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5 Awesome Ways to Pack Your Lunch This Week

It starts on the weekend, with the best of intentions - “This week, I’m bringing lunch!” You go to the grocery store to stock up, you splurge at the farmer’s market..then Monday afternoon rolls around, and you find yourself in line for the food truck, or trying to piece together a balanced meal at the coffee shop. 

Stop the madness! You’ll feel so much better using one (or more) of these awesome ideas for packing your lunch. 

Full disclosure: this does require a little bit of planning ahead!

1. The Bento Box
This adorable Japanese lunchbox for one traditionally holds rice, fish, and veggies, but you can put anything you want inside (ahem, leftovers from dinner), all neatly separated so nothing gets soggy!

imageImage: Just Bento

2. Salad in a Jar
Put those farmer’s market finds to good use, and ensure that you grab all your veggies on your way out the door…just remember: layering matters, or else you’ll end up with sad, wilty greens.

imageImage: Thekitchn

3. Overnight Coconut Chia Seed Pudding
Okay, so this is less as lunch than a snack, but it’s so fast and easy and nutritious, we couldn’t resist!

imageimage: Daily Garnish

4. The One-Pot Meal
If you’re lucky enough to have a full kitchen at work, whip it up at the office, but if not, make a one-pot meal the night before for dinner, bring the leftovers, and save yourself time twice!

imageimage: Food52

5. Soup Cubes (Soup Cakes?)
When in doubt, freeze it! Bring these to work with you, and you can have a bite (or a bowl) of soup whenever you want!

imageimage: muffintinmommy

What’s your favorite way to pack a lunch? Tell us: jade@diyfo.orgI

Join us THIS SUNDAY, November 3 at Westside Pavilion (10800 W. Pico Blvd.), 11:30am - 2:00pm to learn pretty ways to wrap your autumn gifts (or decorate your house)!  We’re teaming up with Papyrus to provide the materials and the know-how!
FREE with RSVP (info@diyfo.org) | Gift Bags | Treats | $10 off your Papyrus purchase

Join us THIS SUNDAY, November 3 at Westside Pavilion (10800 W. Pico Blvd.), 11:30am - 2:00pm to learn pretty ways to wrap your autumn gifts (or decorate your house)!  We’re teaming up with Papyrus to provide the materials and the know-how!

FREE with RSVP (info@diyfo.org) | Gift Bags | Treats | $10 off your Papyrus purchase

For the next few weeks, we’ll be working with Papyrus to help you give beautiful gifts…
Come learn some awesome autumn gift wrapping this Sunday, October 27 at Westfield Topanga!
RSVP requested: info@diyfo.org

For the next few weeks, we’ll be working with Papyrus to help you give beautiful gifts…

Come learn some awesome autumn gift wrapping this Sunday, October 27 at Westfield Topanga!

RSVP requested: info@diyfo.org

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(RECIPE) Perfect Coconut Granola-Crusted French Toast

Melding together brown sugar, hints of coconut, and the luxuriously comforting flavor of vanilla, this French toast is pure heaven.  Our recipe is very scalable and can be adapted to your tastes (and of course, you can switch out the kind of granola, or leave it out entirely), but the recipe below yields the most wonderfully rich custardy French toast, with the right amount of crunch on the outside. 

What You Need:

  • 4 slices of bread (fewer, if they’re thick slices)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tbs. white sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut granola (our recipe is below)
  • 2 tbs. butter
  • Pecans and maple syrup to taste

What You Do:

  1.  In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together, egg, milk, vanilla, and sugar.  
  2. Soak bread in the mixture until all of the liquid in the bowl has been absorbed, or until bread is saturated. 
  3. In the meantime, spread granola onto a small plate.  When bread is saturated, lightly coat each piece with granola, placing each slice on the bed of granola, patting gently, and then turning, to coat.
  4. On medium-high heat,  melt butter in a skillet.  When butter begins to bubble, place soaked bread in skillet, and cook until golden-brown (about 2 to 3 minutes on each side).
  5. Garnish with pecans and maple syrup (and if you’re us, more butter!)

Coconut Granola Recipe

  • 2 cups uncooked oats (regular or quick-cooking will work)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 tbs. honey
  • 1 tbs. oil (coconut, vegetable, olive, canola, all work well)
  • optional: 1 egg white, beaten (use only if you want to make granola clusters)

Preheat oven to 275°

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients.  When combined, gently mix in honey and oil (if using egg white, mix in after oil and honey are incorporated).
  2. Spread the oat mixture onto a greased cookie sheet, and bake until browned (about 35 - 45 minutes), strirring and turning the mixture every 15 minutes to prevent scorching.
  3. Remove from oven, stir gently to loosen any of the mixture that may be stuck to the pan.  If using egg white, be very careful not to break apart any clusters that have formed.
  4. Let cool thoroughly, undisturbed, and store in an airtight container.  Use it to coat the French toast (above), or to top Greek yogurt and fruit. Enjoy!
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