BY MANDY SACHER
Maybe it’s the day before your “big shop”, or money has been tight, or perhaps everyone has just locust through all the food again. Here’s what to do when there’s nothing for the lunchboxes.
PICK OF THE PANTRY
If the fridge is looking a bit bare, supplement with items from your cupboards. Sultanas, freshly popped corn, a simple pasta dish with olives, tinned tomatoes and a sprinkle of cheese will go a long way to filling that lunch box. For sandwiches, get creative and try some new combinations with whatever you have on hand, such as cheese and grated carrot, mashed egg with herbs, apple and raisins, canned tuna with cream cheese, or chicken, mayo and celery.
If like Old Mother Hubbard, your cupboards are really bare, make a pit-stop to your local supermarket and stock up on some healthy snacks for a last-minute lunch.
Some of our favourites store-bought breads include Sonoma sourdough, Bill’s Organic bread and Ancient Grains. When in doubt, pick grainy bread with the least amount of ingredients on the wrapper. For crackers, wraps and crispbreads, we love Orgran Chia Crispibread, unflavoured mixed grain rice cakes, Fine Fettle Flats and Mountain bread wraps. Add some tahini, hummous or Nimbin Natural cheese slices for a hearty, tasty lunch, then pop in some fruit and yoghurt and you’re done
In future, for days when the fresh food has run out, it pays to have a well-stocked pantry so you can whip up some tasty and healthy last-minute options. Try these basic essentials: tinned tuna, tomatoes, olives and pasta; rice and nori sheets for homemade sushi – just add veg); popcorn, healthy crackers, plain unflavoured rice cakes and freeze-dried fruit for snacks. Also, having an abundance of wholemeal spelt flour, eggs and oil on hand means you can always throw together sweet or savoury muffins if time permits.
Another way to ensure there’s always something for lunch is to make extra at night and set it aside. Tuna Pasta, Spaghetti Bolognese, Vegetable Soup and Chicken Schnitzel all keep well, and will save you some extra minutes in the morning. Bon appetit!
Mandy Sacher is a certified Paediatric Nutritionist and SOS Feeding Consultant. Find out more about Mandy HERE