Remember that time I said I’m super busy and using my crockpot all the time? Well, the only problem with the crockpot is that you can’t make things that are crunchy in it. And as much as I love a good soup, sometimes I just need to crunch.
With my busy schedule, I often have to leave the apartment in the morning with my lunch, dinner, and snacks packed up for the day. The good thing is, by making my food decisions for the day before, I can make sure I make healthy choices. The bad thing is when I don’t properly prepare my food for the day, I end up not having enough food or getting unsatisfying take out for one or more meals.
My solution has been to make a large amount of salad one night and bring it for lunch for the next 2-3 days (or however long it lasts). I’ve noticed that by having a big, healthy, loaded salad for lunch, I can keep myself feeling healthy and satisfied throughout the day at work, without that mid-afternoon crash (though a cup of coffee doesn’t hurt, either). I like large salads with tons of crunchy veggie goodness, some protein, and of course, big flavor.
This salad is my go to for the week. It’s got a healthy dose of protein, a whole lot of crunch, tons of vegetables, and a nice touch of tang and spice. Plus, it has avocado, and anything with avocado is good in my book. Since I’m packing this for lunch, I keep the tortilla chips in a plastic baggie until I’m ready to eat to keep them nice and crunchy. The biggest problem with packing something this delicious for lunch is that I end up counting down the minutes until it’s socially acceptable for me to eat it!
2 heads of iceberg lettuce, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 ripe avocado, diced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 red onion, diced
1 bell pepper (color of your choice), chopped
2 cups cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups cooked corn, either frozen and thawed or canned and rinsed
2 cups roughly crumbled tortilla or corn chips (I used Trader Joe’s Soy and Flaxseed Tortilla Chips)
1 tablespoon chili powder (feel free to substitute something spicier in there)
1 tablespoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Juice of one lime
2 teaspoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup shredded cheese of choice (I used Daiya Cheddar Style Shreds)
1. In a small bowl or container, combine the lime juice, olive oil, garlic powder, chili powder, and cumin. Mix well to combine, taste for salt and pepper, then set aside.
2. Chop the lettuce into bite size pieces, halve the cherry tomatoes, chop the avocado and the pepper, and dice the onion. Toss them all together in a large bowl along with the corn, black beans, and cheese of your choice.
3. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat everything.
4. Add the crushed tortilla chips just before serving, and toss to combine. Serve cold or room temperature.