Thinking back to those first days of going gluten free, long before gluten free bread was readily available in grocery stores, I tried to replicate my gluten filled lunch by spreading peanut butter and jam on plain rice cakes. I usually ended up throwing them out and eating nachos.
I'm not sure when I figured out that if I made a little extra, I could have leftovers for lunch, but I'm so glad I did.
This dish is almost a reheat and serve dish (though it's fantastic cold as a salad). It's yesterday's Grilled Chicken and Vegetables reheated in a skillet (or not) and topped with a very simple dressing. This makes enough for a large spoonful each. If you like things really saucy, double the recipe.
- 1/2 cup salsa
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or to taste up to 1/2 cup)
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- In a bowl, combine all ingredients.
- Add as desired to grilled vegetables.
Giving up a major part of your diet can make preparing meals a little intimidating. Even with a list of gluten free foods, you may be wondering how to put it all together. For the next couple of weeks, I’m going to be sharing the dinners that I cook here, and the lunches that I make from the leftovers. Not “reheat in the microwave” lunches. I’m too picky for that. If I give up a food, I want the food I can eat to be as amazing as possible. The dishes below will all be linked up with recipes within a few days.
Four Simple Gluten Free Dinners and Elegant Leftover Lunches
Dinner 2: Baked Tilapia on a Bed of Sweet onions, and Garden Salad (this is a great one for busy nights!)
Lunch 2: Tilapia Lettuce Wraps with Green Apple Dressing
Dinner 3: Roast Chicken with Apple and Sweet Onion Stuffing and Steamed Broccoli.
Lunch 3: Chicken and Broccoli Egg Bakes.
Dinner 4: Pan Fried Salmon and Onions Over Creamy Garlic Herb Spaghetti Squash
Lunch 4: Salmon salad with Sweet Rice Vinegar Dressing and Capers.
Looking for even more simple gluten free dinners?
Salmon and Sweet Potatoes with Cucumber Peach Relish
Super Easy Baked Chicken Breast in the Crockpot
We had company last night. It was way too hot to cook so we ordered McDonald’s for some; but for me, and everyone else who wanted, I made salad.
This salad was inspired by my craving for spaghetti coupled with my heat induced laziness. I had some left-over grilled chicken, tomatoes, cucumbers and onions. For the noodles I used individually packaged mung bean vermicelli (because you can soften it with hot tap water- no cooking), one pack per person, but you can use rice vermicelli instead, about 2oz or about 1/2 cup per person.(Unless you’re starving. Then throw in as many noodles as you want. No exact measurements here.)
I called it a Greek salad because I happened to have feta cheese in the fridge and some of it ended up in the salad. (And maybe I ate the rest with my fingers.)
This would be amazing with black beans, so if you want to make it vegan, substitute black beans for the chicken and leave out the feta.
Chicken Noodle Greek Salad
Click here to download a printable recipe.
- Mung bean vermicelli, about 1/2 cup per person
- Cold chicken, sliced, or canned black beans, drained and rinsed, about 1/4 cup per person
- 2 tomatoes chopped
- l large cucumber, seeded and chopped
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1/4 cup red wine or rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons Greek seasoning or your favorite dried herbs
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Feta cheese
- Cook noodles according to package directions and divide evenly into bowls.
- Place slices of chicken in a line down the center of the noodles.
- Combine chopped vegetables, vinegar, oil, herbs, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
- Spoon vegetables over noodles on either side of the chicken.
- Add feta cheese to taste
Yum! just like spaghetti only without the heat!
Taking a lunch to work or school is one of the biggest gluten free struggles. If you have access to a microwave it’s easier, you can take left-overs from the night before. But what if you don’t? Or what if you’re going to an event and you know the food will be full of gluten and you want to bring your own?
My friend Joyce introduced me to this fast and easy chickpea salad that has the flavor of that pasta salad your mom used to make for picnics. I used tomatoes, cucumbers and green onions for the vegetables, but you can use whatever you have on hand, even left-over cold broccoli or asparagus.
Brown Bag Lunch Chickpea Salad
click here to download a printable recipe
- 2 cups of cooked or canned chickpeas drained and rinsed
- 1 cup vegetables chopped to chickpea size
- 1/2 cup gluten free Italian Dressing (or see dressing recipe below)
- salt to taste
- Place chickpeas and vegetables in a large bowl
- Add salad dressing and stir gently to combine
- Place in serving size plastic dishes with lids to take for lunch
- Eat at lunch
Chickpea Salad all ready to go out for lunch
Fast Salad Dressing
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning or 1/4 cup very finely chopped fresh herbs of choice