Return to Work: 10 Quick and Healthy Meal Prep Ideas

September 22, 2021

Are you returning to work more regularly each week and struggling to decide what to bring for lunch? Spending your evenings staring into your fridge and wondering how to use your leftover vegetables? Our brand new Wellbeing Wednesdays campaign aims to tackle the challenges in maintaining a healthy lifestyle during the work week with easy and quick solutions covering the areas of exercise, mental wellbeing, or today’s topic: nutrition.

In 2019, an estimated 2 billion people in the world did not have regular access to safe, nutritious and sufficient food (UN, 2021). As a medical charity, we often come across people who not only lack access to healthcare, but access to nutritious food. In many cases, their illnesses are caused by the inadequate access to the food they need to survive. Hence, this week’s theme surrounds the topic of healthy eating and nutrition-rich food –a privilege not everyone can afford. 

As a part of our healthcare projects, we also provide life-saving healthy meals to vulnerable patients unable to afford a meal whilst in hospital. £15 can provide hot and nutritious meals for 1 week to the most vulnerable, poverty-stricken patients.

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With COVID-19 restrictions slowly easing, and the gradual opening of offices and workplaces meaning less time available to meal prep, juggling the desire to eat healthily whilst also managing commute times, meetings, and a never-ending itinerary of house work, means everything just got more challenging. But worry not, this week’s Wellbeing Wednesday is all about inspiring you with delicious, quick and healthy meals that can all be made between 20 to 45mins. 

1. Veggie Sushi

sushi

This is way easier than you think! Grab your shopping bags and visit your nearest asian shop (or even your local supermarket will do the trick) and get some sushi rice and nori sheets alongside your favourite vegetables, as well as some rice vinegar. All you need to do is cook the sushi rice according to instructions, lay your nori sheet flat, spread out the rice and assemble your cut vegetables vertically with some sriracha mayo, then roll with your hands, cut up into bite sized slices and you’re done!

2. Falafel Wrap

falafel

This dish requires pre-made falafels but alternatively, you can make a fresh batch of falafels (just blender tinned/soaked chickpeas, onion, spices of your choice [cumin and paprika are a must] and fresh herbs) and store it in the freezer for an even quicker lunch for another time. The next step would be to either bake or air fry your falafels, then simply add to a tortilla wrap/khubz/roti with your favourite mediterranean vegetables/salad and enjoy. 

Tip: pack everything separately, including your yoghurt or desired sauces just before you eat the wrap to avoid your food going soggy before it’s lunch time! 

3. Burrito Bowl

burrito bowl

Use any of your leftover rice, quinoa or even pre-made rice and add in your favourite vegetables and/or your choice of beans. Do not forget to top with some sour cream, pickled onions and guacamole to create a scrumptious bowl of healthy, yet fulfilling goodness. 

4. Summer Rolls

Summer RollsOnce again, make a trip to your nearest asian store or an online shop to buy some rice paper. To make, just dip the rice paper in water (for a few seconds only) and assemble your favourite sliced vegetables vertically alongside your cooked (and spiced) protein such as tofu, chicken or even prawns, as well as cooked vermicelli noodles (optional) and roll. The star member of this dish is the peanut dipping sauce –which is usually just peanut butter, rice vinegar, salt, chilli flakes and soy sauce mixed well together. 

5. Pasta Salad

pasta saladIf you’re extremely pressed for time, this pasta recipe is super quick and easy. Just boil your pasta, toss in some vegetables/salad and season with some olive oil, salt, pepper and chilli flakes. 

6. Chickpea Wrap

Chickpea wrapRoast your chickpeas and choice of vegetables in the oven/air fryer with your favourite spices and sauces, and pair with a tortilla wrap/khubz/roti of your choice. Season with black pepper/chilli flakes and a sauce of your choice. 

7. Quinoa Buddha Bowl

Quinoa Buddha BowlA bowl of cooked quinoa paired with your favourite vegetables and beans (such as spiced and roasted chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans etc), as well as a dressing of your choice might exactly be what you need to get through the rest of your work day.

8. Veggie Burger

burger You may want to make your own bean burger patty from scratch but this is for those with less time or energy to create a mid-week work lunch. Rush to the freezer section of your closest supermarket and grab some veggie burger patties, then cook and pair with some burger buns alongside the classic salad items and a sauce of choice. If you are trying to reduce your carb intake, why not omit the burger buns and convert this dish into a burger salad!

9. Veggie stir-fry 

stir fryNothing beats the combination of noodles (of any choice) and stir-fried vegetables with a dash of soy sauce, a pinch of brown sugar and chilli flakes to rejuvenate your energy and mood on a hectic work day. What better way to satisfy your hunger and get you through the rest of your meetings for the day? 

10. Pita Pocket 

pita pocketToast a pita bread, cut it open and add whatever cooked/uncooked vegetables, proteins and dressing you like. For this dish, the pita bread is your canvas – use up all those leftover items in your fridge that have been sitting there for too long and make a delicious lunch while you’re at it. 

We hope you have enjoyed reading through our inspiring meal ideas that can keep you going even on a long work day. Importantly, we hope that they serve as a reminder that there are many others who lack access to basic nutrition, and you can support a vulnerable patient to access a meal in hospital when they cannot afford to do so by donating to Doctors Worldwide. £15 can provide hot and nutritious meals for 1 week to the most vulnerable, poverty-stricken patients.

DONATE NOW

Make sure to share this article with your friends and family, follow us on social media (twitter, facebook, instagram, linkedin) and tag us if you make any of these dishes! Also, make sure to subscribe to our mailing list below for regular updates and campaigns! 

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