5 Tips for Vegetarian Lunches

Arugula Salad with Romesco Potatoes | Naturally Ella

(Hey Everyone! I want you to give a warm welcome to Grace Kerfoot. Grace has studied nutrition and most recently was working as a cheesemonger. She’s also been helping me in the studio and I’m so happy to have her contributing a few posts in the coming months. I think it’s always great to have some fresh perspective- helps us get out of ruts! So without further story, here’s Grace!)

When I remember to pack a lunch, I feel so much more on my game. Instead of scavenging for lunch in the city or at work when noon arrives, the ease of just pulling my own lunch from the fridge or my bag is somehow empowering – a reward for a minimal amount of prep and planning.

Packing a lunch does not have to mean a square zip-locked sandwich in a crinkled paper bag. What’s even more rewarding is when the packed lunch is something wholesome and good – it’s worth looking forward too.

The simplest things can elevate lunch from ‘getting the job done’ to great. These are my five staples for lunch hacking that make lunch packing not only more delicious but more enjoyable.

1. Good Salt

I carry around a little container of sel gris with me to work. It adds a salt boost and a hefty crunch for toasts or soft boiled eggs. If the lunch you brought tastes like it could be just a little bit better it probably just needs a little more salt.

2. Cheese

I use cheese like a condiment. A little dab of it here or there can change everything. Not to mention, I so look forward to everything more if there is cheese involved. Fresh chevre sprinkled on a simple salad adds texture and tang, a few ribbons of shaved pecorino or ricotta salata add appealing color and brightness to grain bowls or any massaged kale salad.

3. Good quality olive oil

Few eating experiences are worse than an underdressed salad or a dry bowl of grains. Having olive oil handy, even if it’s a bottle tucked in the back of your desk drawer can be a lunch game changer.

4. Pickled Things

Fermented foods literally breath life into packed lunches. Sauerkraut in a salad, pickled carrots in a sandwich, a spoonful of miso stirred into brown rice – get creative with whatever picked things you may have in your refrigerator and you’ll probably never have a dull lunch.


While this isn’t a condiment, I love using BEES WRAP and mason jars to pack my lunches – I use less plastic and makes for a more visually appealing lunch. Pictured: these metal containers.

Bees Wrap
Made from organic cotton, sustainably sourced beeswax, organic jojoba oil, and tree resin – bees wrap is perfect for wrapping just about anything. I use it for packing up a sandwich or half an avocado, or using it as a loose lid on tupperware when all the other lids go missing.

The king of alternative tupperware, mason jars hold everything – and are easy to slid into a bag or the cupholder of your car. Fill a 16oz jar with soup and bring an 8oz jar full of fun toppings. They also work for salads. Just layer your grains, proteins, veggies, add dressing when you’re ready to eat – give it a shake and eat.


Curious where to start with exactly what to pack for lunch? Here are some recipes to get started on that hold up well being jostled to and from wherever your lunch destination may be.

Carrot Rice Noodle Bowl with Tahini-Sriracha Sauce | @naturallyella
Cucumber-Feta Quinoa Salad
Chickpea Shawarma Stuffed Pita
Overhead Shot of Chickpea Tomato Bread Salad with Arugula Pesto

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