Whether you’re working in the office, on the road, or at home, lunch is one of those meals that doesn’t get a lot of fanfare. Most of us want something quick and easy, and if it’s healthy? Well, that’s a plus. Unfortunately, a lot of quick and easy lunch options are anything BUT healthy. Enter mason jar salads = the perfectly portable healthy lunch!
When the Hubs and I decided to focus on losing weight and getting healthier, we knew we had to tackle work week lunches if we wanted to be successful. He works in an office building adjacent to a shopping mall so the food court is a real temptation for him. I, on the other hand, work from home and don’t always have time to stop and cook.
Of course, I pinned a ton of mason jar salads on Pinterest, but I’d never actually taken the time to make them.
I did love the idea of a grab and go salad that we could assemble in advance, so I jumped online and got the general idea of how to layer ingredients. I picked up some quart-sized wide-mouth mason jars and immediately set to work creating simple salads with our favorite flavors.
If you’ve been looking for a great healthy lunch idea, I’m telling you: Mason jar salads are the way to go.
5 Reasons To Love Mason Jar Salad Lunches:
- They’re convenient. When it’s 12 o’clock, your stomach is growling and you’ve had a crazy stressful morning, the last thing you want to worry about is lunch. Rather than scrounging around in the bottom of your purse for a half-eaten granola bar, wouldn’t it be nice if you could just dump a jar full of goodness into a bowl and chow down?
- They’re healthy. Mason jar salads offer a fabulous alternative to fast food or frozen entrees. Note: If you add oodles of high-fat dressing and other calorie-laden toppings, you can inadvertently transform your salad into a Big Mac in a jar. However, rest assured that there are lots of ways to build a delicious salad without using an entire day’s worth of calories!
- They’re cheaper than eating out. Okay, so if you’re dining off the dollar menu, you might get by a tad cheaper with takeout, but otherwise, brown bagging it is the way to go! We couldn’t believe how much money we saved when the hubs stopped eating out for lunch.
- They’re pretty. We eat with our eyes, and nothing says yummy like beautiful layers of colorful veggies, vibrant greens and tasty toppings nestled inside a shiny glass jar. All I can say is that you better put your name on it if it’s going into the break-room fridge because your coworkers are going to have major salad envy.
- You can make them ahead of time. Hands-down, the best part about mason jar salads is that they are good in the fridge for 3-5 days, depending on what you put in them. When we’re in the meal prep groove, we like to make several on Sunday afternoon, and we’re all set for the work week! The hour or so spent preparing them on the weekend really pays off later.
Mason jar salads really can be the ideal solution to your lunch time woes! Why not give it a try and see if it works for you? If you like Asian flavors, check out my recipe for Asian Chicken Salad in a Jar. It’s protein-packed and full of flavor!
A Few Tips:
- Use the “assembly line” method when you’re putting together your jars. Do all of the dressings, then the veggies, and so on. It takes us about an hour to do a week’s worth of salads. (Sometime more or less depending on how much we have to cook.)
- A canning funnel will keep you from making a huge mess when you assemble your salads. I actually use one that belonged to my grandmother years ago . (She was the CANNING QUEEN. I’m pretty sure she never thought I’d be canning salad.) You can find a similar one over here on Amazon.
- Not sure where to begin? Click here for a details tutorial/FAQ from Tammy over at Organize Yourself Skinny.
22 More Recipes:
4 recipes from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen:
What’s your favorite go-to lunch during the work week? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
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