Vegetarian Brown Bag Lunch Ideas

Are you a vegatarian that wants to start taking your lunch to school or work but have no idea what to make besides grilled cheese sandwiches? Try some of these vegetarian brown bag ideas.

When some people think of vegetarian lunches, they envision a bag of sliced carrots or celery and a glass of water. Some of the most interesting dishes ever created have not one shred of beef, poultry or fish in them. Sure, you can bring in peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every single day to maintain your vegetarian lifestyle, but why not spice things up and create some brown bagged lunches that will have even your meat-eating friends and co-workers begging for a taste.

* Liven up your tired old spaghetti with tomato sauce and try a pesto pasta instead. Pesto can be prepared far in advance and even frozen in ice cube trays to reheat when needed. Take two cups of fresh basil, six garlic cloves, 1/3 cup walnuts or pine nuts, 2/3 cups extra virgin olive oil and 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Combine all of these ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend at high speed until all of the ingredients are chopped and mixed. This will make three cups of pesto, but you will only need 1/3 cup for this specific recipe. Boil up some angel hair pasta and drain. Chop up half of a small red onion, 3 large tomatoes, and one bell pepper. Combine all of the ingredients and toss.

* Nowadays, you see sandwich wraps everywhere you go. Why not create your own vegetarian wrap. Take a flour tortilla and fill with grilled vegetables (any grilled vegetables will do, like zucchini and onions), shredded cheddar cheese, sliced avocado, lettuce and your favorite dressing (like balsamic vinaigrette, caesar dressing or mayonnaise). Roll up the tortilla and put some plastic wrap around it. Stick a toothpick in the center so that it can maintain its shape.

* In the mood for a great-tasting salad? Try making yourself a Cobb salad for your lunch. Tear up some iceberg or romaine lettuce. Throw in a few sliced hard-boiled eggs. Drain and rinse a can of black beans and mix in. Add a small can of southwestern flavored corn, some shredded cheddar cheese and sliced green onions. Mix with your favorite salad dressing.

* Do you love Italian Panini sandwiches? Take some baguette bread and slice it in half. Spread some goat cheese on both sides of the bread (you can buy this at your specialty grocery store). For your filling you will need both red and yellow roasted bell peppers, cut into thin strips. Add a few fresh parsley leaves on top and you have got a tasty sandwich.

* Very few people can resist the temptation of pizza. Take some English muffins and cut them in half. Toast them and top with some tomato sauce (flavored spaghetti sauce will also work). Sprinkle on some mozzarella cheese and add some of your favorite vegetables, like black or green olives, bell peppers, grilled onions or fresh tomato slices. You can heat these up in the microwave for a minute or two or until the cheese begins to melt. When it is finished, sprinkle with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese for a tasty pizza alternative.

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