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Save time and money with these easy and tasty workweek lunch meal prep ideas

Talia Koren, author of "The Workweek Lunch Cookbook," joined New Day to share a recipe for roasted chickpea, avocado, and sweet potato wraps! #newdaynw

The last thing you want to think about when you're hustling to get out the door in the morning is what to bring for lunch.

Talia Koren, author of "The Workweek Lunch Cookbook," knows how to make meal prep not only easy but tasty too! She joined New Day to talk about the book and share a recipe.

Roasted Chickpea, Avocado, & Sweet Potato Wraps

What makes the perfect wrap? It’s all about having a variety of textures. I’ve been perfecting lunch wraps for years, and this one is “the best one ever” according to my partner. I promise these won’t get soggy on you either! Here, we have sweet smokey sweet potatoes, roasted chickpeas lightly mashed, creamy avocado, and crunchy kale and radishes. What takes the flavors in this wrap to the next level is the citrus worked into the chickpeas and avocado. You can eat this wrap cold or at room temperature, making it perfect for lunch on the go.

Prep time: 15 minutes | Cook time: 40 minutes | Servings: 3

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 sweet potato, chopped into thick fries
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground pepper
  • 1 (15-oz [425-g]) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 3 cups (268 g) chopped kale
  • 1 large avocado, pitted
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) lemon juice, divided
  • 3 large 10-inch (25-cm) tortillas
  • 1 cup (232 g) hummus
  • 6 radishes, chopped in half and sliced
  • Hot sauce, optional for serving

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C).
  2. To a mixing bowl, add the chopped sweet potato, half of the olive oil, cinnamon, cumin, salt, and pepper. Mix well with a wooden spoon or your hands. Pour the sweet potato onto a baking sheet and spread out the “fries” so they’re not touching each other. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes on a lower rack, flipping halfway until the “fries” are tender and have darkened in color on the outside.
  3. To the same bowl you used before, add the chickpeas, remaining olive oil, paprika, curry powder, and salt to taste. Pepper is optional. Mix with a wooden spoon so the chickpeas are coated in the spices. Pour the chickpeas onto another baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes on a middle or upper rack. They’ll be a little crispy and darker in color when they’re finished.
  4. Let the sweet potato and chickpeas cool down to room temperature when finished.
  5. Meanwhile, bring 4 to 5 cups of water to boil and add a few big pinches of salt. Get a bowl of very cold water (it’s best if you can add a few ice cubes) ready to go next to the stove. When the water is boiling, carefully add the chopped kale and let it cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until it’s vibrantly green. Drain the water from the pot using a strainer and transfer the kale to the bowl of cold water. This stops it from cooking more.
  6. Lay a clean kitchen towel on the counter and spread the blanched kale on it to dry before assembling your wraps.
  7. Mash the avocado in a bowl. Add half of the lemon juice and a pinch of salt and mix. In another bowl, mash the cooked chickpeas gently. Add the remaining lemon juice and mix.
  8. Let’s wrap! Lay a tortilla down on a flat clean surface. Spread one-third of the hummus on the lower third of the wrap horizontally, in the shape you want your wrap to be in. Think of it like you’re “outlining” the shape of your wrap with the hummus. Place one-third of the kale on the hummus, followed by an even layer of sweet potatoes — make sure they’re not piled on top of each other! Add one-third of the mashed avocado on the potatoes, followed by one-third of the lightly mashed chickpeas. Top it off with a layer of sliced radishes.
  9. Rolling the wrap: With your hands on either side of the wrap, fold the bottom of the wrap over the filling — it’s okay if it doesn’t cover the filling completely. Then fold the two sides over the edges of the filling. This is the tricky part — with the sides folded in, fold the wrap and filling completely over away from you. Adjust to tuck in the sides and keep rolling until you’re out of tortilla. This takes practice! Repeat the last two steps two more times to make all three wraps.

Storage, reheating, and serving notes: These wraps can last in the fridge for up to four days and they’re not freezer friendly. Store in an airtight container in the fridge until you’re ready to eat! These can be eaten cold, room temperature, or warmed in the microwave or on the stove.

Note: If you’re using gluten-free wraps, store the filling and tortillas separately and wrap right before you eat. Gluten-free tortillas tend to break when stored overnight as a wrap.

Plus, executive producer Joseph Suttner joined Amity in studio to demonstrate another recipe from the cookbook for a chipotle black bean avocado quinoa salad!

Chipotle Black Bean Avocado Quinoa Salad 

Grain bowls are the real MVP of no-reheat lunches. There are endless ways to customize them. This bowl is satisfying, has a little bit of a kick, and requires almost no cooking!

This salad would be a great base for extra protein you have from other meals too. You can eat it cold, room temperature, or slightly warm if you'd like!

Prep Time: 15 minutes I Cook Time: 15 minutes I Servings: 3

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups (112 g) quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 tsp salt, divided
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper, divided
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder (sub 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced)
  • 1 1/2 cups (320 ml) vegetable broth (sub water)
  • 1 (15-oz [420-ml) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup (149 g) cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • 2/3 cup (96 g) chopped red onion
  • 3 radishes, chopped in half and sliced
  • 1 cup (16 g) chopped cilantro (keep the stems)
  • 3 cups (100 g) chopped spinach
  • 3 scallions, white and green ends chopped and separated
  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • 1 lime, halved
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped and seeded
  • 3 tsp (15 ml) adobo sauce (from can of peppers)
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) water, to thin
  • Tortilla chips, for serving

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Add the quinoa, half of the salt and pepper, chili powder, garlic powder, and vegetable broth to a pot over high heat. 
  2. Bring the pot to a boil, then cover and reduce to a simmer. Allow the quinoa to simmer for 12 to 15 minutes, or until it has absorbed all of the water and fluffs easily with a fork. 
  3. Meanwhile, add the black beans, cherry tomatoes, red onion, radishes, cilantro, spinach, and green ends of the scallions to a bowl. Add the chopped avocado on top and squeeze half a lime directly onto the avocado. Mix gently.
  4. To a food processor, add the white ends of the scallions, chipotle peppers. adobo sauce, mayonnaise, and water. Add the remaining salt and pepper. Blend until smooth and creamy. You should still see some small pieces of chipotle pepper. 
  5. Add the quinoa and chipotle sauce to the bowl with the veggies and juice from the remaining lime half. Toss everything together. Divide the mixture among three meal prep containers. Keep the tortilla chips on the side until you eat.
  6. Storage, Reheating, and Serving Notes: This meal lasts for up to 4 days in the fridge. It's not freezer friendly. You can eat this meal cold, at room temperature, or heated in the microwave or on the stove.

Segment Producer Joseph Suttner. Watch New Day Northwest 11 AM weekdays on KING 5 and streaming live on KING5.com. Contact New Day.