Thinking up new ways to keep your lunches quick, yet interesting, can be a headache. Add being hungry to the equation and it's easy to see why so many people eat fast food. However, there are many recipes you can whip up for lunch that taste better, cost less and are much healthier than drive-thru meals.
A chef's salad is any salad that combines vegetables, meat and cheese. Use a bag of tossed salad as a base to keep things simple. Slice some turkey lunch meat, ham lunch meat and cheddar cheese. Throw the meat, cheese and tossed salad together in a bowl. Drizzle with your favorite salad dressing, and serve the salad with a chunk of crusty bread. Dress the salad up with any topping, such as sunflower seeds, cherry tomatoes, sliced boiled egg, seasoned croutons and crumbled bacon.
Dress up a plain can of chili to turn it from a boring standby into a flavorful lunch. Pour the chili into a large bowl and microwave it until it is thoroughly heated. Stir the chili and cover the top with at least a 1-inch layer of crushed saltine crackers. Sprinkle the crackers generously with shredded cheddar cheese. Place the bowl back in the microwave for 20 seconds, or until the cheese melts. Let the meal cool for a minute and dig in.
Forget about boring meat-and-cheese-only sandwiches; create your own deli-style lunch in minutes. Lightly smear a piece of bread with mayonnaise and spicy-brown mustard. Add pastrami, turkey pastrami or smoked turkey lunch meat to the bread. Cover the meat with slices of Swiss cheese, red onion, tomato, cucumber and iceberg lettuce. Sprinkle the sandwich with sunflower seeds, add the second piece of bread, cut the sandwich into two pieces and serve it with a dill pickle. Make the sandwich vegetarian by skipping the meat and adding slices of avocado instead.
Chicken Salad Pocket
A can of chicken-breast meat is as handy as tuna when it comes to preparing a quick lunch. Mix mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, diced onion and diced celery with the chicken. Tuck a little lettuce inside the open half of a pita pocket. Spoon the chicken salad into the pocket, and lunch is ready. Mix a little yellow curry powder into the mayonnaise to give the salad a Middle Eastern flavor. Mix pickle relish into the mayonnaise to give the salad a sweet and tangy taste.
Chicken Cheese Quesadilla
Two flour tortillas replace the bread in this Southwest lunch recipe. Mix a can of chicken, a little sour cream and salsa in a bowl. Smear the mixture over a large flour tortilla and sprinkle ample shredded cheddar cheese over top. Place the second tortilla over the cheese. Spray a large pan with nonstick cooking spray and place it over medium heat. Carefully add the quesadilla to the hot pan and cook it until it is golden, flipping it once. Slide the quesadilla onto a plate, cut it into sections and serve it with salsa.
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