Thursday, June 27, 2013

Non-Perishable Lunch Ideas

Hi all!  I'm still alive, just as busy as ever!  Caden and Leo are growing up quickly (too quickly).

But, lately I've hit a conundrum, and I wanted to share what I've come up with!  This will be super duper handy for my food allergic readers :).

Back-story: I am taking Caden (alone) to Williamsburg for a 2-3 day trip.  We are also visiting Luray Caverns soon, too.  The trouble with touristy areas is that they don't have much in the way of "national food chains".  Under normal circumstances, I would find that a good thing!  The more family businesses, the better :).  But for those of us with food allergies, it does add a little bit of uncertainty about what to eat!!

Caden's also starting cub scouts in the Fall, so this was actually good practice for those long camping trips :).

The conundrum: Feeding ourselves with no fridge, know, amenities!  Therefore, nonperishable (but healthy) food ideas.  Here's what I've come up with.

Picture from Brian Green's Blog

Who says you can't eat snacks for lunch?  You don't have to have a square meal the way you envision every meal.  Lunch doesn't need to be a sandwich, so let go of convention and you'll be better off :).  Here are some great snacking foods that you could substitute for the perishable counterparts!

  • Beef Jerky- high in protein, delicious, and you could carry this for months on a backpacking trip.  There's a reason why jerky was a prime food source in the Hunger Games books!  Protein packs a huge calorie punch, and when you are walking (hiking, climbing, etc.) this is a great way to replenish your protein!
  • Dried fruit- if you get them organically, they pack the same goodness punch as the fresh versions!  They don't do anything to the fruit other than dry it out :).
  • Dried Veggies- you can find these, but not as readily.  Sometimes, you can find them in chip form, too.  A great brand I suggest is Terra Chips.
  • Crackers and cheese- if its for lunch in 6 hours or so and you can pack a small icepack, then those string cheeses would be great!  They are made for lunchboxes, therefore typically made out of harder cheeses (like cheddar) that don't go bad as quickly.
  • Tuna and chicken cans- I know, gross sounding, but in a pinch its great!  I would be sure to get the cans that DO NOT require a can opener.  Take along some bread and you have a presto! Sandwich :).
  • Built-in-container-foods: Avacados are one of the best examples of this!  Find foods that contain themselves!  Avacados are fantastic because of how they are assembled.  The thick outer"shell" helps keep the internal goodness :). Great with chips (a on-the-go guacamole).  The great thing is that it comes with its own "bowl" that you toss when you are done :).  It is a BYOK (bring your own knife) food though!
  • Any other snacks.  You still need your grains, and of course this is the easy food group to pack!  Cheese crackers are even better because they pack in a little more protein punch!!!
  • Nuts/Seeds- I know, suggesting this on a "food allergic" blog sounds preposterous!  But not all people suffering from food restrictions are allergic to nuts!  So, I'll suggest it anyway!  Make your own trailmix with your favorite seeds or nuts!  Mix in your dried fruit and veggies.  MMMM!
  • Leads me to: protein bars.  If you can have them (I really can't), go for it!
And a tip I kept seeing while doing my research.  Baggies!  Use them!  You don't want to share your food with lovely insects :).
So, there you have it!  Happy Camping, Hiking, Visiting Landmarks, ALL!

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