5 Big-Batch Make-Ahead Lunches You'll Actually Look Forward to Eating
Coriander Chicken and Rice
This dish is inspired by the savory street cart chicken and rice whose fragrance will lure you over from a block away. Though you can enjoy this lunch at room temperature, it tastes best reheated. Rest assured, the food holds up beautifully. Because everything is so nicely seasoned, it’s all just as flavorful after 3 days. When making the recipe, be sure to get the rice going first; as it cooks, the rest of the meal will come together.
Smoky Chicken With Potato Salad and Slaw
Smoked paprika delivers grill-like flavor to spiced chicken, and creamy potato salad and tangy slaw complete the meal. We toss the undressed coleslaw mix with sugar and salt, let it stand, and rinse it; this process helps to remove some of the water from the cabbage so that the coleslaw will hold up longer without watering out.
Lemon-Dill Salmon Salad
Glazed Meatballs with Soba Noodles
The tender texture and mildly earthy flavor of soba (Japanese buckwheat noodles) make this lunch a keeper; it’s great at room temperature or warmed. You’ll find soba on the Asian foods aisle of most grocery stores (or at Amazon), but you can substitute whole-wheat spaghetti in a pinch. A little chile heat punches up the flavor in the glaze, but the standout is toasted sesame oil (also found on the Asian foods aisle), with its heady, fragrant nuttiness.
Greek Chickpea Salad
Crunchy, sturdy romaine lettuce holds up well as the base for this salad. The flavors are bright, fresh, briny, and herby—even after 3 or 4 days. Be sure the lettuce is well-dried before assembling the salads; wet leaves tend to sog out quickly. For a heartier salad, you can add 4 ounces of cooked chicken breast or shrimp; the chicken will add 187 calories and 35g protein, and the shrimp will contribute 135 calories and 26g protein.