Recipe: Mediterranean Salad
Mediterranean Lunch Meal Prep
Prep on a Sunday to have your lunches ready for the week!
1. Gather the ingredients.
You will need:
1 batch of Roasted Spiced Chickpeas (see recipe below)
1 container of cherry or grape tomatoes
1 container of pitted olives
1 cup dry quinoa (to make 3 cups cooked)
1 bag of lettuce
1 container of hummus
1 container of crumbled feta cheese
Balsamic vinaigrette dressing
Store bought or homemade Tabbouleh (a mixture of parsley, tomatoes, mint, onion and bulgur)
Grilled chicken breasts if extra protein is desired
2. Make the Roasted Spiced Chickpeas.
Roasted Spiced Chickpeas
2 – 15 oz cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
½-1 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp paprika
½-1 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (or more if you like them very spicy)
Salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Drain and rinse the beans with water. Pat the beans dry with a paper towel – the drier they are the better to get a crunchy texture. Toss beans with the olive oil and spices (add more than listed if preferred) on a baking sheet and spread out into an even layer. Roast beans for about 25-30 minutes until crispy. Store leftovers in an airtight container.
3. Cook the quinoa.
If you haven’t cooked quinoa before, it is prepared similarly to rice. Rinse the 1 cup of dry quinoa with water. Place in a saucepan with 2 cups of water on high heat and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan with a lid and reduce the heat to medium low. Cook for about 15 minutes or until the water is absorbed and you can see little rings around the quinoa grain. Turn off heat and let sit for a few minutes. You can also cook quinoa in a rice cooker if it is available.
4. Prepare vegetables.
Chop the cucumber, tomatoes, and olives to your desired size and store in separate airtight containers in the fridge. Wait to cut the avocado until you are about to eat your lunch, as it can brown easily. Tip: keep the pit in the leftover avocado and wrap tightly in plastic wrap to avoid browning through the week.
Make your own Mediterranean mix for lunch each day of the week by mixing and matching the ingredients above. For example, make a lunch bowl with a handful of lettuce, ½ cup cooked quinoa, cucumbers, tomatoes and olives, and top with a ¼-1/2 cup of spiced chickpeas, ¼ of an avocado, a sprinkle of feta cheese, a dollop of hummus and a scoop of tabbouleh. The next day, take some of these ingredients and stuff into the inside of a pita pocket for a change up, or spread on top of a flattened pita for a “flatbread”. Switch it up for each day of the week to add some variety!