Soup for Lunch!


Here’s tomorrow’s lunch: black bean soup with cilantro and sour cream.  Here at the Cottage, winter is all about cozy foods like fragrant soups and breads.  I pack my breakfast and lunch every day, because I am frugal and because I leave the house too early to eat breakfast – my minimum 12-hour fast is not done.

A few years ago, mason jar salads were all over the internet. They made pretty photos, but as someone who has packed many years of lunch salads, I was mystified by their popularity. A quart-sized mason jar is bulky and heavy and the wrong shape from which to eat a salad, resulting in the necessity of a second dish to clean.

However, I find pint-sized mason jars to be the ideal container for soup lunches. Unless you’re using a thermal food jar and preheated soup, there aren’t many other leakproof containers, and these can go directly into the microwave and double as a soup bowl. Leftover soup can go into the mason jar and into the freezer (be careful not to overfill, due to expanding liquid that can cause the jar to crack) and then pulled out when some lunch food is needed. Small containers can be used for any soup toppings to be added after heating.

I cooked 2 pounds of black beans on the weekend. Some beans went into the refrigerator for one of my favorite quick meals: Beans, Greens, & Carotenes. Others went into the freezer for future enchilada or burrito nights. And the last of the beans, plus the bean broth, were seasoned for black bean soup.

Other soups that make delicious, satisfying lunches:

Minestrone’s many variations
Random vegetable soup with beans and barley
Tuscan bean soup
Curried pumpkin
…but really, what steaming hot soup doesn’t make a satisfying lunch on a cold winter day?

What do you pack for lunch?

One thought on “Soup for Lunch!

  1. Lately I’ve been more into salads – usually packed, but sometimes when I run short on time I buy them at school. I’m thankful that our school lunch program is really good – I’m gluten free, yet on any day that I can’t have the entree, I know the salad bar will always be fresh, with a variety of delicious fixings that changes daily. Although the ranch has frequently run out by the time I get to it. LOL

    Here’s something you might like: I learned about a portable oven on a weight loss group I was frequenting on FB. So I used to be strongly in the mason jar camp, but since getting this portable oven, I now opt for flat bottomed Pyrex instead. So basically this thing is an insulated bag with a hot plate in the bottom that plugs in and zips shut. You put your lunch in it in the morning and it leaves you with a beautiful, piping hot lunch at lunch time. No more line at the microwave, no more frozen middle, no more 5+ minutes of my scant 30 min. lunch time spent heating up anything (I would frequently batch cook and freeze a bunch of lunches, haven’t so much been doing that lately). I love it. I bought this one: Not cheap, but also buying frozen burritos and other crap wasn’t cheap either. I estimate I have easily made back the cost of it in savings on the easier-to-heat prepackaged lunches I was buying when I was so frustrated with the microwave situation.


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