Five tasty lunches for busy teachers

Sarah Salmon

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Find yourself torn between glaring and lovingly drooling over your colleagues’ delicious delight of a lunch box?

Term-time, especially around Christmas is busy, busy, busy with you spinning different plates at different times with not enough hands.

With papers needing grading, lesson plans to be finished and Christmas activities to be organised, it’s no wonder that the first plate to slip and crash is your healthy diet! You’re not alone when those freshly prepared avocado sarnies and fruit salad mixes become Tesco’s finest lasagne on 2 for 1.

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It’s no secret that what we put into our bodies directly affects our ability to keep in tip-top condition. From improving brain function, physical health and mood, what you pack in your lunchbox holds the power and potential of how your day will transpire. Ultimately you are down to two choices: either you can munch and be left feeling like a warmed up sloth or you can nourish your belly and have the energy, positivity and reactivity you often idle in your students!

Slaving away in the kitchen is the last thing you want to be doing at the end of one of “those” days.

We understand that you’re busy which is why we’ve put together a lunchbox munchbox kit of healthy go-to lunch ideas that are as convenient as heating up yesterday’s purchased lasagne.

Let’s get stuck in!

1. Ramen in a jar

Whilst I’m sure we’re all dreaming of a far-flung getaway in the sun, there’s no reason you can’t bring the tastes of afar by treating your taste buds with a Japanese-inspired ramen dish. With noodles as your base, you can pack in any old additions to pad out the goods!

The main event

  • Cooked noodles
  • A handful of frozen veg (e.g. peas, sweetcorn, carrots)
  • Chopped up protein (e.g. chopped chicken, beef, tofu or even hard-boiled egg)
  • A sauce of some sort (e.g. soy sauce, bouillon paste, coconut milk, sweet chilli sauce)

Pack the noodles into the jar and layer up your “fillers” to pad out the dish.  You can then add any fresh toppings like a handful of parsley, bean sprouts or chopped spring onion. Pop a sauce into a separate container that you can pour into the jar when you’re ready to eat and voila!

Tasty Treat

  • Greek yogurt with honey and chopped melon

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2. Protein buddha bowl

The wonderful thing about this dish is that it requires you to chuck a little bit of everything into a bowl and voila, you have yourself a tasty and healthy nutrition kick without much work!


The main event

  • Start with a base of wholegrain rice, quinoa or spelt
  • Mix in an array of cooked, roasted or raw veggies (e.g. cooked butternut squash, spinach, courgettes, aubergine)
  • Toss in a few chickpeas (either plain or slightly roasted in paprika)
  • Finish with a quick dressing made from tahini, lemon juice, maple syrup and hot water.

Tasty treat
  • Chopped fruit salad + nut mix

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3.
Easy naan pizza


Let’s face it, some days just call for pizza, right? You can pick up all your ingredients and prep this beauty in the staff kitchen in as little as 5 minutes, pop it in the microwave to heat up and you’re good to go!

The main event
  • A naan of your choice
  • Spread on a base sauce (e.g. tomato passata, BBQ, pesto)
  • Chuck on your toppings (e.g. sliced meat, vegetable assortments)
  • Finish with a sprinkling of cheese

Tasty treat
  • Yogurt bowl with chopped fruit and granola

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4.
Pasta on the go

Being on your feet all day does give you the perfect excuse to carb-load to the max...extra handy as the Christmas selection biscuit boxes are out in abundance! A pasta salad gives you a fix of all the key food groups in one with minimal prep– easy peasy!

The main event

  • Cooked pasta
  • A handful of veg of your choice (e.g. sweetcorn, spinach, peas)
  • A source of protein (shredded chicken, tuna, quorn pieces, nuts)
  • A jar of passata + handful of mixed herbs
  • A sprinkling of melted cheese for that extra crunch

Tasty treat
  • Chopped apple + pot of peanut butter as a dessert

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5.
Quick chicken gyros


Tasty, quick, full of healthy nourishment and enough to keep your energy levels steady throughout the afternoon, chicken gyros are a go-to winner!

The main event

  • Flatbread pocket
  • Add some sliced herby chicken (leftovers from the night before work great!)
  • Layer in some chopped tomatoes and cucumber
  • Add in a sauce to bring it together like a cucumber dill yogurt.

Tasty Treat

  • Baked pop chips/ pitta crisps
  • Chocolate bar (…it’s a Friday!)

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About our Community Expert

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Sarah Salmon

Digital Marketing Executive

With a background in social media management and editorial writing for jewellery and gemological education, Sarah is the Digital Marketing Executive at Opogo.

Sarah has extensive experience in facilitating the sourcing of industry research, editing copy, writing web content and utilising social media to secure an ever-growing social audience.

Sarah is the voice of Opogo across all our social channels.

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