Packing a Lunch for the Office 101

When I moved to Chicago in September 2021, I wasn’t exactly making bank. I took a contract role at a big marketing firm that paid $17 / hour…. rounding out to about 30k / year after taxes had I stayed there for a full year.

Thankfully, I’ve always been a budget queen, especially when it comes to cooking. Sure, it sucked working a full time “corporate” job and making as much as I made when I worked customer service for a clothing store, but ya live and ya learn.

As the world goes back to normal…. somewhat… office lunches have become an obstacle for me. Let’s face it – lunch is a weird meal of the day. I loveeeeee a big breakfast and a good dinner, but lunch? Nah fam, that’s where I get lost.

I discovered Keen One Quinoa back in 2020 through a friend of a friend, as they are a Boulder, Colorado based company (SKO BUFFS!!) and was immediately hooked. I was never one for pre-packaged bowls (mostly because my eating disorder would tell me that was a “waste of calories”… what the F**K). HOWEVER, that all changed.

I use Keen One Quinoa at least once a week when I head into the office for easy, affordable, time friendly meals. They’re vegan, gluten free, and packed full of nutrition.

When it comes to making an office lunch, the biggest tip I have is find out what keeps you satisfied. Unlike some, I cannot focus on work if I am hungry, which is why making sure I have a balanced lunch of carbs, fats, proteins, and veggies. I normally gravitate towards a big “nourish” bowl, especially because I get home from work so late that sometimes all I have the energy for is pasta. I always make sure to pack veggies into my day, as I feel way better & overall have more energy.

In all of these, I incorporate some protein (my go-to’s lately have been tofu and hard boiled eggs), carbs (rice, quinoa cups, and sweet potatoes hit different), veggies (I strive to have a base of some greens and add in some sort of roasted veggie), fats (avocado, dressing… the world is your oyster), and overall YUM! So tell me…. what do you like putting in your lunches?

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