It doesn’t have to be the end of enjoying food. It can be a new adventure with tasty and colourful foods.
The danger with packed lunches or BBQs is that we become dependent on sausages, beef burgers, buns and dips, with the token salad.
Packed lunches need to be easy to prepare and box up, and the dishes can be converted into BBQ or summer outing ideas. I've listed below some useful ideas which I hope you will enjoy, which I have sourced from Coeliac UK.
Whether it’s summer holidays, back to school or you fancy a change for work, why not try some new lunch ideas. Add these fillings to your favourite gluten-free bread, top on toasted bread, crispbread, rice cakes or crackers, or fill a gluten-free roll, wrap or pitta bread:
- Tuna, sweetcorn and chilli – Mix together half a tin of tuna, a tablespoon of sweetcorn and a teaspoon of mayonnaise*. Add a pinch of chilli powder for an extra kick.
- Red pesto chicken – Take one small cooked chicken breast and chop into pieces. Mix with two teaspoons of red pesto*.
- Pepper and avocado – Mash half an avocado and mix with half a deseeded, chopped red pepper and a teaspoon of mayonnaise*. Add to your sandwich with fresh salad.
- Cream cheese and pesto – Spread your bread or roll with a thin layer of green pesto* and top with soft cheese.
- Brie and grape – Top the bread with sliced brie and halved green seedless grapes.
- Beef and watercress – Fill a roll or sandwich with leftover sliced beef and a handful of watercress and perhaps a bit of horseradish sauce*.
- Chocolate banana – Spread with chocolate spread* and top with sliced banana.
- Coronation chicken – Take one small cooked chicken breast and chop into pieces. Mix with two teaspoons of mayonnaise*, curry powder* to taste and two chopped dried apricots or golden raisins/sultanas.
- Top tip: If you don’t want your sandwich to go soggy, add the filling just before lunch, or use lettuce leaves to protect the bread.
- Pack a small pot of houmous* with carrot batons or celery sticks and mini gluten-free breadsticks*.
- Cold gluten-free pizza* can be a great way to use up leftovers for packed lunches the next day.
- Quick pasta salad – Mix together a tablespoon of mixed beans with 4 tablespoons of cooked gluten-free pasta*, chopped tomatoes, fresh mozzarella or feta cheese and herbs. Stir in a tablespoon of your favourite dressing* and serve with salad leaves.
- Rice and Quinoa Pea salad with peas, sweetcorn, avocado and sunflower seeds. Use mint leaves to give it a lift of flavour.
- Chicken drum sticks or gluten free sausages make a great finger food.
- Potato salad, using sliced new potatoes, chopped coriander, sliced olives, drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice. Simply mix together.
- Caulimond Rice (see our free from recipes) maks a great alternative to a rice salad.
- Fruit, nut and seed mix – Make your own mix with any combination of dried fruit and nuts, for example; raisins, dried apricots, dried cranberries, dried coconut, pumpkin seeds, linseed, pecans and walnuts.
- Fromage frais, crème fraiche or natural yogurt can be used as a sweet dip for eating with sliced apple, pear and strawberries. Toffutti is a great soft cheese Free From alternative.
- Fruit is the ultimate fast food – apples, kiwi fruit, bananas, satsumas, grapes and berries are healthy, gluten-free snacks.
- Fruit Kebabs can be made up.
- Vegetable Kebabs (cherry tomatoes, courgette slices, pineapple cubes and cooked new potato.
- Convert Kebabs into meat versions.