water chestnuts and shredded carrots. Toss it with sesame oil and white vinegar or soy sauce. Have some cantaloupe and honeydew cubes on the side.
Remember the pasta you had for dinner? Add edamame - which you already made for Monday's salad. Add shredded carrots and canned water chestnuts. Put sesame oil and vinegar on the side and at work! Have some cantaloupe and honeydew cubes on the side.
FRIDAY LUNCH: PEANUT BUTTER DIP AND PITA BREAD QUESADILLA
It's made in a whole wheat wrap, with a little peanut butter, a dash of cinnamon and banana. On the side, you have a little nonfat yogurt and some baby carrots to munch on.
Peanut butter dip and pita bread - put 2 TBSP in container on the side. Have some nonfat yogurt on the side. Add 1 TBSP to the peanut butter to make a dip. Slice pita into quarters. Have banana, carrots and apple on the side, sliced. Dip it all into PB dip and have your remaining yogurt on the side.
Veggie Pita: Whole wheat pita with hummus, avocado slices (or quac), tomato, sprouts, red and yellow peppers, cucumbers. Small apple and bag of soy chips.
Cuban Sandwich: Leftover pork tenderloin, Alpine Lace reduced fat Swiss, sweet pickles with spicy mustard. Serve on whole grain bread. Small banana.
Antipasto Chicken Wrap: Whole wheat wrap with grilled chicken, roasted red peppers (jarred or from last night's bbq), sliced artichoke hearts and mustard or olive oil and vinegar. Celery and 2 tsp. peanut butter.