Friday, 7 October 2011

Vegan MoFo 2011 #7: 'Vegan Lunch Box'

Vegan Lunch Box
Jennifer McCann, Little "S" Press, 2006

Vegan Lunch Box

In my final year of uni I didn't have lectures, instead my time was spent out in various vet clinics doing rotations. I was enjoying my new kitchen and was keen to have the coolest lunches possible. I had heard of Vegan Lunch Box from a friend, and checked out the blog. Totally adorably lunches. And yes, they were for a young school child, but whatever. Everyone deserves cute lunches!

Recipes in the book are arranged into lunch menus, and menus are arranged into chapters. These chapters include Quick and Easy, Rise and Shine, Ready and Waiting, Lunch Box Adventure and Special Occasions. There is also an allergen free index if you are looking for recipes suitable for certain dietary needs. The book is paperback. There is a centre sections of photos, with 16 colour photos in total.

I will share some of my favourites with you from this book! This will be a little different, given they are presented as menus in the book. So I am presenting the five star menu list! These were given five stars because of fullness and how much I liked the combination of dishes, not all recipes themselves were five stars (though they were all four stars at least). Please note that I took these to act as my main lunch, and packed several other snacks to keep me going throughout the day. I am a hungry lady, after all. Sometimes the snacks will appear in the photos, and sometimes not.

Quick and Easy Menu Page 22

Lunch Nibbles; Easy Potato Salad; grapes; Back-To-School Chocolate Chip Cookies; Soy milk

This lunch box includes:

- Lunch Nibbles (Vegan deli slices and vegan cheese with crackers. I used that Sanitarium stuff that comes in a roll, with squares of Tofutti cheese slices and some oat crackers)

- Easy Potato Salad, which is a pretty good potato salad, though not the most outstanding I've made. Capers make a nice addition.
Easy Potato Salad

- Grapes

- Back-To-School Chocolate Chip Cookies. These are pretty soft cookies. They make a bunch and are good for a crowd.
Back-to-School Chocolate Chip Cookies

- Non-dairy milk (in the thermos)

Quick and Easy Menu Page 33


This lunch box includes:

- Pups In Blankets, which are easy and delicious and oh I want some now. They are great fresh out of the oven, but travel well and are still really nice at room temperature or even straight from the fridge!
Pups In Blankets

- Ketchup or Mustard (I packed both!)

- Cooked frozen vegetables. I was skeptical about this, but it is actually oddly tasty. No need to even cook, just pack the night before and they will be thawed when you are ready for them at lunch time.

- Creme-Filled Sandwich Cookies. AKA Oreos.

- Non-dairy milk.

Quick and Easy Menu Page 50

Beans & Dogs; cucumber cresents and peas; Chocolate Banana Pudding; beetroot chips

This lunch box includes:

- Beans and Dogs. I don't think I need to explain why this is awesome. And why yes, I did take these in an adorable pink little thermos with butterflies.
Beans & Dogs

- Baked Pita Chips (I actually took pre-purchased beetroot chips in this photo).

- Cucumber Crescents and Edamame (I have peas here, as I couldn't find edamame).

- Chocolate Banana Pudding. A crappy photo, but an awesome pudding. Banana slices topped by chocolate pudding. The end!
Chocolate Banana Pudding

Quick and Easy Menu Page 53

Grilled Pepperoni Sandwich; tomato sauce; Broccoli Piccata; nectarine; candy

This lunch box includes:

- Grilled Pepperoni Sandwich. Awesome! I took this to a place that had a sandwich press. Don't forget to take some alfoil to press yours in, because no one ever cleans the cheese or meat juices off communal sandwich presses! Gross, omnis!
Grilled Pepperoni Sandwich

- Tomato Sauce

- Broccoli Piccata. My first ever piccata experience!
Broccoli Piccata

- A nectarine

- Vegan candy (I have some squares of vegan coconut ice).

Rise and Shine Menu Page 106

Lunch Box Fondue; Assorted Fondue Dippers; apple chunks; dark chocolate

This lunch box includes:

- Lunch Box Fondue. Amazing! I just gave it a quick zap in the microwave before lunch (this was before my nifty pink thermos), but it is good cold too.
Lunch Box Fondue

- Assorted fondue dippers. Mine included carrots, celery, grape tomatoes and steamed broccoli.

- Apple chunks. Also great for dipping in the fondue!

- Dark Chocolate Squares. Lindt is where it's at.

Ready and Waiting Menu Page 174

Broccoli Calzone; Sneaky Momma's Tomato Dipping Sauce; apricots; tea bread

This lunch box includes:

- Broccoli Calzones. These were easy to make, the dough behaved perfectly.
Broccoli Calzones

- Sneaky Momma's Tomato Sauce For Dipping

- Fresh apricots

- Aplet or Cotlet. Apparently some sort of jellied fruit candy. I took some tea bread instead.

Here are some other lunch boxes I have made that scored the five star rating, but that don't have photos.

Rise and Shine:
-Menu Page 74: Easy Pasta and Beans, watermelon, baby carrots, Nut and Seed Butter Cookies, non-dairy milk
-Menu Page 78: Sausage Biscuits, Perfect Hash Browns, ketchup, vanilla soy yoghurt with frozen, mixed berries, Greg's Granola, OJ
-Menu Page 90: Tofu Fish Sticks, Tater Tots, ketchup, lightly steamed broccoli, grapefruit Segments
-Menu Page 112: Vegan chicken nuggets, baked potato chips, Raw Veggie Shapes, Cherry Chip Brownies, non-dairy milk

Ready and Waiting:
-Menu Page 160: Mini-Wellingtons, peas and carrots, pear, sugar wafer cookies, non-dairy milk

And here is a list of some recipes that were five star recipes, though not in five star lunch boxes!

Pumpkin Carob Chip Muffins (I used chocolate chips)
Sweet Potato Oven Fries
Blueberry-Lemon Mini-Scones
Cornish Pasties

This book is pretty fun, and gives you some very unique lunches that will make your co-workers impressed! It is a bit fiddly though, getting everything assembled, so these days I normally just take either a salad or some stew or some wraps/sandwiches or some left-overs to work, something that is one-dish. But when I have more time, I hope to slowly continue to make these quirky little lunch boxes.

What do you take for lunch?

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post


Another one of my childhood kitties, this is Patches. He was huge and gentle.


  1. Aw Patches! Cute!

    I'm loving the trip through lunch memory lane! I've been curious about that series of books, very cute lunches!

    I don't make lunches nearly enough.

  2. You did have the coolest lunches ever. I always end up having last nights dinner leftovers for my lunch.
    I'm loving the look of those calzones.
    Awww, Patches looks like he was a special fur baby.

  3. I love this mofo theme of yours! I wish I could be that creative and pack lunches everyday (I always have lunch at home). I usually eat burgers or sandwiches for lunch, or hummus with pita chips and vegetables.

  4. This was one of my first ever cookbooks and one I still use often for the girls. We invested in laptop lunchboxes. Best evah.

  5. Those lunches look great. I think I might have to get this cookbook because my husband's always trying to come up with new ideas of what to take to work.

  6. I am loving the old photos of cats you've had :)

    I don't have this book but I've always loved the idea of filling a lunch box but like you said it can be a bit finicky and time consuming.

    I usually take dinner leftovers for lunch along with a banana for a snack and I always have rice thins & tahini at work if I'm ever in need of an extra snack or I don't have lunch.