Caesar Salad is a great lunchtime option, but the less healthy part of it – the oily croûtons and heavy dressing can often mean it’s not so great or ideal for the WLS lunchbox. But if you tinker with the croûtons and choose a light Caesar dressing then it makes a sensible and most enjoyable choice.
In this lunchbox meal idea we have taken the usual crunchy bread choice (to make the croûtons) and spritzed them with some low-fat spray or mist, dusted with seasonings and baked rather than fried. Mixed with lettuce heart, skinned and flaked mackerel, Parmesan shavings and a light Caesar dressing – you have the makings of a wonderful Caesar salad meal. You can swap the mackerel (although it has a great omega-3 rating) if you don’t like or want a lower fat alternative, for chicken or smoked salmon if preferred, or a hard-boiled/cooked egg for a veggie version.
Pack the dressing separately in a lidded pot and mix everything together to serve. I have used a ready-prepared dressing but often just a half/half yogurt and low-fat mayo mixture with a few herbs works just as well.
For an optional snack you could add a few berries in a small container.
The recipe makes a regular serving and about 2 WLS ones but this will very much depend upon your stage out of surgery, appetite and tolerance – this is just a guideline.
SMOKED MACKEREL CAESAR SALAD LUNCHBOX
50 g/2 oz ciabatta or other bread, cut into 1 cm/½ inch cubes
low-fat cooking spray or mist
¼ tsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp dried oregano or mixed herbs
½ romaine lettuce heart
75 g/3 oz smoked mackerel, skinned and flaked
1 tsp Parmesan shavings
1 tbsp light Caesar dressing (I used Tesco Healthy Living Caesar Dressing)
- Preheat the oven to 200 C/400 F/gas 6. Place the bread cubes on a baking tray and spritz liberally with low-fat cooking spray or mist. Sprinkle with the paprika and herbs and toss well to mix. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes until crisp. Allow to cool then place in a small container for the luncbox.
- Break up the lettuce and place in a lunchbox then place the mackerel and Parmesan on top.
- Place the dressing in a lidded pot in the lunchbox with the prepared croûtons. Cover and chill until required.
- Mix everything together to serve.
WLS PORTION: ½
CALORIES PER PORTION: 430
PROTEIN: 22.5 g
CARBOHYDRATE: 26.6 g
FAT: 25.8 g
Image courtesy of tesco.com