Creative Meals to Take to Work

While working at your summer job it can be hard to know what to eat on your lunch break. Sometimes depending on the shift, breaks can be as short as fifteen minutes! Fifteen minutes is hardly enough time to leave and find food. If you’re like me, you don’t want to pack a quick pouch of pop tarts or even chips because you’re worried about nutrition. I’ve discovered how to turn break time into a quick nutritional pick me up, here’s how to.

The first step is to bring a bottle of water from home. There is no use in spending your hard earned cash in a vending machine for a sugary pop or energy drink.  Bringing a bottle of water isn’t only free; it’ll keep you hydrated and healthy on the job. Next, pack fresh foods that you cannot find in a package! This might take you waking up five minutes earlier in order to prepare your food, but you will be saving time and money when your break arrives. I always get up early and prepare my break food while I’m in the kitchen for breakfast.

A great thing to make fresh and quick is a sandwich. Make sure you keep bread, condiments, and fresh veggies in your fridge! My sandwiches usually consist of wheat bread, turkey, cheese, fresh lettuce, onion, pickles, and occasionally a little bit of  mustard. If you aren’t into sandwiches try creating a salad to go! Find some tub-o-ware, and begin the process! I usually combine lettuce and spinage in mine. Include your favorite dressing on the side to avoid soggy salad later. Add shredded cheeses, onion, tomato, peppers, and whatever else you enjoy! This is a great a fast option for a healthy main course.

When it comes to side dishes there are many options. Throw in your favorite yogurt and a spoon; include a side of fresh strawberries or grapes as well because they are easy to pack. You might also like to throw in an apple or banana for fruit; they are also very easy to pack quickly. If you feel the need for more sustenance, try adding one of your favorite granola bars as well. Try avoiding potato chips, but it you want a healthy substitute, use pretzels, animal crackers, or a couple graham crackers. Each of these substitutes provides a delicious flavor and still has the crunch effect. All of them are also extremely low in fat.

In conclusion, there are many ways to save money and eat right quickly while on the job. All it takes is a little preparation to enjoy a meal straight from your kitchen. You’ll love the feeling of eating healthy and you’ll be surprised at your energy levels throughout the day because of your good nutrition choices. Give it a try and feel the difference!

Easy Dorm Room Recipies

Many of us have been in the unfortunate situation where we must decide between spending the last $10 on food or beer. Should I buy a six-pack and eat the week old Chinese leftovers? Or should I order a pizza and stay at the dorm tonight? These are decisions that can be avoided with a weekly trip to the grocery store and a microwave. In 5 minutes or less you can have a tasty meal, and still have enough money left over for booze. Try these suggestions:

Micro Nachos

Ingredients- Tortilla chips, shredded mild cheddar cheese (or that mozzarella that’s been in your mini fridge all month, any cheese will work). Optional: sour cream, lettuce, tomatoes.

Prep time: < 5 minutes

Serves: 1-2

Directions: Place tortilla chips on a microwave safe plate, spread out chips to ensure equal cheesiness. Cover with 1 cup or more of shredded cheese, and spread out to ensure equal cheesy deliciousness. If your grocery budget allows, add lettuce and tomatoes. Microwave for 40 seconds or until cheese is melted. Add sour cream after cooking.

To take these to the next level, add ¼ pound (precooked) smoked beef sausage and ¼ cup barbeque sauce before cooking.

Bacon Macaroni

Ingredients- EasyMac©, bacon.

Prep time: 5-10 minutes

Serves: 1


Directions: Place 2 paper towels on a plate, add 3 to 5 strips of bacon, and cover with 2 more paper towels. Microwave 1 minute for each strip of bacon. Microwave macaroni according to directions. Cut bacon into small pieces and add to macaroni. Add salt and pepper if desired.


Ingredients: Hersheys© chocolate, graham crackers, large marshmallows.

Prep time: < 5 minutes

Serves: 1


Directions: Place 2 graham crackers on a microwave safe plate, with 4 marshmallows on top of each. Microwave for 20 seconds. Add chocolate to top (hot marshmallows will melt chocolate).

For added taste, put peanut butter on graham crackers before cooking.

Scrambled Eggs and Bacon

Ingredients: Large eggs, bacon, cheese (optional).

Prep time: 5-10 minutes

Serves 1-2


Directions: Place 2 paper towels on a plate, add 3 to 5 strips of bacon, and cover with 2 more paper towels. Microwave 1 minute for each strip of bacon. Crack eggs, discard shells, and place in a microwave safe cup. Add 1 tablespoon of milk (or 2 tablespoons for fluffier eggs) and stir for 30 seconds. Cover with a paper towel and microwave for 1 to 1 ½ minutes. Stir again and add cheese if you’d like. Add salt and pepper if desired.

Banana Nut Oatmeal

Ingredients: 1 banana, 1 oatmeal packet, milk, honey, walnuts (optional).

Prep time: < 5 minutes

Serves: 1


Directions: Add oatmeal, ½ cup milk, 2 tablespoons walnuts (optional), 3 tablespoons honey, stir, then add peeled banana into a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes. Mash banana after cooking and stir again.

Cheesy Baked Potato

Ingredients: 1 russet potato, shredded cheddar cheese (mild or sharp), butter or margarine, sour cream (optional)

Prep time: 12 minutes

Serves: 1

Directions: Clean potato with hot water, poke with fork several times. Place in microwave on microwave safe plate for 5 minutes. Be careful, potato will be extremely hot. Turn potato over and cook for approximately 4-5 more minutes or until soft. Cut potato in half (again potato will be very hot) and mash inside of potato with a fork. Add 1-2 tablespoons of butter or margarine and spread. Add ¼ cup shredded cheese, and season with salt and pepper. Put back in microwave for 45 seconds or until cheese is melted. Add sour cream if desired.

Hot Diggity Dogs

Ingredients: Hot dogs, sliced American cheese, flour tortillas.

Prep time: < 5 minutes

Serves: 1


Directions: Wrap up hot dogs in paper towel, microwave for 20 seconds. Be careful dogs will be hot (they’re not called cold dogs), take dogs out of microwave. Place 1 cheese slice on each tortilla, put dogs on top and roll up tortillas. Microwave for an additional 10 or 15 seconds or until cheese is melted.

Tuna Mac and Cheese

Ingredients: EasyMac©, 1 can solid white albacore.

Prep Time: < 5 minutes

Serves: 1-2


Directions: Add water to fill line and cook EasyMac© according to directions on package. Add tuna and stir for 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper if desired.

Chicken Parmesan Sammy

Ingredients: Frozen chicken nuggets, tomato sauce, bread or hamburger bun, mozzarella cheese slices, Parmesan cheese.

Prep time: 5 minutes

Serves: 1


Directions: Cook chicken nuggets according to directions on package. Spread 1 tablespoon tomato sauce on each side of bread. Cut 1 slice of mozzarella cheese in half, placing 1 piece on top of tomato sauce on each side of bread. Place nuggets on top of bread and add 1 tablespoon of parmesan cheese. Put bread together and microwave for an additional 5 seconds.

Chicken Flavored Popcorn

Ingredients: Unsalted popcorn (not butter popcorn), Ramen© noodles (chicken flavored preferably, but any flavor will work)

Prep time: <5 minutes

Serves: 1-2

Directions: Pop corn in microwave. When popcorn is popped, open top and add Ramen© Noodles flavor packet (throw away noodles) and shake for 2 or 3  minutes.


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