Hey, earth day is only a day away, but did you know that the whole month of April is actually Earth Month? The great folks at Silk have been celebrating all month long by teaming up with bloggers around the internet and asking them to share their tips for reducing, recycling and reusing. Now, it's my turn and I have a tasty swap for you inspired by all the lunches I pack around here!
We are really lucky to live in a part of the country where we have curbside recycling service. There are recycling drives for just about everything from electronics to Christmas trees on a monthly basis. We even have pharmaceutical drives to help us clear out our medicine cabinets in an earth friendly way. So, when I was faced with really getting to the root of where the bulk of our waste as a family comes from it was glaringly obvious - lunches.
Both my kids and my husband take their lunches to school and work practically every day. We have been really strategic about saving canvas bags for carrying our food in and carrying reusable water bottles, but I have still been using items like plastic wrap and plastic baggies on the regular. What the heck? Honestly, I don't have a good answer as to why those things still make it into their lunches. I'm pretty embarrassed to even be admitting this and now that I have had to call myself out on the internet I plan on eliminating our wasteful lunch habits for good.
After a little research I learned that the average size family goes through over 500 plastic baggies a year, just for lunches? It's the truth - that is A LOT of plastic bags. Just the simple act of swapping out those disposable items for reusable ones is a huge step towards a healthier, happier planet! Right? So, this month I decided to invest in a few items to really green up our lunches! I stocked up on meal sized mason jars for Todd so he can take layered salads and burrito bowls, reusable Bee's Wraps to eliminate the need for any plastic wrap on the fruit bandit's sandwiches and washable snack bags for chips, nuts and treats.
It doesn't take me any more time in the morning to pack an earth friendly lunch and I can feel good knowing that we have completely eliminated the need for the extra plastic we were using around here on a daily basis! This Vegan Mason Jar Taco Salad is one of Todd's favorite mid-day meals and I love them because I can prep a lot at one time and store them in the fridge for easy grab-n-go lunches all week without a lot of extra effort.
Looking for a Taco Mason Jar Salad that has meat in it? Look no further, we found one that we love and we think you will too!Print
Vegan Mason Jar Taco Salad
- Prep Time: 5 mins
- Total Time: 5 mins
- Yield: 1 serving 1x
- ¼ cup roasted poblano dressing, recipe follows
- ¼ cup shredded carrots
- ½ cup beans, black beans or pintos would both work
- ½ cup cooked rice
- ¼ cupraw walnut taco meat
- ⅛ cup chopped peppers, I used red bell peppers and a few jalapeno slices
- fill to top of jar with a mixture of shredded Tuscan kale and Romaine lettuce
- lime wedges
- Layer a pint and a half sized Mason jar starting with the roasted poblano dressing then carrots, black beans, rice, raw walnut taco meat, peppers, greens and lime wedges. Seal tightly and refrigerate until ready to eat,
- Pour the contents of the jar into a bowl and toss to combine the dressing with the vegetables. Squeeze lime over the top and enjoy.
Roasted Poblano Dressing
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 8 mins
- Total Time: 23 mins
- Yield: a little over 2 cups
- 1 ½ cups raw unsalted cashews (soaked 30 minutes, if you think about it)
- ¾ cup Silk unsweetened original cashew milk
- 1 roasted poblano pepper
- 1 small garlic clove minced
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ¼ cup minced red onion
- ¾ tablespoons fresh lime juice
- salt, to taste (about 1 tsp.)
Roast the poblano pepper.
- Place under the broiler until blistered on all sides. (time will vary depending on the heat of your broiler). When it’s fully blistered, remove and place in a bowl and cover (not touching) with plastic wrap or a towel. Set aside for 15 minutes or so, until it’s cool enough to handle. Using your fingers, slide off the skin and remove the stem and seeds.
Make the dressing
- Blend roasted poblano and all ingredients in a high powered blender (best results from a vitamix or similar). Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking.
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