Brown Bag Resolution

By AFM – January 1, 2014


When food looks colorful and is prepared with care, it’s simply more enjoyable. But when in a rush, food prep often takes a backseat to presentation. Even more often, careful preparation and food prep fall victim to the ease of grab-and-go fast food, especially when it comes to workweek lunches. It’s easier to stick to a healthy diet resolution when what you eat is as good as it looks and the execution is almost effortless.

Wheatsville Food Co-Op has provided some tried-and-true lunch suggestions with an emphasis on fresh produce and economical bulk bin shopping. All that’s left for you to do is to put this brown bag plan into practice.

Grocery List (quantities based on 1-2 people)

Bulk Department (quantities are approximations)

  • 1-1 1/2 cups brown rice
  • 1-2 cups dried fruit—unsweetened mango, date rolls, Turkish apricots, fruit/nut trail mix
  • 2-3 ounces nuts (e.g., walnuts, almonds, cashews)


  • 1 bag baby carrots
  • 1 bunch celery
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 head broccoli
  • 1 bag salad greens
  • 1 watermelon radish
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 container cherry tomatoes
  • 1 bag fresh green beans
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 1 package mushrooms


  • 1 heat-and-eat meal (e.g., Amy’s soup, Tasty Bites, Dr. McDougall’s Quinoa Salad)
  • 1 box crackers
  • 1 container hummus
  • 1 jar tomato sauce
  • 1 bag organic whole black beans
  • 1 jar salad dressing
  • 1 box pasta of choice (optional)
  • 1 package tempeh or turkey (optional)


  • 1 pizza dough from Deli Grab & Go
  • 1 package cheese—Parmesan, feta, chèvre, Daiya
  • wide-mouth jar with lid
  • containers for packaging food

Work Week Lunch Menu

Salad-JarDay 1: Salad in a Jar

Take a wide-mouth glass canning jar and pour in salad dressing.
Add your choice of veggies, heaviest to lightest (salad greens go in last).
Place the top on the jar; shake vigorously (a good way to work in a little cardio!).
Bulk up your salad with an avocado, nuts, cubed turkey, pasta, or sautéed tempeh.

Veggie-DippersDay 2: Garden Dippers

Cut up your choice of veggies, such as broccoli, baby carrots, celery, green beans, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and peeled asparagus. We love the way a crisp, peppery watermelon radish bursts into hot pink stars.
Dip veggies and crackers into your favorite hummus.


Rice-and-BeansDay 3: Organic Brown Rice & Black Beans

Cook brown rice and black beans according to packaging directions. (Note: beans may need to be soaked.)
Combine, and then spice up with cheese, avocado, and salsa.


pizza-doughDay 4: Pizza D’OH!

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Roll out dough and top with 1-2 tablespoons of tomato sauce.
Top with about 1 cup of veggies (leftovers from veggie cup are perfect) and 1/2 cup of cheese.
Bake for 10-20 minutes.

Desk-DashDay 5: Desk Dash
While it would be nice to pack a well-balanced meal each day, reality can have other plans.

Tuck an easy heat-and-eat meal in your desk drawer or office refrigerator. Amy’s Soup, Tasty Bites, or Dr. McDougall’s Hot Quinoa Salad are some of our favorite quick go-to meals.
For your dessert stash, try dried, unsweetened mango, date rolls, Turkish apricots, or a trail mix blend.



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