Sunday, February 17, 2013

Gluten Free Lunches/Snacks

A while ago Kate at Gluten-Free Gobsmacked asked about the type of gluten free lunches people take to work, being tired of mainly salads herself.  I sympathize with her plight as there are many times I would LOVE to be able to just grab something as I run out of the house and not have to plan ahead.  So I was thrilled to see these GOPICNIC boxes at my local Target. 
I first encountered GOPICNIC at a small airport when I was desperate for anything gluten-free.  The GOPICNIC box I found was fun, delicious, and safe.  Since then I have been asking all of the local grocery stores to carry them and I guess Target finally listened!  I bought as many gluten free GOPICNIC varieties as they had in stock.

At this point I should qualify that I am only planning to use these in an emergency.  At $4 a box, they are too expensive for me to use very often.  But just knowing they are in the pantry makes it easier to plan a regular lunch-to-go.

And that brings me back to Kate's request: what do I plan for lunches?  Here is a picture of some of my regular supplies:
The one I turn to most often is peanut-butter rice cake sandwiches (do not add jelly or honey to these; however nutella works well).  A close second (not shown) is a scrambled egg-and cheese quasadilla.  I also like to freeze fruit like peaches and berries when they are in season in muffin tins.  Then I store them in gallon bags, for an easy addition to some homemade yogurt (the frozen fruit keeps the yogurt cool until lunchtime).  My protein muffins are a favorite as well, but there are rarely enought leftover from breakfast to take for lunch.  I also love to bring some soup or casserole in a thermos if there is any available.  And with any lunch I add either some fresh or dried fruit, and maybe some nuts, cheese or pepperoni for an extra bit of protein if I am famished.  If it is going to be an extra-long day I might throw in some chocolate milk or pineapple juice for a pick-me-up.

There are some occasions where I need to travel for a few days and I like to bring along a meal as a "just-in-case" provision.  My favorites in those situations are Pacific's soups and ready rice, rice cakes and individual packages of peanut butter, and oatmeal with nuts/dried fruit.
As a final note I want to mention desserts.  The longer I have been gluten-free and eating healthy, the less satisfied I am with the typical M&Ms or candy bars.  So for a small bite of something sweet I take along a piece of quality dark chocolate or one of these fortune cookies.  There is something about a ridiculous fortune that tops off a meal perfectly.

Happy gluten-free eating!

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