It’s funny how vacation talk is always followed by of Back-to-School. This post is no exception!
I was recently on vacation in Colorado.
Yep, someone’s got to enjoy those cool temperatures and even a little rain & fog when it’s over 100 degrees for many days back in Texas…and I’m lucky enough to have a sister who has a Colorado cabin at 11,000 feet!
Anyway, my main goal for this vacation, besides trying to disconnect from being too busy, was to hike as much as possible. Which means, we needed to pack lunches. <Thinking about back-to-school, it’s always a good idea to get creative in the kitchen when you’ve got hungry school kids to feed!> I’ve made it a personal goal to limit processed meats over the last few years, but sometimes I make exceptions. (I’m slightly flexible in my standards–not one of those “can’t eat that so I guess I’ll starve kind of gals…) Luckily I didn’t really have to stray too far from my eating ideals because my health-conscious sister found a less-processed meat that was yummy as well.
I would say that really the most important part of a sandwich is the bread. I’m constantly in search for a grainy, but not cardboard-y whole grain bread. I’ve tried Dave’s Killer Bread when visiting Oregon, but it was always just a little too thickly sliced for my taste. Now, Dave’s Killer Bread is available in thin-sliced. Whoo-Hoo!! And it also has magically appeared at Sam’s and Costco. (Because paying $5 for a loaf at my local healthier food store was a bit much, don’t you agree?)
We were out of mayo and were not going to drive the 45 minute round-trip to the store, so we subbed guacamole on one side and Ranch dressing on the other. (Confession–I think pretty much everything tastes great with Ranch!) I usually keep fresh avos at home since they’re one of my all time favorite foods, so I haven’t actually tried the ready-made guac.
Sis was prepared and honestly it was pretty good! It comes in those small containers so you can eat the whole thing easily with a friend and a few tortilla chips.
Next up–cheese. Cheese is not only a good-for-you food, it also adds a certain creaminess to a sandwich.
We used Kraft American (which by the way, contains no artificial preservatives or colors, contain an excellent source of calcium and a good source of vitamin D), but any cheese will do!
I love lots of veggies on my sandwich. I had the most fantastic sandwiches when visiting Australia and New Zealand. Down Under, they know how to build a great one, with greens, sliced cucumbers, grated carrots, corn–you name it! I always keep that image of perfect sandwich from Down Under when making mine. We put what we had–arugula and thinly sliced cucumber. English cucumber is best for sandwiches because they are firmer and not as juicy.
Though I love tomatoes, they make the sandwich slippery and soggy so don’t go well on sandwiches you pack up.
Food safety is a must when packing a protein-filled sandwich (with the exception of peanut butter, which is also perfect for school or a hike!) I like to partially freeze water bottles and use them to keep sandwiches cold. And there’s nothing better than ice-cold water to refresh during a hike (or recess!)
I hope my tips help keep you and your kids happy and healthy!
Happy Trails to You…Until We Meet Again!