Couscous Salad

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I don’t know about y’all, but I feel like lunch is kind of a struggle meal. I want to have something that tastes good, is easy to make, is portable to work/school, is pretty healthy, and keeps me full until dinner. That’s doable, but sometimes is just a little boring. Lunch just isn’t an exciting meal to me! When you think of lunch, what do you think of? Lunch just elicits the thought of a sandwich for me. I actually love sandwiches, but you can’t eat a sandwich every single day.

The other thing about lunch is that I don’t really ever think about making “a recipe”for lunch. I feel like I just throw something together. I think others feel the same way, judging from some recent social media posts I’ve seen from friends looking to add some variety to their brown-baggin’ it work lunches. Which led me to the realization that my simple, thrown-together lunch(es) might be something new for someone else.

This is one of my favorite go-to lunches. It pretty much hits all of my lunch criteria as above. Tastes good? Big old check. Easy to make? Check. Portable for work? Definite check. Reasonably healthy? Veggie-packed check. Keeps me full? Check, check, check. The portions I describe here gives me 3 or 4 lunches for a week, which simultaneously preps for a good portion of the week and leaves room for a little variety.

Like I said before, I don’t really follow a recipe for this and alter it probably every time. Try it this way. And next time, try some different vegetables, different dressing, or some additions like cheese or meats. The variation below uses Trader Joe’s Light Champagne Vinaigrette, my current obsession.

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Couscous Salad

Ingredients: 
  • 1 cup pearl couscous
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube
  • 1 small cucumber, sliced and quartered
  • 10 baby carrots, sliced
  • 10 kalamata olives, pitted and halved
  • 1 ear of corn, cooked/boiled and kernels removed
  • 2 tbsp Light Champagne Vinaigrette
  • Fresh-ground black pepper
Instructions: 
  1. Bring the water, couscous, and bouillon cube to a boil. Cook over medium-high heat until water is absorbed and grain is soft, but not mushy. (Note: different sizes and variations of couscous may require more or less water. Follow given instructions if they differ from mine.)
  2. Meanwhile, prepare your vegetables.
  3. After couscous has cooked, drain if needed, and set aside to cool.
  4. Combine veggies, couscous, and dressing. Top with a few turns of black pepper. Mix thoroughly.
Makes 3-4 lunch servings.

Now who has some new-to-me easy lunch ideas to share?

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