Last updated: Mar 02, 2016

As restaurant portions grow increasingly larger (and so do Americans' waistlines), bringing your lunch to work is a great way to exercise control over your diet. Dont have time, you say, to pack your own lunch in the morning? Keep a mini pantry of healthy nonperishables at your office, so a delicious, fast, and healthy snack or lunch is as near as your office fridge or desk drawer. Get started by taking this grocery list to your store:

The Office Freezer
  • Frozen produce like broccoli and peas or mixed veggies

  • Frozen entrees like Amys new Brown Rice Bowl With Black-Eyed Peas & Veggies or Black Bean Vegetable Burrito; vegetarian dishes from the new Moosewood line, of cookbook fame (the Moroccan Stew and the Southwest Cornbread and Red Beans taste great); or quick, convenient chicken nuggets made by Ians or Applegate Farms


The Office Refrigerator
  • Vegetables like sliced cucumber, baby carrots, and cherry tomatoes (prepare at the beginning of the week)

  • Cheeses like Fontina, Gorgonzola, or shredded Cheddar

  • Turkey and other cold cuts

  • Prewashed salad greens and low-fat salad dressing

  • Baked tofu such as Wildwoods, which comes in flavors like teriyaki and Aloha (marinated with ginger and pineapple)

  • Condiments like salsa, your favorite mustard, and low-fat mayo to kick up any entree


The Desk Drawer
  • Cans of black beans and chickpeas

  • Tuna packets that dont require draining

  • Rice noodles and bulgur (steep in hot water to prepare)

  • Potatoes (zap in the microwave for 10 minutes)

  • Whole-grain bread or tortillas for a quick sandwich or wrap

  • Just-add-water soups, like Fantastics CarbTastic Soups (especially the Shiitake Mushroom and Asian Ginger Broccoli) and Big Soup Noodle Bowls

  • Slivered almonds, sunflower seeds, or dried fruits for salad toppings

  • Can opener, bowl, and utensils