Power Jars
May 16, 2014
Linda Watson in brown bagging, grab-and-go lunches, healthy, lunch, meals in jars, power jars, savory

Add sparkle to the tops of your power jars with wrapping paper and hidden signs of love: orange-peel hearts, daikon hearts, and smiling faces made from beets and parsleySave money, get healthy, and cut stress by making delicious lunches that are ready to go when you are. Arrange layers of colorful food in jars to eat as is or to turn upside-down on a plate.  

What's the sparkle? Your secret love message!

If you're in a crafty mood, add special touches that make you and your loved ones smile at school or work. In less than a minute, you can top the jar with a heart, smiling face, or lightening bolt. Because the sparkle is hidden at the top of the jar, no one needs to know why your sweetie looks so happy. Add one on your own lunch too!

Adjust your choices to suit your tastes and the season. Increase the sense of variety by using different combinations throughout the week and by serving foods raw or cooked. Pack with a piece of fresh fruit and a healthy dessert if desired.

For example, you could spoon in these layers into a mason jar, listed from bottom to top: 

Here's Power Jar lunch we did for a Wellness-at-Work class for Meredith College in February with bananas and beets. Now that it's spring, you could use a layer of strawberries with a strawberry heart as the sparkle.

Power Jar mason jar lunch with black beans, carrots, daikons, bananas

A happy, healthy lunch with long-term results

Say goodbye to the brown-bag blahs with meals that take under 20 minutes to make and that cost less than $2. Just make a habit of cooking enough for dinner to layer the extras in Power Jars for lunch. Whether you are cooking for one or for a crowd, making a healthy lunch can help give you the energy and savings to live your dreams.

Adorable examples

Check out the super-cute jars made by Callene Maria Ryan and her family. They transformed making lunch from a chore into creative playtime! Callene worked with me this spring to create two weeks' worth of grab-and-go lunch menus for her practicum project in the Meredith College nutrition program. 

Article originally appeared on Cook for Good, home of Wildly Affordable Organic and Fifty Weeks of Green (http://cookforgood.com/).
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