The picture above has literally been what I have been eating for lunch every day lately + some un-pictured fruit/nuts and it has been perfection! I honestly always struggle with lunches, I really have the whole breakfast/dinner/snack situation down to a science but when it comes to lunches, I have just never seemed to be proactive enough to get perfect salads ready to go before I need to run out the door in the morning. Now when I was in Grad School sometimes I would have enough time to run home and make a quick smoothie bowl for lunch which was my go to favorite, however now that I am spending on average 10+ hours/day working in the hospital, I really need to plan ahead.
Enter roasted vegetables. I have made these in the past on various occasions for lunch, but never had I really thought about committing to making them my lunch staple. With lots of end of summer veggies streaming out of our family garden, I recently got back into roasting up big batches of veggies on Sunday and having them mixed into my meals throughout the week. With my busy schedule these days, this has been a perfect, easy way to keep my nutrition on target, without a ton of thought or energy.
PERFECTLY ROASTED VEGGIES
- One large zucchini
- One large summer squash
- Two cups of brussels sprouts
- One eggplant
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 2 large tomatoes
- 3 cups green beans (fresh! not canned!)
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
- Chop all veggies into roughly 1/4 inch thick pieces. I will typically switch up how I slice/chop my veggies. Sometimes I slice them length wise, and sometimes I chop them into squares. Really it is your own personal preference. Just remember that the cook time may vary depending on how thin your slice your veggies.
- Dice garlic finely.
- Once all of your veggies are chopped, place them in a baking dish (I have a bunch of rectangular glass dishes) and lightly toss them with olive oil. Usually I will place the veggies in four different dishes (zucchini+summer squash; tomatoes+green beans, eggplant+brussels sprouts, and sweet potatoes). I separate them this way based on how long it takes them to cook. Because the veggies take varying times to cook, this way I can place all of the dishes in the oven, and remove them according to their specific cook time.
- Sprinkle some salt and your garlic over the veggies. Toss again.
- Place in the oven for 25-50 minutes. The tomatoes and green beans usually take between 25-30 minutes. The eggplant and brussels sprouts take between 35-40, the zucchini and summer squash take roughly 25-30, and the sweet potatoes can take anywhere from 30-50 minutes depending on how thick you chopped them.
- You will know your veggies are cooked when they are soft in the center and slightly browned.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool before packing into individual containers for lunch/dinner sides.
Note: If your veggies seem a little dry when you remove them from the oven it is sometimes needed to lightly toss in olive oil once more, this usually isn't something I have to do, but depending on how oily you like your veggies you may want to give this a try.