Brown-bag lunch tips

September 12, 1990

Tired of the same old bag lunch?

Here are some suggestions from Swift-Eckrich foods. Their free booklet, "Club Butterball's Ultimate Guide to the Club," contains ideas for creating eye-opening sandwiches with new recipes and combinations of tasty breads, spreads, fillers, greens and garnishes, all found in an easy-to-read chart. Write to Swift-Eckrich, Club Butterball, 4100 South Laflin, Chicago, Ill., 60609.

*Try a variety of breads including rye, pumpernickel, whole-wheat, multigrain or bran in such forms as pita pockets, Kaiser rolls, bagels, English muffins or rice cakes. Not only are most of these breads high in energy, vitamins and iron, but they are also low in fat.

*Add a slice of cheese for extra flavor. Natural cheeses such as cheddar or Swiss generally contain less sodium than process cheeses like American or cheese spreads.

*Have an assortment of ready-made snacks on hand. Peanuts, raisins, cheese and crackers, sunflower seeds, banana chips, dried fruit, granola and unsalted whole-wheat pretzels make great snacks.

*For a healthy treat with less fat and sodium, try side salads made with dry beans and peas such as lentils, navy and black beans. A little onion, parsley and a simple vinaigrette make this high-fiber, protein-packed salad the perfect lunch partner.

*Perk up dull sandwiches -- without extra calories -- with these low-fat, low-sodium extras: sliced cucumbers, radishes, onion, zucchini, spinach leaves, shredded carrots, alfalfa sprouts, green peppers or broccoli.

*Don't limit your bread spread to mayonnaise, butter or margarine. Try different kinds of mustards including French, German, Chinese and honey, as well as ketchup, tartar sauce, cream cheese, ricotta cheese or another cheese of your choice.

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