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What's for lunch?

People often ask me what I give my kids for packed lunches. When I tell them I give them a salad, I get looks of surprise: "Do they really eat that?" and "How do you have the time each morning?", so today I thought I'd give you some insider info on how I prepare healthy packed lunches every day whilst staying sane!

The key thing is preparation. On Monday morning I boil up enough quinoa or barley to last a few days. This grain forms the basis of the salad. This week I also boiled some puy lentils, which I used as the protein. You can also used tinned chickpeas, tuna or hard-boiled egg - all great sources of protein. I grate enough courgette or carrot for two days, and keep it in the fridge. Then I just chop up some tomatoes, cucumber and pepper and add it to the pot.

Here, you can see that I had some leftover broccoli from supper the night before and added tuna, chickpeas and pumpkin seeds to the usual vegetables.

"But aren't you hungry just eating salad for lunch?"

If your salad is just vegetables, then you probably will be hungry a couple of hours later. The important thing here is to include complex carbohydrates (whole-grains or root vegetables) and protein with the vegetables - it helps keep you satisfied all afternoon. Just ask my 14 year old son - he is nearly 6 foot, cycles 4 miles each way to school and loves his lunchtime salad!

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