Sweet pineapple slices, crispy bacon and crunchy almonds top baby greens, along with chickpeas roasted with paprika and garlic. This Hawaiian salad lunch is easy to prep ahead of time and will keep you full through a busy work day!
I thought it would be cool to start sharing what I pack for our lunch each week. I’ve been doing this ever since Nick and I moved in together, 2 1/2 years ago. Even before that, I was always packing my lunch for school or work. I prefer the taste of homemade meals, and it’s SO much cheaper to bring your lunch!
As I work in a hospital/doctor’s office now, I find that many people rely on the work cafeteria or go out to eat for their lunches, but 90% of the time I always bring mine. And when Nick and I eat the same thing, it’s cheaper to make a giant bulk batch for the whole week.
Each week, I’ll share what I made for our lunch and how I packed it (usually on Monday but I didn’t have my game together this week). I’m always searching Pinterest for pictures of packed lunches, and sometimes they’re hard to find with specific recipes or instructions! I’m sure you’ve seen those giant graphics with 20 pictures of lunch containers. This will aim to create more lunch options and give my readers creative ideas on how to bring their lunch to work/school.
Today’s lunch includes baby greens, fresh pineapple slices, crispy bacon, roasted almonds, and chickpeas that were roasted with paprika and garlic powder. To prep this lunch, I:
- Preheated the oven to 375 and put two cooling racks side by side on a large baking sheet, and laid the bacon strips on top. Baked for about 25 minutes to make the slices extra crispy.
- Put 2 cups of chickpeas in my pressure cooker, covered with water and cooked for about 50 minutes. Feel free to use canned chickpeas here.
- Tossed the chickpeas in olive oil, paprika and garlic powder, roasted on foil in my toaster over at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.
- Sliced the pineapple.
- Put all the finished products in bags and containers, ready to assemble quickly the night before or morning of work days!
Here’s the instructions on how to put together your Hawaiian Salad!
Pineapple Hawaiian Salad: Perfect Prep Ahead Lunch Idea
- 2 1/2 cups chickpeas
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 10 cups greens: baby kale or baby spinach
- 1 pineapple, diced
- 1 1/4 cups roasted almonds
- 5 slices bacon, cooked and fat drained, crumbled
- Light ranch dressing
Preheat your oven to 400F. Toss the chickpeas in olive oil, paprika and garlic powder, spread evenly on a baking sheet lined with foil. Roast for 10 minutes at 400 degrees F. I use my toaster oven for this.
To assemble: 2 cups greens, 1/2-ish cup pineapple, 1/4-ish cup almonds, sprinkle of bacon, 1/2 cup chickpeas. Put 2 Tbsp of ranch dressing in a separate container. Fill the other spot with another fruit.
Hi! I’m Emily, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and self-taught intuitive chef. I firmly believe that cooking is the simplest and most important step we can take to improve our minds and bodies and build healthier communities. Join me and let’s bring food back to the kitchen!