Easy lunches for people on the road all day

Morning all! My husband is out most days moving cars from one end of the country to another. This involves a lot of driving, but also a lot of walking and commuting on trains, buses etc. 

He can’t carry much as the backpack he has needs to carry all the associated ‘stuff’ he needs to do the job do it needs to be lightweight and not bulky 😳

He doesn’t like sandwiches very much, will tolerate wraps and rolls, but not all the time. Has no facility to warm food up. 

I’m at a loss of what to have available for healthy lunches (he can be out 12-14 hours on a day sometimes too). 

Currently, he’s been eating cold quiche, chicken or ham rolls, the occasional wrap. Won’t eat cheese or pickle. I’ve been thinking about those ‘breakfast muffins’… Any other bright ideas?

Thanks all!


  • Emmia
    Emmia Posts: 2,961
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    edited 4 February at 11:35AM
    Pot of salad with falafel balls, boiled eggs and a separate mini pot of dressing - sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds or croutons for a bit of crunch, perhaps some mini beetroots...

    Houmous with crudités, bread sticks.
  • gwynlas
    gwynlas Posts: 1,622
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    A layered salad in a tupperware box? Think salad bar add protein, meat fish eggs nuts. carbohydrate pasta rice potato, sit anywhere and eat with a fork. Make things like flapjacks breakfast muffins mini quiches pies
  • Rosa_Damascena
    Rosa_Damascena Posts: 6,210
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    @New_in_the_fens - I like the sound of your husband's job! How do I get a job like that? :)
    No man is worth crawling on this earth.

    So much to read, so little time.
  • Desmond_Hume
    Desmond_Hume Posts: 69
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    Getting a flask is a good idea.  You can then batch cook things like chilli, curry, soup, stews. Freeze them in small portions (buy a job lot of those takeaway containers). Then all he has to do is heat them up before leaving for work, transfer to the flask and boom. Lunch. 

    In between snacks can be fruit, light BabyBel, boiled eggs.  I’d personally avoid nuts. High in calories and don’t fill you up. Fine if you’re very active but otherwise not great.  
  • Spendless
    Spendless Posts: 24,025
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    Could the backpack be changed at all? I have this one that has an insulated compartment. It's now available in a lite fabric.


    I'd also use containers that fold flat once not in use or use foil or those wraps so they can be kept in the bag taking up little space once contents are eaten. 
  • @Rosa_Damascena honestly, I wouldn’t do it. It’s a lot of hassle, pay isn’t great, a lot of admin for no extra money and the risk of getting stuck somewhere. But he seems to enjoy the freedom of it and gets to drive all sorts of vehicles! 
  • RAS
    RAS Posts: 32,461
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    edited 4 February at 1:09PM
    What sort of pickle won't he touch. Branston types or everything including pickled beets and onions? Is it taste or texture?

    I suggest trying out several options at home before he heads off into the wilds. Then he can ring the changes.

    Couscous? You can buy flavoured packs which make two portions or cheaper plain. Add whatever he likes but basically a protein, some veggies and some flavour contrasts and dressing. I nestle a small pot containing onion and tomato into the container and slice into it at the last minute and cover with lettuce leaves to shred into it. Carry any crunch additions separately. So cold roast chicken, cold sausage or hotdog, tinned fish. And try lemon, onion, olives, pickles, capers etc. Bulghur is similar.

    Tinned beans or lentils, find out which he likes as borlottis are different to chickpeas, as are lentils. My basic is a tin of drained chickpeas, oil and vinegar dressing, freshly chopped onion and tomato, a few anchovies and olives and fresh leaves. Or you could go tonno e faglio? Lentil I like to dress when warm, top with half a boiled egg and add something fishy.

    Pasta is much healthier if cooked and allowed to go cold and eaten or re-heated. Best dressed with a little oil before cooling. Again, protein, dressing, something interesting. Does he like pesto? If not use mayonaise. Can be bland so add some pickles etc on the side if you can find something he likes.

    Potato salad, go for Charlotte or similar, best dressed with oil and vinegar when warm? Add egg, fish or meat, and some strong herbs with a yoghurt dressing.

    Frittata aka Crustless quiche. 

    Put these into identical shallow containers, so he can nest the empty ones inside each other.

    I know he can't cook but you should be able to find a food flask that keeps things hot for three hours. How about hot baked beans with some cooked, sliced sausage on top. And on other days HM soup, with a crusty roll?

    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • Thank you! There are loads of great ideas here - he’s a fussy one, but I can definitely try some of these. He won’t take a flask for hot food or even soup - but this has also given me some ideas for my own lunches. I eat in the office a couple of days a week (and I’m not as picky 😂). 

    Thanks again and for your time - I needed some inspiration and you have all come through 😀
  • RAS
    RAS Posts: 32,461
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    I'd also say, TALK to him. 

    What's tomorrow going to be like? A 4 hour public transport journey followed by 6 hours drive to close by. Probably needs to be light weight with high calorie nibbles to break up the long journey? Less than 90.minutes, a drive and then a journey home? Could carry a heavier load for a much shorter time? Discuss. 

    You suggest he's a fussy eater, so it's important for you both to understand what he likes. I love a mezze plate, or what sometimes called a "picky tea." I loathe a chopped salad. I like variety, but hate everything mixed up. It may be a simple as OH finds the texture of meat cut a certain size preferable, or penne rather than fusilli. I love tomatoes but hate them stewed to mush in a mixed salad. Sometimes the solution is cherry tomatoes.

    I know someone who HATES mushrooms because they are slimy. Well, not when they are finely chopped and cooked into a stew or sauce, but it took over a decade for them to articulate that.

    Take this as an opportunity to explore what tastes and textures OH likes and dislikes. If possible spend time trying something new at home, when you can eat up the rejects?
    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
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