Admin Assistance: 7 Tips to Avoid Sad Salads at Business Lunches

Posted by on Friday, April 25th, 2014 with Comments Off on Admin Assistance: 7 Tips to Avoid Sad Salads at Business Lunches Comments

Salads are awesome: you just feel healthier while you’re eating a big pile of leafy greens and crisp vegetables. They make great fare for business lunches, too, since they’re rarely messy and easy to eat while working. But if you’re a busy admin in charge of ordering salads for meetings or conferences, don’t make the mistake of choosing the wrong kind of salads — the ones that will leave your coworkers feeling unsatisfied once they clear their plates (and already planning their afternoon snacks).

depressing side salad

No fiber, no protein, no satisfaction. This is not a meal!
Image source: Flickr user Ged Carroll

When a salad is created to be low-fat and low-calorie, it’s almost always low-protein and low-fiber — which means while it may satisfy our desire to stick to a restrictive diet, it probably won’t satisfy our appetite. That’s why many people who aren’t interested in watching their waistlines may dismiss salad as “diet food”… but you can prove them wrong with your next menu selection!

Done right, a salad can offer the perfect combination of protein, fiber, and antioxidant-rich vegetables that result in long-lasting energy and productivity throughout the workday. The basic rule of whether a salad will be the genuinely healthy, hearty meal your hardworking colleagues need is right there in those first two factors: protein and fiber, the building blocks of satiety. And, of course, it needs to taste good.

With that baseline in mind, here are a few specific ways to ensure the salads you order for business lunches will result in clean plates and satisfied appetites, rather than trips to the vending machine!

salad with grilled salmon

This is much better. “Beef” up your salad with grilled salmon.
Image source: flickr user Jeffrey Zeldman

1) A lean protein is a must for a fulfilling salad. While chicken is usually the default (i.e., boring) option, consider upgrading to grilled salmon instead: it feels a little more decadent, and packs in a ton of omega-3 fatty acids that help promote cognition and focus.

farro salad

Whole grains, like faro, are excellent ways to add fiber to salads.
Image source: Flickr user Molly Elliott

2) Think outside the greens: order a round of whole grain based salads. Whole grains like farro, couscous, and brown rice taste delicious and add abundant fiber to your salads… and bonus points if you choose quinoa, which is rich in protein, as well!

3) Want to add a little creaminess without a heavy dressing? An avocado is just the ticket. In addition to monounsaturated fat (the good kind), avocados provide fiber and a little extra protein to boot.

lentil salad

Lentil salads are hearty, unexpected, and full of protein.
Image source: Flickr user jules

4) Black beans, white beans, chickpeas: beans and legumes are excellent sources of fiber and protein, and a natural addition to many salads. To really mix it up, find a Greek restaurant with a good lentil salad — packed with protein and nary a leaf of lettuce in sight, you’ll convert even your most skeptical coworkers. 

salad with hard-boiled eggs

Hard-boiled eggs are an instant protein boost to green salads.
Image source: Flickr user Meal Makeover Moms

5) Don’t forget the incredible edible salad protein… a hard-boiled egg will add seven grams, and a dose of memory-boosting choline.

6) When you’re looking for a healthy, hearty salad, go a little nuts — from walnuts to pistachios to almonds, even a handful-sized portion of nuts sprinkled atop a salad adds a respectable amount of protein and a whole lot of belly-filling fiber to your salad. 

salad with sunflower seeds

Seeds add fiber, protein, and crunch to salads.
Image source: Flickr user Fresco Tours

7) Along the same lines, certain seeds also deserve a spot on your salad. Pumpkin seeds (often called pepitas) and sunflower seeds are the most common salad addition, and both offer protein, fiber, and the focus-boosting mineral magnesium.

If you include at least two of these ingredients in each salad you order for business lunches, you’re practically guaranteed to have a table full of satisfied diners at a meeting’s end. And there’s no easier way to coordinate your newly improved salads than by using with a wide range of menus, easy online ordering, and prompt food delivery, we’re here to make life easier for busy admins like you! 

When it comes to feeding employees and coworkers, make your company's food program really count! If your workplace dining plan needs to take it up a notch — or if you don't have one at all — is here to help. From Virtual Cafeteria Service to diverse menus to local takeout & offers customizable dining solutions for every business and budget. Contact us today to get started!

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