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What do you do for food?

Old 05-08-24, 03:56 PM
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What do you do for food?

For example, lunch at work if you can't leave and go get it. What do you pack? How do you pack it? I am curious what others do. I'm hoping to maybe get some new ideas.
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Old 05-08-24, 03:58 PM
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What kind of work do you do?
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Old 05-08-24, 04:05 PM
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Work or retired, often yogurt and apple, oranges and bananas. My local Stop and Shops sell pre-packaged one man salads, I eat those as well. Or head to Jersey Mikes for an Italian sub and Lays potato chips.
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Old 05-08-24, 04:25 PM
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For most of the last 20 years, I've been leaving a car at work and commuting on a bike. Lunch generally comes from (in order):
1. cafeteria at work
2. letting co-workers choose where they want to eat, and riding with them
3. driving to an eating place (time-consuming if your workplace is remote!)
4. TV/frozen dinners
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Old 05-08-24, 05:50 PM
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Usually bring a sandwich of some sort And keep it in the office fridge. When I had a smaller backpack I used to put it in a hard plastic container but since moving to a bigger backpack 20 years ago it seems to make it unscathed And just a brown paper bag although I do usually use bagels instead of sandwich bread. Sometimes I'll bring leftovers in hard plastic Tupperware inside a plastic bag in case it leaks. Once a week I'll treat myself to a sandwich or something at a nearby fast food or restaurant place. I used to stock up on ravioli and tuna at my last job but so far I haven't felt the urge to do that at the new job even though I have a microwave and I have plenty of space to store food. What I do now that I'm 62 is keep non sugary healthy snack food like nuts dried fruit and snack throughout the day. For the last 2 years my commute is only 6 miles compared to 9 miles for 28 years. The shorter commute plus my advancing age means my appetite is far less than what it used to be and even when I am hungry I can't seem to eat as much in one sitting. And the need to avoid acid reflux I really don't eat as much as I used to.
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Old 05-08-24, 08:09 PM
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Tons of ideas. Usually I will bring some leftovers and either heat them up or eat them cold. There are tons of neat bento boxes and insulated food containers for soups and other hot dishes. I generally go out for lunch or order in because I am usually not good enough to pack a lunch I hope to get better at that but at the moment I have some decent places to eat right across the street or a couple blocks up so I really don't worry or if I can I snack a bit and then have a heartier dinner or earlier dinner.
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Old 05-08-24, 08:56 PM
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When I worked, I kept a mini-fridge in my office, stocking it with bread, jam, peanut butter, yogurt, and fruit.
Always kept a box or two of granola or Clif Bars handy, as well.
In a pinch, I'd tag along with coworkers to lunch, or ask somebody to bring me something.
So, it sort of depends on your work layout and if you commute daily.
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Old 05-09-24, 05:39 AM
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I make my lunch the night before, usually a sandwich, a piece of fruit, maybe some nuts. Or, leftovers in a microwavable container. Put it in my lunch box (it's a soft-sided, insulated one I got from, I think, BB&B a few years ago) and put it in the fridge. In the morning, take it out of the fridge and put it in my pannier. At work, take it out of the pannier and put it in the cabinet in my office. It has been in the fridge overnight, and the lunch box is insulated, so it's fine at room temp. for a few hours until lunch time. I eat out infrequently, as a treat, usually when I've driven in for whatever reason.
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Old 05-09-24, 07:28 AM
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All of the above.

The last few years I'm driving all the way to work on Mondays. Bring plenty of lunches, leftovers, fresh veggies, spare clothes, etc. We have a large fridge at work so no problem with storage.

I also bring my bike on Mondays and go for a ride after work.
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Old 05-09-24, 10:13 AM
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I have been finding that food is my heaviest carry. I eat ALOT when I am at work. We don't get lunch breaks but are given a free prison style meal to consume while working,, alot of the guys don't eat theirs ( i dont blame them) but I for one do not turn down free food, no matter how poor the quality, so I take 1st shifts left overs and whatever the guys on 2nd are not going to eat. I pack snack foods like trail mix or peanuts as well as instant breakfast powder(I don't mix it with milk as suggested, I just poor it in my mouth and swallow it with water) and bring a couple of sandwiches. I also bring some supplements with me to ingest...Anything that won't leak into my bag, isn't too heavy and fits inside of it....most of whatever bag I bring is usually full of food and not much else. We can't take any bags into our pods so I then remove it all, use my clipboard as a tray, fill my arms full of it, and carry it to my station. Normally I don't drink anything other than water and I have access to that at my station.
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Old 05-09-24, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
What kind of work do you do?
Office. We have a small refrigerator, but I have to share it with others.
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Old 05-10-24, 01:20 AM
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My workplace is very unusual in that the closest grocery store or a restaurant is almost a mile away and the building is situated at the bottom of a dead-end cobblestone road (1.5km, 4.5% average). So, pretty much everyone brings their food from home, and I certainly do because riding up that cobblestone is never fun.

I love soups, so I tried bringing a container of thick soup to work, but that was short lived as it's messy even if it doesn't spill. What I do most of the time is cook a.. sauce?... in the evening, which I then refrigerate and use for the next couple of days - every morning I make pasta or rice or gnocchi, then put that sauce over it and that's it. Usually, the sauce is some variant of chicken/pork/beef strips, mushrooms, cut up leeks, scallions, red peppers and carrots, with a bit of either soy or tomato sauce. I don't even have to heat up the (refrigerated) sauce in the morning as the pasta/rice is hot. The whole thing takes 15 minutes tops.
I pack the food in plastic containers. I have five or six of them of various shapes and sizes, for soups, meals, fruit or nuts. In the winter, the container is wrapped in aluminum foil and, if necessary when it's really cold, a kitchen cloth, then put in the bag on top of the rear rack.
Sometimes I just make sandwiches or stop by a local pastry shop, but that's the less fun or tasty, and more boring, version.

I also always have at least two types of fruit, which I bring to work weekly and keep in a desk drawer. One is always apples - lots of them - except for maybe a month in the summer when they are replaced with peaches or apricots. The other one is the bananas, grapes or tangerines.

Now that I typed all that... *pulls an apple from the drawer*
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Old 05-10-24, 06:20 AM
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If I have access to a microwave, it's easy. I have a soft lunch bag that holds two plastic containers. I fill one with a leftover main course - curry and cauliflower rice or some other stew type thing, again over cauliflower rice (I eat low carb). The other container is salad. Chopped tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers go on the bottom and the greens on top. I tuck in a small plastic container of dressing and then close it up. After those two are in, I add an energy bar and some nuts for snacks as well as a small bottle of water that I've frozen the night before. Zips up neatly and goes in my panierre, or if I already have too much to carry, attaches by carabiner to my backpack.
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Old 05-10-24, 07:45 AM
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I only eat one meal a day around 5-6pm.
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Old 05-15-24, 11:19 AM
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I would advise against heating food in plastic containers. The link between doing so and cancer hasn't been established, but it's already too dangerously close for me. If I really want to heat something up, I'll bring a pyrex container, and yes, it's heavy, but I really don't want to eat any more plastic than I already do (inadvertently).
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Old 05-17-24, 10:11 AM
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I do a mix of things:
  • Bring left-overs of dinners I've cooked and microwave it at work
  • Pack something that's OK cold (salad, sandwich, fruit)
  • Bring soup or stew in a vacuum thermos food jar. (the good ones by Aladdin work very well) I also use the food jar to bring breakfast in the form of a frozen smoothie I made at home, consisting of:
    • 1/2 cup almond milk
    • 1/2 cup OJ
    • 1 banana
    • 1 cup Greek yogurt
    • 1 scoop protein powder
    • 1 cup frozen fruit (cherries are my favorite)
    • ↑ With this smoothie, I'm just starting to get hungry before lunch.
The key is preparing ahead of time. If not, you're stuck if you can't go out. If I bring breakfast AND lunch, it is a lot of dishes to be hauling back and forth; I wear a backpack on those days and deal with the sweat patch.

Last edited by Smaug1; 05-29-24 at 07:35 AM.
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Old 05-17-24, 12:11 PM
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bring it
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Old 05-17-24, 11:33 PM
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Most often I'd bring a serving of last night's dinner. I like the screw top Ziploc branded 2-cup containers. I will say that they tend to get discolored, stained by spaghetti sauce, melted by oil that goes past boiling in the microwave to near the plastic's melting point. Ceramic would have some advantages for warming up and cleaning but would be more likely to leak and break.

We have a cafe that is presently still being run by the couple who had it when I arrived 17 years ago. I work for the original tenant of the facility but they sent most of the business to Alabama about five years ago. The cafe business pivoted hard into catering, which they were already doing a lot. They got some government contracts for meals on wheels during Covid. The cafe has so far survived, diminished. They still have about 2/3 of the menu they did before, including a really great turkey sandwich on nut bread with avocado spread and sprouts. Their specials are often gourmet stuff from their catering that day.
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Old 05-18-24, 03:28 PM
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I use this product called Huel. Powder in bottles then use the water dispenser at work to prepare them then drink over the next hour. Game changer for me
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Old 05-18-24, 09:25 PM
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Spritz your plasticware with non-stick spray before you fill it and it won't stain or smell.

Originally Posted by Darth Lefty
Most often I'd bring a serving of last night's dinner. I like the screw top Ziploc branded 2-cup containers. I will say that they tend to get discolored, stained by spaghetti sauce, melted by oil that goes past boiling in the microwave to near the plastic's melting point. Ceramic would have some advantages for warming up and cleaning but would be more likely to leak and break.

We have a cafe that is presently still being run by the couple who had it when I arrived 17 years ago. I work for the original tenant of the facility but they sent most of the business to Alabama about five years ago. The cafe business pivoted hard into catering, which they were already doing a lot. They got some government contracts for meals on wheels during Covid. The cafe has so far survived, diminished. They still have about 2/3 of the menu they did before, including a really great turkey sandwich on nut bread with avocado spread and sprouts. Their specials are often gourmet stuff from their catering that day.
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Old 05-18-24, 09:52 PM
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Current job, I don't transport food. We have a small cafeteria, and I eat there about half the time. The other half I ride with a group going out for lunch. That's been about the last six years. Occasionally I'll ride for food, but there's a sharp little climb and a narrow RR underpass to the nearest food.

Soylent powder packs easily. My last job, I went on a Soylent kick for a while, and was having it for breakfast and lunch.

Further back, I was on a PB&J + apple for lunch routine. I did that for a lot of years. My fave was PB&J on a bagel.
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Old 05-19-24, 09:03 AM
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When I was commuting, I carried my food in an insulated rack top bag. I would make sandwiches in advance and freeze them. My lunch would include a couple of pieces of fruit, a muffin or banana bread, my sandwiches, and a cold drink. By lunchtime the sandwich would have thawed out, but the drink would still be cold. Did that for about 20 years. I could have eaten out since my office was in downtown Montreal, but I preferred to eat at my desk
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Old 05-29-24, 08:00 PM
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Even though I work in the heart of Chicago's Loop 5 days/week, with myriad lunch options surrounding me, I bring a lunch to the office 80% of the time cuz getting food from restaurants has gotten so stupid expensive (and I'm kind of a cheap bastard).

Usually it's a wrap with hummus, veggies, and cold cuts along with an apple or an orange or other fresh fruit. I transport both in a little insulated lunch bag that goes right in my pannier.

Not the most exciting answer, but it works.

And more importantly, it saves me money!!!

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Old 06-03-24, 12:30 PM
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I have loved all the ideas. Keep it going others may like reading this. I have been throwing some fruit, granola bars, and a hotpocket in my insulated lunch bag. The hot pocket is just because I'm too lazy to pre-make sandwiches right now.
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Old 06-05-24, 06:09 PM
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I bring extra food that week when I drive in, maybe leftovers, and also have a jar of peanut butter and jelly always there. I don't like to transport the food in the bike bag the day of my commute. I have a gearjammer saddle bag. I am lucky to get one commute per week in the summer, but striving for two.
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