You’re sitting at your desk, trying to get away with being on Pinterest for the last three hours when it hits: the hunger pain that will not be satisfied with gulping down water or praying to the diet gods. But you shouldn’t be scrounging for a chocolate bar, heading to the cafeteria for a sodium-laden soup, or trekking to the super gross microwave in the break room to heat up mysterious leftovers.
First, you need to start keeping the following in your desk drawer:
- a nice plate and silverware (see: not plastic)
- assorted food “enhancers” like a legit pepper grinder (nope, not kidding)
- hot sauce (like GOOD shit; not the packets)
- slivered almonds (they work on like, everything)
- sun-dried tomatoes for salads (the kind not packed in oil, duh)
- dried fruit like cranberries or blueberries (do NOT buy the ones full of sugar and processed shit)
Having an office lunch that feels like a REAL meal will help you feel more satisfied later. That way, when you see that super sad 40-year-old digging around for her daily Snickers bar, you can sit and judge. Someone help her.
Second, prep some things for the week. You need an easy grab when your hair is doing that weird thing again and you leave 20 minutes later than you were supposed to. Here are a few super simple “recipes” you won't feel guilty about eating at your desk. By the way, they work hot or cold, so you can definitely avoid whoever put exploding pasta in the microwave. What is happening to the world?
1. Quinoa with mango “salsa”:
This is one of those things you can make ahead on Sunday night and have containers ready to go each morning. Just combine cooked quinoa (the red variety is better for this recipe), diced red onion, halved yellow and red grape tomatoes, diced mango, diced cucumber, about a handful of chopped cilantro, salt and cracked black pepper to taste. Once you mix everything together, make a basic “dressing” of lime juice and extra virgin olive oil. Dress the “salad” and let sit overnight so the flavors can hook up and shit.
2. Glass noodles and chicken salad:
I originally saw this recipe on some nice girl/wife/omgz my kids are my life blog, but obviously, I've improved it. Combine cooked chicken (so, I boiled chicken, which gets all the fat off) with a handful of fresh cilantro, mint, grated carrots, “cooked” cellophane noodles, slivered shallots, and chopped red bell pepper. You can make a lot of this or a little, so the ratios are kind of up to you.
In a separate bowl, combine 2 tbsps lime juice, 2 tsps sambel oelek (ground fresh chile paste that has that same bright green top as the Sriracha bottle), 1 tsp sugar, 1 tbsp soy or teriyaki sauce, and 2 tbsps rice vinegar. Shake or whisk your vinaigrette together then drizzle it over your noodle concoction. You can definitely make this overnight – just wait until the morning of to put the vinaigrette on the salad. This works warm, cold, or hot. Also, throw some chopped salted peanuts on top for crunch. You can even eat it with chopsticks at your desk! So adorable.
3. Radish and butter open-faced sandwich:
This sounds stupidly simple, but it is oh-so-French and, therefore, classy. You can slice radishes (which, by the way, are really good for you in terms of keeping you full and making you skinny) ahead of time, then have them ready to grab in the morning. Slather some butter on GOOD bread, as in farmers market/fresh baked bougie shit, then layer on your radishes. Double points if you top with fresh cracked black pepper.
You can even make a light salad with lemon juice and black Hawaiian salt on the side. Remember, if you're going to eat carbs, you need to eat them early in the day. Why? That way your body will have more time to like, burn all of them up. As far as the butter is concerned, it isn't THAT bad as long as you've been good the rest of the day. I mean, do you think betches in Europe have stopped eating bread and butter? No. They just eat fresh baked/churned/handmade shit.
Cheers to the day we all either marry pros and don't have to do work OR work from home and hire a live-in French chef.