Simple No Cook Healthy Lunch Idea

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How are those New Year's Resolutions going to get back in shape and start eating well? I've been doing pretty well. Not perfect, but well. Life isn't perfect, though--there will be birthday parties and the occasional night when you just throw up your hands in frustration and order a pizza. I can't beat myself up about those things, because they ARE going to happen; I just can't let it derail me from my ultimate goal. I also know what to eat, but what I really need to work on is mindful eating.

I need to step away from the computer when I eat. I need to start paying attention to my body and my actual hunger signals again. I'm always trying to do three things at once, so it's a hard lesson to learn, but one of my favorite tricks to make myself slow down and focus is eating tricky food. If I have to open, crack, and peel my food, I can't very well be typing while I do it! Plus, those foods tend to be a lot more wholesome, anyway. This is one of my very favorite snacks. It's quick to throw together (no cooking! No prep!) but it's slow food for eating (which gives me time to figure out I'm full).

Tangerines, soft goat cheese, pistachios, and a tall glass of sparkling mineral water. It sounds a little odd, I know, but think of those classic pairings with goat cheese: figs and honey. Tangerines have that same sweetness that goes so well with the smooth tang of the goat cheese. Smear a bit of the goat cheese on a segment of tangerine, and enjoy a bite of juicy, fresh bliss.

The tangerines from our tree are just now ripening, and I'll tell you, there's nothing better in the world for lunch than this combo of pistachios, tangerines, and goat cheese when the fruit has been picked right off the tree and is still warm from the sun.

The pistachios are the perfect crunchy and salty foil to the sweet of the tangerine and the smooth of the goat cheese. Man, I love salty treats. And the fact that pistachios have the moniker "The Skinny Nut" because they're lower in calories (and higher in fiber and protein) than other nuts? Huge bonus! They're so good that I'd eat them anyway, but it's nice, for once, that something I love to eat is also good for me. ;-)

My girls both absolutely love to eat pistachios, too (and goat cheese, and tangerines, or "baby oranges" as my little one calls them). Plus, the shells make the very best boats for bunny toys, too!

We have a long history of playing with our pistachios in this family. I snapped this photo when my 11 year old was just five. You know you've watched too much Top Chef when your five year old (who had been eating pistachios) comes back from futzing around in the kitchen and proudly presents "Stuffed Pistachio Shells, Seven Ways." For the curious, they were stuffed with edamame, quinoa, corn kernels, saltines, pretzels, sugar cookies, and crushed candies. Very nicely plated, if I do say so myself.

Do you love pistachios as much as we do? Enter the Year of the Skinny Nut sweepstakes for a chance at winning a year's supply of pistachios!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido

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