Recipes for Work Lunch and Dinner

Recipes

One of the easiest ways to make space in your budget is to trim those costly (and often lackluster) work lunches out. Grabbing a slice might seem cheap, but you’ll often find no better discount than packing a lunch.

And while we love our easy budget lunches, sometimes it pays to invest in a little decadence — especially when you’re getting extra bang for your buck. Here are five recipes from the DailyWorth staff that work overtime as delicious dinners and lunch the next day at your desk.

It Pays to Cook

It Pays to Cook

One of the easiest ways to make space in your budget is to trim those costly (and often lackluster) work lunches out. Grabbing a slice might seem cheap, but you’ll often find no better discount than packing a lunch.

And while we love our easy budget lunches, sometimes it pays to invest in a little decadence — especially when you’re getting extra bang for your buck. Here are five recipes from the DailyWorth staff that work overtime as delicious dinners and lunch the next day at your desk.

Baked Pasta With Broccoli Rabe And Mushrooms

Baked Pasta With Broccoli Rabe And Mushrooms

I adapted this from my girl Deb at Smitten Kitchen. Her version is much more decadent (more cheese, full-fat milk). My version doesn’t taste even remotely healthy, even though it is.

Ingredients:
1 lb. pasta (something hefty and short, like rigatoni, works best)
2 bundles broccoli rabe (or broccoli, if you prefer), roughly chopped
1 lb. mushrooms (or go crazy and use sausage), sliced
½ c. grated Parmesan cheese
2 c. low-fat milk
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
¼ c. all-purpose flour
½ tsp. table salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced (or garlic powder — you do you)
Nutmeg, to taste
Cooking spray

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Boil water in a large pot with salt. Add pasta, and 5 minutes before you get to an al dente noodle, add the broccoli rabe. Once noodles are cooked al dente, drain in a colander and set aside.
  3. Cook mushrooms or sausage in cooking spray until they’re browned. Throw them into whatever’s holding your noodles and broccoli.
  4. Here’s the fun part: making a béchamel sauce. Melt butter in a saucepan. Add the flour and whisk until combined, cooking for about 1 minute. Slowly drizzle in milk, stopping to whisk it all together between additions. Keep whisking until the sauce is thick like pancake batter. Add the garlic and nutmeg, salt, and pepper.
  5. Mix the sauce with all the other ingredients and throw it into a 9×13 baking dish. Sprinkle Parmesan on top and bake for 25 minutes.

I get at least eight servings out of this; it freezes wonderfully and reheats magically in office microwaves. Feel free to substitute whatever greens you like.

—Julia Sonenshein, Associate Editor

Zucchini Lasagna

Zucchini Lasagna

Ingredients:
4 lg. or 6 sm. zucchinis
1 jar premade tomato sauce
2/3 c. part-skim ricotta
1 c. low-fat shredded mozzarella
Oregano, to taste
Garlic powder, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste
Olive oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Slice zucchinis into ½-in. slices.
  3. Place slices on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil and greased with nonstick cooking spray, and brush with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  4. Bake 12-14 minutes, until they’re soft but not mushy. Remove from oven and set aside.
  5. Lower oven to 350°F.
  6. Spread a layer of tomato sauce in a casserole pan. Place a layer of cooked zucchini on top.
  7. Place dollops of ricotta and shredded mozzarella on the zucchini. Top with sauce and continue to build as many layers as you’d like. Sprinkle the top with mozzarella, Parmesan, and oregano.
  8. Bake at 350°F 12-15 minutes or until golden brown on top.

—Steph Licata, Director of Programming & Membership

Spicy Turkey Chili

Spicy Turkey Chili

Ingredients:
1 lb. ground turkey
1 tsp. thyme
½ tsp. sage
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 med. yellow onion, chopped
½ shallot, chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 sm. jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped
1 Tbsp. chili powder
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 c. red wine
1 16-oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 16-oz. can red beans
Bread or chips

Directions:

  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, brown the meat with thyme, sage, and half the garlic. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. In the same pot, heat the oil and add onion, remaining garlic, shallot, red bell pepper, and jalapeño, and sauté until vegetables begin to brown.
  3. Add chili powder, cayenne pepper, and salt to taste. Stir until spices stick to the pan.
  4. Add wine and cook until liquid is reduced by half.
  5. Add tomatoes and bring to a boil.
  6. Stir in beans and turkey and simmer, partially covered, over medium-low heat for at least 1 hour.

Serve with bread or chips; bonus points for cheese and sour cream. Chili is best when reheated in a dingy office microwave.

—Brooke Siegel, former Editor-in-Chief

Roasted Vegetable Medley

Roasted Vegetable Medley

Ingredients:
1 Tbsp. olive oil
5 russet potatoes, quartered
1 lg. squash, cubed
1 red onion, quartered
5 cloves garlic
1 bunch asparagus
2 ears of corn, kernels removed from cob
Salt and pepper
French baguette
1 egg (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. Add the potatoes, garlic, onion, salt, and pepper.
  2. Cook until the potatoes slightly brown, about 15 minutes. Add the squash, corn, and asparagus. Cook until the asparagus becomes tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Serve over crunchy French bread, and — if you’re feeling extravagant — add an over-easy egg on top.

—Garrett McDonnell, Associate Producer

Zucchini

Zucchini "Noodles" and Ground Turkey Meat Sauce

Ingredients:
Olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 28-oz. can whole, peeled San Marzano tomatoes
Fresh basil
Splash of white wine
1 lb. ground turkey
½ onion, sliced
3 med. zucchinis
Salt and pepper, to taste
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (optional)

Directions:

Sauce

  1. Heat olive oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add the crushed garlic and stir until fragrant but not brown. Add the whole peeled tomatoes, juice and all, and stir.
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook 15-20 minutes, until tomatoes soften and they can be mashed. Once soft, mash the tomatoes with a potato masher or the back of a heavy ladle, and continue cooking. Add a splash of white wine. Continue cooking on medium-low heat.
  3. Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, drizzle olive oil. Once heated, add sliced onions and a dash of salt. Stir to soften.
  4. Add salt and pepper to the raw ground turkey before adding to the pan. Once the onions are soft, add ground turkey, and continue to stir and break up the meat until crumbly.
  5. Cook thoroughly until meat is browned. Once fully cooked, add to the tomato sauce.
  6. Cook over medium-low heat until the sauce reduces down to a thicker consistency. Tear up the fresh basil and add at the end.

Noodles

  1. Cut off each end of the zucchini, then use a mandoline or potato peeler to shave slices of the zucchini lengthwise to make long “noodles.”
  2. Add olive oil to the bottom of a saucepan (can be the same pan you used to cook the ground turkey — saves on dishes!) and cook over medium heat until the zucchini softens, making sure you add salt and pepper. (Taste along the way to make sure there’s enough salt for both the noodles and the sauce!)
  3. Once cooked, ladle sauce over noodles and finish with a handful of Parmigiano-Reggiano.

—Karell Roxas, Executive Editor

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