Now as we all know that discovering you’re a Coeliac or Celiac (especially if you had A-typical symptoms) can be daunting. Yet we think it’s even more daunting if you tend to err towards being a spontaneous type…
‘I’ll do it later, grab lunch on the run’
Suddenly you find that the work cafe becomes a minefield…
‘Bugger the salad bar has cous cous and everyone is mixing the tongs up’.
Do you want to take a chance that your salad leaves and tomatoes haven’t got cous cous on them?
Nope - neither to we. After eating a variety of jacket potatoes ’..yeah that’s all that’s safe for you to eat in here’ says the Catering Manager..you may - like us be longing for an exciting lunch. You may also have decided that you can no longer queue up and walk past all the ‘food porn’ to your lonely baked spud. Geez, why put yourself through that torture every day?
It’s time to take control, bite the bullet and start making your own lunch! Yes ‘can’t cook, won’t cook’ veterans we mean you! Yes students and you too! Busy Mums & Dads..you as well. Believe us..if we can master some nifty lunch meals then so can you. We were the world’s worse. Why Pain au Chocolate for breakfast and Mr Baguette with egg and bacon from Pret A Manger were our closest pals. Not any more…Yes it’s a faff at first - who isn’t tired in the evening and doesn’t want to start making lunch for tomorrow? Yes we know - we all are. But believe us if you start and do it for 3 weeks+ it will become a breeze. By then it’ll be a habit and you won’t even think about it.
Why you should start making your own lunch and seize control of GF food…
- you will know exactly what went into it! What a relief
- you’ll save time..no more 21 questions for the Corporate Chef!
- you’ll save yourself a fortune (instead pity your colleagues running to the trendy cafe for £5 sandwich and latte)!
- save time, less time queuing in line for a cafe meal more time to enjoy a walk in the park, soak up some vitamin D, catch up on work, phone a friend..etc
- you’ll and ensure you’re well on the road to better health (after all making snacks yourself is far less fattening - most of the time
- Plus if you buy and shop local you’ll also give something back to your community and can feel smug in cutting your carbon by not buying food with air miles…).
OK…we’re nearly convinced…but I don’t have a lunchbox..
So fear not! We’re here to help. There’s lots of recipe sites and blogs out there on the net so we won’t bore you with those. After all we bet by now Google knows ‘gluten free’ is your top search term! Nope instead we’re going to run through our top 10 hero products that will take you from ‘Grrr…why does everything damn thing have gluten in it?!’ to ‘Yum I’m so proud I made this great packed lunch myself and all my work mates are jealous. I don’t feel like I’m missing out at all!’
Our top 10 hero products for a savvy gluten-free lunch:
- Bon Appetit- Dine like a King!
This box has got rave reviews on a number of site’s we’ve trawled.
It looks fresh and adult in design. Enabling you to take rice noodles, sushi, salad, gf pasta or whatever you like. It’s made from polypropylene and divided into sections so you can split different foods; there’s even a removable inner bowl so you can microwave part of a meal (!) but keep everything else cold. Plus with a sauce-dipping area and lift-out pot ideal for salad dressing, the glass-like lid creates a watertight, silicone seal for everything that’s inside, keeping contents fresh and crisp.
YES - there’s more…. The lid doubles as a plate too, and as if that wasn’t enough, they’ve even included a fork with cutting edge, so you really can eat whatever you want wherever you are. How cool is that?!
- Bento boxes - stylish & great for OCD geeks…
Nifty ways to store and travel with a variety of lunch food!
Our pick of the websites include these and we think minimalist lovers will hunger for this one
See: Casabento at http://casabento.com Or being frugal? Savyy Coeliac…why not make your own, raid your cupboards - here’s a handy site on how to..Just Bento
- Fruit lovers…enjoy!
- Here’s a nifty idea. A lunchbox that keeps your fruit safe. No longer will you be rummaging around for that bruised apple at the bottom of your bag. Designed by a Dragon’s Den contestant this is a handy bag/box for anyone who’s keen to ensure they eat their recommended 5 a day fruit / veg.
See: John Lewis
- Sigg Lunch box: Like your lunchbox to look like your toolbox?
Well look no further. Those clever Swiss people at Sigg have created a hard wearing aluminium lunchbox with fasteners and rubber seal to ensure that what’s inside stays in and the rest stays out. Great for the daily bustle on your commute or hiking through the highlands!
- Best Eco box… We like this 3 in 1 stainless steel bento style box.
Handy for lunch on the run and pic-nics. Unlike some plastic lunchboxes (which are pretty unstainable, hard to recycle) this nifty BPA-free lunchbox is great for packing lunch with variety! It allows you to pack 3 items eg GF sandwich and two side dishes and is dishwasher safe.
See: Eco Lunch Boxes
- Personalise your lunchbox! Whether you’re a big kid or your kid needs to ensure their box doesn’t get mixed up with others here’s some handy ideas…
- Cutlery - well if you’re gonna pack your lunch you need something to eat it with right?
Right! Why not ditch the plastic and go for some sustainable bamboo cutlery instead?
See: Ecolunches If you can’t bear to do without metal/ plastic these are pretty nifty. For the geek / multi-tasker they are retractable knives and forks… See: Firebox
- How could we write about lunch boxes without including ‘Hello Kitty?’ This small box includes cutlery. Handy for Kitty fans or pink addicts…
Also great for kids…The Tiger bag/ box!
- Mmmm Marmite! Want to travel light and just take a GF Sandwich? This box is handy for short trips by train when you want to travel light. Or lunchtime mtgs. A retro box that feature Marmite (you either love or hate it!). The real stuff is packed with B12 and is gf in most countries. Say goodbye to clingfilm, foil and soggy sandwiches. We love this as GF bread can fall apart a lot more easily than ‘normal’ bread so give it go…
See: Marmite on Monsterstuff
- Sigg Water bottles - that’s right peeps a water bottle.
You don’t need to go camping to be eco/ frugal. Why pay for bottled water when you can filtar your own at home or use tap and take it into work with you? Light and stylish you’ll love Sigg. Plus it’s a great way of keeping track of how many bottles of water you drink at your desk. Just fill it up from the water cooler. Or if you work outdoors - even better as it keeps drinks chilled and is hard wearing!
* We also love this below…
Although we fear it’d be all too easy in the morning to mistake it for our laptop bag!
Remember…it pays to shop around.
Try your local charity shop, ebay, amazon online or department store and compare prices to bag your lunchbox bargin!
PS And if you really just need 1 hero product we recommend this…Ever had that sinking feeling …oooh what’s that whiff? And realised the banana you’d packed earlier has been battered to bits at the bottom of your bag?
No..oh well - you must be uber organised already - why are you reading this?!
Yes? Ahaha well then like us you’ll love this…
the banana guard!
See: Banana Guard
Be inspired…here’s some other handy sites…
- John Lewis http://www.johnlewis.com/230430770/Product.aspx
- My Friendly Lunch Box
- Foody Stuff
- Lunch box world
PPS We’ve independently trawled the net, reviewed boxes and check in with friends and family on their favourites to write this post. Of course if any lovely PR people from these companies want to send us any nice lunch boxes to trial in-depth we’d be happy to ; )