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The Whole Deal Pack-a-Lunch Contest

Tell us what’s for lunch and you might win a $50 gift card. You know packing lunch is worth it. It saves you money vs. eating out and lets you know exactly what is going into your meal—and your body. But when is lunch worth $50? When you win $50 just for your concept of lunch! Whether you’re packing your own lunch or packing one for someone else, no doubt you’re always looking for fresh ideas to make it both tasty and healthy. Throw your favorite lunch concept into the mix below and see what you get back. It might be great ideas from other readers. And it might be a $50 gift card! We’re truly looking for both tasty and healthy, so be sure your lunch idea includes a protein, a whole grain and at least one serving each of fruits and vegetables. We’ll choose 5 winners—one for each weekday—at random from all entries that meet those guidelines and are submitted by September 30, 2010. So, tell us…what’s for lunch? We’re hungry!

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2426 comments

Comments

Jillian says …

This week it's a sandwich on wheat bread - Smart Deli's "ham" slices with Monterey Jack cheese and a little mayo, Washington Cherries, and a cucumber/yogurt/dill salad. It's 10:30 right now, and I can't wait until noon!

Antje says …

When we have leftovers from our weekly BBQs I make a salad for work made of organic wheat pasta, my marinated (leftover) grilled veggies (zucchini, red bell peppers, eggplant, red onions), some fresh basil, fresh tomato pieces and skim mozarella pieces and a marinade of Olive oil and Aceto Balsamico. Sooo good!

Jordana McLaughlin says …

Organic Horseradish Egg Salad sandwich. All ingredients are organic :) A dash of mustard; chopped celery, onion, and tomato; a tablespoon of Horseradish, and a few teaspoons of plain yogurt (much healthier than mayo) with 2 sliced boiled eggs, served on a pita bread. I usually eat this with an apple.

Annie Browne says …

Sandwich on grainy bread: spicy plum chutney, cheese (of choice), sprouts, cucumber, shredded carrots, avocado, turkey breast, tomato; then some terra chips; fruit leather, and a cold seltzer.

Stephanie says …

Literally, today's brown bag lunch for a delish Monday lunch :) A delish sammy - Sodium free wheat bread, pesto sauce, low sodium turkey slices, light cheddar cheese, raw spinach, organic tomato slices, and slices of organic avocado. Mediterranean hummus with bagel chips and carrot sticks. A cup of chocolate soy milk and Gala apple slices for desert .

Tina C says …

Salad: arugula, fennel, oven roasted chicken breast, orange supremes and toasted pine nuts with orange vinagrette. Whole wheat pita.

Amber says …

365 Organic baby mixed green salad with plainville Hickory Smoked Turkey Breast, a sprinkle of goat cheese, roasted pecan and almond pieces, and 365 Balsamic Vinaigrette. Yumm!

Jamie says …

My favorite go to lunch right now is romaine and spinach mixed, dried cranberries, slivered almonds, some hemp seeds, and terryaki tofu cubes with a little asian sesame dressing. It's cool, refreshing, and delicious!

Ana says …

2 slices 9 grain toast, spread fresh avocado on one slice, spread fresh Chevrai goat cheese on the 2nd slice,put the slices together and cut in half & enjoy with fresh sweet Campari tomatoes. Fresh cut melon slices for dessert and fresh homemade lemonade. Homemade lemonade, 1 pitcher filtered water, 4 lemons halved & squeezed. Remove remove & chop up pulp and put in pitcher, then squeeze 1/4 to 1/2 cup of honey, add ice & mix well. Throw in a couple mint leaves for fragrance.

hellen says …

Just because is packed, doesn't mean it has to be boring! Since I try to eat every 3 hours. I would start with a cup of Quinoa, 6 boiled eggs. LUNCH: Whole wheat wrap, herb chicken cut into pieces, blue cheese, crusted pecans, chopped tomatoes, avocado, and fat free shredded cheese. with a side of RAW almonds from whole foods (THE BEST) ! MAybe a bottle of ZICO coconut water :) yay! The whole deal about having packed lunch, is to feel hommie. My husband always tells me he has better days at work when he brings his packed lunch from home, wheter buying something out! It's like he carries a little piece of home with him. So whether, it's your kids or husband MAKE IT FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Christine says …

1/2 cup of cooked lentils 1/2 can rinsed chickpeas 1 diced tomato 2 TBS lemon juice 1 TBS olive oil 1 TBS dried mint 2 TBS crumbled feta Salt & pepper to taste (serves 1, but double the recipe to use a whole can and you get lunch for 2 days) Gluten free, inexpensive, filling, fast & easy! -- fits all my requirements for a weekday lunch!

Shannon K says …

We've been brown baggin' it for almost 5 years now. Well, more like 'reusable baggin' it. 3 of my 4 children are allergic to dairy and 2 are also allergic to gluten. This has proven to be a challenge when it comes to convenience. Their typical lunch and required morning snack usually consists of: apple slices and sunbutter (snack), and tofu salad on gluten free bread, air popped popcorn with olive oil, nutritional yeast, and Bragg Aminos, and carrot sticks (lunch). They drink water or herbal tea sweetened with stevia in a BPA-free reusable water bottle.

Jean H says …

A nice hearty lunch. The night before sautee up some fresh veggies-zuks,onion,shrooms,green & red peppers, with sprinkle of ground ginger, little salt for flavor, cracked black pepper, fresh lemon juice, with sauteed chicken strips. Thicken it up with arrowroot mixed with a little milk. Place all this on top of some couscous. Somtimes we might put curry in it with some coconut milk.

Frances Graham says …

A thermos full of cold organic cottage cheese with fresh pineapple cut up on top. A large tortilla with organic low fat cream cheese, baby spinach, roasted chicken lunchmeat, and a small drizzle of red french dressing rolled up and cut into pinwheels. Sweet potato chips on the side with vitamin water to drink. It covers all the food groups and flavors!

Kurt R. says …

Baked, spiced tofu on honey whole wheat with sprouts and Nayonaise, garlic dill pickle and juicy sweet cherries.

Erin from Long Island says …

My all-time favorite take-along lunch is a sandwich on organic, sprouted bread. I load it up with arugula and tomatoes from my garden, organic sliced turkey, smooshed avocado (instead of mayo) red onion, and homemade mustard that is a combo of honey mustard and brown mustard.

Kau Kau Wagon says …

ooops forgot we do add lunch meat thin sliced. :) Chicken, turkey, or ham works great.

Cely says …

I would pack a sprouted wheat tortilla wrap filled with a white fish (tilapia or sea bass) and topped with a mango type salsa that includes chopped mango, white onion, black beans, cilantro, corn and sliced cherry tomatoes all of which have been marinated in light salt and pepper, white vinegar and a hint of lime juice. Add some light spinach in the wrap underneath the fish with the salsa mixture on top. A small cucumber, tomato, kalamata olive and feta cheese salad on the side (seasoned with salt and pepper, and a tad bit of balsamic vinaigrette and olive oil). To satisfy that sweet tooth; a sliced strawberry, blackberry and blueberry salad topped with a bit of light agave nectar. Down it all with some fresh squeezed carrot juice or just water and a lemon wedge. For vegetarians: substitute the fish with a meatless microprotein naked chicken cutlet (did not mention the brand since I'm not sure if that violates the posting guidelines). For vegans: eliminate the fish altogether and add extra black beans if you wish. You may also add walnuts to the cucumber salad. For gluten intolerant folks: substitute the wheat tortilla for sprouted corn tortilla. Bon appetit!

Stephanie Jackson says …

pack a lunch contest egg salad made with light mayo topped with hungarian paprika (smoked or spicy) and fresh parsley on a whole wheat wrap or with whole wheat crakers, spring water with a few slices of lemon, and a fresh mango slices (pre-packaged) guava,or watermelon

Susan Cro says …

Whole grain bread, Tofurkey slices, organic mustard, orgainic lettuce, organic sliced onions, local organic sliced Avocado. One Banana for dessert.

Dawn Webster says …

Turkey Roll Up: Whole wheat tortilla with lite veggie cream cheese (also acts as the "glue" to keep tortilla rolled up), turkey and veggie of choice (shredded carrots or lettuce & tomaato, whatever veggie the kid will eat!) Fruit sccoped out with a melon baller, drizzled with lemon or lime juice Carrot & celery sticks Milk

Lauren says …

I bring a packed lunch to work everyday to save money and to ensure I'm getting essential nutrients! My favorite meal to bring on the go is a whole wheat pita stuffed with hummus, cucumbers, sprouts, tomatoes, olives, pepperoncinis and roasted red peppers. I also pack a banana paired with two tablespoons of natural chunky peanut butter and greek yogurt with fresh mixed berries. YUM. I usually pack this all the night before and have it ready to go. If I'm planning on working out or going for a run I'll also drink a protein shake a few hours after lunch! Bon APPETIT!

Ariel Hayat says …

I am a high school student that packs my lunch everyday due to the less-than-satisfactory choices at my school's cafeteria. One of the quickest and tastiest options to make is oven-roasted turkey on a whole wheat sandwich roll with lettuce, tomato, and whole-grain mustard. I add carrot sticks with hummus dip and an unsweetened applesauce, with a bottle of iced tea.

Gunn Family says …

Sushi! for both my husband and I

Karen D. says …

My son loves Bento style lunches. Whenever I make sushi for dinner, I make enough to send leftovers with him for lunch (usually California rolls). On the side, I send baby carrots and dip, grapes, and a handful of cashews. Reuseable water bottle. Lunch from the cafeteria will never be eaten by my kids.

Annie says …

Perfectly ripe Anjou pear, some Pirate's Booty, the magical combo of carrots and hummus, and some good Greek yogurt. Chased down by some chocolate soy milk.

abby says …

I'm having homemade chana masala....yum

Melissa says …

Lunch is packed everyday in our Vegan household. Today's lunch was homemade organic hummus with organic carrot & celery sticks, gardein beefless tip kabobs, whole grain pita with cucumber & tomato salad & blueberries for dessert. Yummy!

Teresa Daniels says …

I generally make extra when I cook dinner; that way I can pack healthy lunches for myself and my son for when we go to work. The current "one dish meal" is a rice concoction: fresh white bass that I caught yesterday, white rice, WFM Roasted Vegetable pasta sauce, garlic that I picked myself, various herbs that I grew, plus some Rocky Mtn Pepper Blend from WFM, a home grown purple bell pepper, some onion, and mushrooms all simmered together in a dish similar to a risotto. It's very tasty, economical, plus healthy and filling. What more could we want? If anyone wants dessert, there are fresh figs, watermelon, or white peaches to top things off.

Allison Woolbright says …

Sandwich with whole wheat bread, organic mustard, tomatoe(from the garden in summer),slice of organic cheese and a slice of lunchmeat. Usually grapes, sometimes apples,or watermelon. one organic carrot peeled and cut into sticks, and receintly home made potatoe salad with home grown red potatoes.

Lauren says …

I am eatting a ham sanwich on wheat bread,wuth a slice of coby jack chesse melted,and i am eatting apple sauce for a side,and grapes stawberries raseberrys AND apples

Elizabeth says …

a wheat tortilla, with a bit of dijon mustard spread, cooked chicken breast, swiss cheese, a few jalapenos and a few sliced green apple slices for crunch.

Alexandra says …

I love Mediterranean style dishes Plain Greek yogurt, a small side of couscous and Cut slices of Grilled chicken breast ( from yesterdays leftovers) all garnished with dill and half a lemon and a couple of blue cheese stuffed olives . Water to drink.

Karen Sheppard says …

Got a craving for a delicious lunch well take a bite out of this...try some whole wheat pasta with cilantro pesto topped off with toasted walnuts, along with lime grilled chicken breast topped with an avocado, tomato, green onion hash and for dessert some homemade cinnamon apples. YUM!

Krystal Tanami says …

I make myself a organic peanut butter and jam sandwich on whole grain bread with jam that I have preserved myself so their are no artificial ingredients just fruit and sugar. My preserves taste way better than anything you can buy in the store and because its made at home it counts as a serving of fruit. If I could figure out how to make peanut butter I would make that too. I also cut up either some cucumber or tomatoes and whatever whole fruit I have on hand just to have something cool and crisp in my lunch.

Kristina Morris says …

Left-Overs Delight: Last night, we grilled steaks and veggies. Today, I packed my husband a mouth-watering meal of sliced steak and with onions and tomatoes,atop a bed of organic brown Basmati rice(365 of course). A baggie of freshly chunked watermelon sealed the deal. I like to make sure he has something to look forward to at the office.

Vanessa says …

We love wraps for an easy packed lunch. We use a whole grain wrap often with all kinds of variations of chicken salad or salmon with spinach. Then we always have a veggie and a fruit side. The veggie side ranges from a simple salad to carrots or cut cucumbers with hummus. The fruits are anything that is fresh and organic in the house. Yum!

Emily says …

Today I'm having: Plain yogurt with raspberries Salad with lettuce, peppers (red and yellow), walnuts, cranberries and olive oil and vinegar dressing with a touch of agave nectar. Apple Granola bar Water I try to buy organic when possible and today's lunch is probably 90% there. Can't wait until noon! Now I'm hungry ;)

Rita says …

1. Ito En Jasmine Green tea bottle is a must!! (no sugar, plenty of flavour and totally healthy) 2. European butter lettuce mix topped with garden cucumber slices, red onions, grape tomatoes, chick peas, all natural turkey slices, parmesan cheese and Anne's Sesame Goddess Dressing, OR Whole Foods' own Amazing!! Caesar dressing (ask at the prepared meals counter). 3. Don't leave out desert: Wallaby Caramel Apple Down Under OR Dulce de Leche organic yogurt - Yummy!!!

Stacy Blondin says …

I love to make (and eat :)) Collard Green Wraps for lunch! I blanch the big leaves in boiling water or in the microwave with a little water for 1 minute, then fill them to the brim with quinoa, tofu or beans, and all the veggies I have on hand (shredded carrots, zuchini, rutabaga, beets, etc.), sprinkle some nutrition yeast, kelp flakes and Braggs Amino acids, and roll them up like burritos ... yum! Vegan, gluten-free, fast, filling and delicious! The best part is that you can eat them with your hands = no cleanup!

Naomi says …

In a tupperware container mix a little bit of each of the following: canned black beans (drained) canned chickpeas (drained) frozen edamame succotash or regular seccotash defrosted in the fridge overnight halved cherry/grape tomatoes cubed fresh mozerella chopped fresh basil In a smaller "dip" sized tupperware: olive oil salt and pepper At lunch: shake up your olive oil mixture, pour over your veggie/bean mixture, and combine together Easy to eat. Easy to transport. Pack with a whole grain pita or a roll, some nuts, and fruit. Perfect!

Kara Muller says …

Avocado, yellow onion, raw cheddar cheese, almond butter, and hummus on toasted gluten free bread. For a sweet treat, I would pack my homemade honey lemon blueberry blondie. (gluten free and raw)

sandra huang says …

1 cup cooked whole wheat pasta, any kind 1/2 cup shredded or chopped cooked leftover chicken 1 cup shredded carrots, cucumbers and green onion 1/2 cup Whole Foods 365 Organic peanut sauce roasted sesame seeds and pepper, if desired 1 piece of fresh whole fruit, banana, pear, apple, peach, nectarine, etc. Mixed first 4 ingredients together in a lunch container, either the night before and refrigerate or in the morning. Served chilled or at room temperature. Sprinkle roasted sesame seeds and/or pepper on top, if desire. Finish off lunch with a piece of whole fruit.

Kat Zimm says …

Classic Italian Sandwich 1. Whole Grain Ciabatta (Ciabatta Integrale), sliced, toasted, and brushed lightly with Italian Herb-infused Olive Oil 2. Slices Buffalo Mozzarella Cheese 3. Your Favorite Heirloom Tomato, sliced, sprinkled with a dash of sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper 4. Fresh Basil Leaves, whole

leanne lacewell says …

I would pack a small whole grain bagel spread with cream cheese packed with broccoli sprouts and cucumbers sprinkled with a little salt and dill. On the side, a hard boiled egg and some frozen grapes drizzled with melted dark chocolate and sprinkled with raw walnuts.

Meg says …

Let's be honest, kids don't want chicken salad or lettuce and tomato in their lunch! Fill them up with that stuff at home! My lunch is quick to prepare and gets eaten every time (the teachers tell me): Organic low fat Horizon cream cheese with no sugar added Bionaturae fruit spread on Whole Foods 12 grain bread; organic blueberries (good for popping); baby carrots with stems on (ala Bugs Bunny); Stonyfield Farms YoKids Squeezers yogurt tubes (for a sweet finish).

Steven Sutherland says …

Protien Bar 0 Cal o Sugar Energy Drink Protein Shake

Hannah says …

Whole Wheat Pita stuffed with tzatziki or hummus, store bought falafel balls, mixed greens and sliced tomatoes. Celery sticks filled with Laughing Cow Light Swiss spreadable cheese. 1 cup of cherries, or Granny Smith Apple slices with peanut or almond butter!

Julie J. says …

My lunch today consists of a lovely green salad with diced apples and pears, chopped walnuts, crumbled goat cheese and homemade balsamic dressing. For a snack I'm going to have my favorite quinoa salad made with corn, black beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, dijon mustard, garlic and red wine vinegar. Thanks.. now you've me hungry! :)

Fin Seely says …

Here is what I like for lunch: Stone ground mustard, some lettuce, a slice of turkey bologna, and cheddar cheese on whole wheat bread as a main course. Then, for a side, half of an ovacado. Finally, for dessert, some low fat frozen yogurt. This is really just low fat yogurt stuck in the freezer the night before!

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