Hummus, Avocado, Sprout, and Beet Sandwich
Can you find fast food that is healthy?
Today is a busy day for me; I left home in a hurry and forgot to grab my lunch. I needed something that was quick and healthy. There are several fast food restaurants close to my office, but that is not where I go when I want "fast food". Fortunately, there is also a grocery store, and they have everything I need for creating a healthy "fast food" lunch.
Most fast food restaurants now have salads and other "healthy" options that you can order without animal protein, but when you look closely at the ingredients, they are not as healthy as you would think. Most fast food restaurants are happy to display the nutritional information of salads, but some restaurants separate the nutrition information of the dressing. Once you add the salad dressing, you can be well over 1,200 mg of sodium and 25 grams of added fat. I suggest asking for a little plain vinegar for your salads if you must order one at a fast food restaurant (or any other restaurant for that matter).
There is an alternative, make your own healthy fast food. There is always the option of a salad from the deli section of a grocery store, but why not make a quick sandwich? After all, sandwiches can be healthy. For my little conundrum today, I ran across the street to the grocery store and bought some whole grain bread (Dave's Killer 21 Whole Grains and Seeds), a package of prepared hummus, a prepared guacamole, broccoli sprouts, and some precooked beets in the produce section. The only ingredient listed on the package of beets was, believe it or not, "organic beets". The guacamole was Wholly Chunky Avocado, and the only ingredient was avocado, not even a hint of added salt!
All I needed for a quick and healthy lunch was a paper plate or napkin, a plastic knife, and about 90 seconds to prepare my lunch. Spread a little avocado on one slice of bread, a little hummus on the other. Slice one of the beets and place it on the one slice of bread. Spread broccoli sprouts on the other slice of bread. Slap the two slices of bread together, and I had my healthy "fast food" sandwich, and it tasted great!
Total time was 34 minutes, including walking to the store (Why drive? Exercise is good for you). If you plan lunches like this in advance, and you don't forget to bring the ingredients, you could make your lunch at work, eat your lunch, and still have time for a 30 or 40 minute walk!
Depending on the brands of packaged whole foods you use, this lunch has about 265 calories with 10 grams of protein and about 10 grams of fat (mostly from the avocado). Plus you get all of the benefits of the micronutrients, including the antioxidants and phytochemicals from the broccoli sprouts and beets. To me, that seems pretty healthy for "fast food".
Be creative, stay healthy, enjoy whole food!
For those who want a recipe, it is simple:
- 2 slices whole grain seeded bread
- 2 ounces mashed avocado
- 2 ounces hummus
- 1 small cooked beet, sliced
- 1 to 2 ounces broccoli or other type of sprout
Spread the avocado on one slice of bread. Spread the hummus on the other slice of bread. Top with sliced beets and sprouts and you have a quick and healthy sandwich.