Packing a Lunch without Making a Mess
In my last post about how to survive as a broke college vegan I mentioned saving money by stashing healthy snacks. But there are definitely some foods that travel better than others. Packing a college-style backpack lunch is all about strategy, and I´m here to tell you how to play the game.
- Pack according to how long you´ll be out. I would usually back a 200 calorie snack for every 3 hours I would be out. If you know you´ll be missing lunch then pack food that´s a little more substantial than carrot sticks.
- Avoid messes in advance. The best foods are the one´s that will stay pretty much in tact throughout your day. Foods like apples, carrot sticks, and almonds are a good choice.
Foods to Avoid:
-Plums and other soft skinned juicy fruits
-Bananas (unless you´re eating on your walk)
-Foods with thin sauces
-Oily food (super gross)
- Don´t stink up the classroom. Garlic is one of the tastiest flavors but it´s best not to eat it in class. Offensive smells are the worst especially when you´re not the one enjoying them.
- Heat sensitive foods are a bummer. Packing food that needs to either be hot or cold are difficult especially when you aren´t sure when you´ll be back home. Try packing foods that are good at room temperature.
- Get a reusable sandwich bag. (Photo Above) I have a small and large snack taxi bag and I love them! They´re an $8 investment but well worth the money. You never have to buy plastic sandwich bags again, you can put them through the dishwasher or washing machine, and they are pretty good at keeping even messy foods from spilling all over your bag. Not to mention they´re good for the environment. The sandwich size bag can fit big foods too. Often times the sandwich bags leave enough room for 2 or 3 snacks so you can pack both your apple slices and your carrot sticks in 1 bag.
- Re-use old bags. If you don´t have a snack taxi use old shopping bags for your lunch. Save old produce bags and use them as sandwich bags or use the paper bag from baguettes for sandwiches.
- Bring necessary cutlery and napkins. Think ahead to what you´re going to need and how you will bring it back home. Maybe you brought a metal fork but now you have to carry it around for 8 hours without washing it. Try to think about inconveniences before they happen and work around them.
- Dips can be tamed. Don´t think you can´t bring hummus just because it´s inconvenient. Packing a small teacup sized tupperware for dips like hummus, peanut butter, etc. is an easy way to bring those foods. Just be careful not to bring dips that are too watery or you could have a mess on your hands.
- Bring quiet foods. How much do you hate the guy with potato chips in a quiet room? Don´t be that guy. Both your food and your containers make noise. Think ahead.
- Pack the night before. You know you´ll be late if you have to make a whole lunch that morning. At least I know I will. Make sure to pack the night before to reduce stress.
Good Packing Foods:
- PB&Banana Sandwiches
- Vegan ¨Yogurt¨
- Dried Fruit