What to make for an office lunch box is a big headache every day. And because of the lockdown, we have become out of touch too. But do not worry. I will share some healthy, nutritious, quick, and easy lunch box recipes to ease your life. Check out all my lunch box recipes here.
You must try this vegetarian rice recipe. It is easy, quick, healthy, and very tasty. Perfect for your office lunch box and also for dinner too. There is minimal chopping involved which is just perfect for busy mornings or even when you want something quick after a hectic day at work. Isn’t it? Also, it has rice, a lot of veggies, and Punjabi wadi – everything together in one recipe which makes it balanced and nutritious.
I never had this recipe while growing up. In fact, I never even heard of this recipe. But recently, one of my Instagram friends told me about this recipe and it sounded quite nice to me. I asked for the recipe and she shared her Punjabi wadi pulao recipe with me. It just made me so excited to try but I didn’t know how will it taste or if Jatin will like it or not. One day, we both were going for a weekend getaway and if you know me well, you know how much I like to cook different food items when we travel. Our staple road trip menu is hummus with buns 🙂 We like this combination.
So, on this small road trip, Jatin wanted hummus and pretzels. So, I thought I will make this Pulao for myself. Since I was trying for the first time, I added a few pieces of wadis to it. It tasted quite good. Even Jatin liked it a lot and we both finished it in a few minutes. Then I decided to share this recipe with all of you. It is not just tasty but very quick and easy to prepare. That makes it perfect for lunch and dinner too. Also, it is an easy way to finish the wadis at home before they expire 😀
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It is always a rush when you have to leave for the office in the morning. And then we tend to ignore the most important thing – our meals. Now we also have the option to buy food from the cafeteria or any restaurant. But, nothing can match the satisfaction and fulfillment of a home-cooked meal. With home-cooked food, you also know what is going inside your body. And don’t worry, with a little bit of preparation, making lunch box for office can be made easy.
Here are a few things which I follow:
1 – Meal Planning
This is such a Time Saver. I am doing it for years now and my life becomes so much easier when I know what to cook every day. I don’t prepare anything for the entire week but I make sure to plan my meals for the entire week. Obviously, it changes depending on our mood and appetite. But when I have the weekly meal plan list ready, I know what to buy from the grocery stores and I know what to cook the next day.
I don’t make an elaborate plan. Just mention the weekly meals in my Google Keep. Try this. Trust me, it will ease your life.
2 – Preps a day before
When your meal planning is done and you have the groceries for the week, you can simply check a night before about what you need to cook tomorrow. If there is any preparation that may take some time, do it before going to the bed. You will feel such a relief the next day.
Cut Veggies: If there is an elaborate chopping of veggies needed for any recipe, I try to do that the night before. But in this recipe, you don’t need to do much chopping. It can be easily done in the morning. Otherwise, chop before you go to bed.
Soak Lentils/Rice: For dals (lentils) and rice, I always prefer soaking them at least for 30 minutes. It ensures faster cooking and better absorption of nutrients. I mostly wake up early so I soak them in the morning. But, if you don’t have time, soak them before going to the bed.
IS THIS RECIPE VEGAN?
Yes. Of course.
This vegetable pulao recipe is vegan and totally plant-based. Generally, some ghee is added in pulao at the end for some extra flavor but I don’t add it. Sometimes, I add plant-based butter once the pulao is cooked. It adds a nice touch to the recipe.
This pulao tastes good with some boondi raita on the side and if you are a vegan, you can use plant-based curd. I prefer soy curd.
HOW TO SERVE THIS PULAO?
You can serve this pulao with any pickle or curd. I served it with a quick and easy amla fry. Amla is in season and it is quite healthy for our body. You must include amla in your diet. I shared a video on 5 Recipes of Amla. You must check that out. It has some interesting recipes of amla which you can easily eat.
I also made a quick Boondi raita which is simple and tastes quite good with this veg wadi pulao. It also balances the spiciness of the pulao. You must try it.
MORE OFFICE LUNCH BOX RECIPES
Now you are all ready to make this delicious meal for your Indian office lunch box recipe. It is quick, easy, and very tasty. So, grab all the ingredients because you are ready to make a happy meal for yourself.
If you like the recipe, please share the photo on Instagram and tag us too @marriedfriends. We love to see your recreation of our recipes.
Happy Cooking 🙂
Love from us
Richa & Jatin
Office Lunch Box – Punjabi Wadi Pulao
Quick. Easy. Healthy.
- 2 (large) Onion roughly chopped
- 1 (large) Potato cubed
- 1/2 cup Carrot cubed
- 1/2 cup French Beans cut into small pieces
- 1/2 cup Frozen Peas
- 3 tbsp Cooking Oil
- 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1/2 tsp Asafoetida (Hing) powdered
- 3/4 to 1 cup Punjabi Wadi break into pieces
- Coriander Leaves to garnish
- Salt to taste
- 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 2.5 cup Water
- Fried Amla or Pickle as needed
- Boondi Raita as needed
- Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in a pan or kadhai.
- Once the oil is heated, add Punjabi wadi and roast for 1 - 2 minutes on medium-high flame.
You can use any wadi for this recipe.
- Once the wadis are roasted, take them out in a bowl. Leave aside. We will use it later.
- In the same pan, add 1 Tbsp oil (if needed) and let it heat.
Adding oil depends on how much oil is left after roasting Punjabi Wadis. If you have enough oil to make pulao, don't add.
- Add cumin seeds and asafoetida. Saute and let them sizzle for a few seconds.
- Add chopped onions and let it cook until soft. It takes a minute or two. Do not brown the onions. Saute till translucent.
- Once the onions are cooked, add the rest of the chopped vegetables - potato, carrot, and beans. Mix well.
- Add seasonings - salt, red chili powder, and turmeric powder. Mix well.
- Add roasted Punjabi Wadis and pre-soaked & washed rice. Mix well. Mix gently to avoid breaking the rice grains.
- Add water. Mix and let it come to a boil. Do not cover and keep the flame high till it starts boiling.
- Once the water starts to boil, lower the flame. Cover and let it cook till all the water is absorbed and rice is perfectly cooked. It takes around 15 minutes.
- Check after 10 minutes. It will still have some water at the bottom. Add frozen peas and cover. Let it cook for another 5 minutes.
Frozen peas cook fast that's why I added them in the end. Adding at the end retains their green color too.
- After 5 minutes, the rice will be perfectly cooked. Switch off the flame and let it rest for a couple of minutes.
- Add chopped coriander leaves and fluff the pulao using a fork.
- Serve right away if you are having it at home or pack for the lunch. Your delicious lunch box meal is ready. Enjoy with some boondi raita and fried amla.
The recipe link of amla fry and boondi raita is given in the article.
Wadis are like a dumpling of different spices and ground lentils that are sun-dried. It is quite popular in India. Many people make it at home by making a paste of lentils like urad dal, chickpeas, etc., and mixing it with a lot of different spices. Then they are shaped into small balls or dumplings and sun-dried. Once completely dried, they are stored in an air-tight container and used throughout the year. It tastes very good in curries and pulao.
These days Tupperware or air-tight plastic lunch boxes are quite popular. But they are not good for health. Stainless steel or glass lunch boxes are good and leakproof. These days you can even get good quality and beautiful bamboo lunch boxes.
There are a lot of differences between a pulao and a biryani. While pulao is a simple rice recipe with some chopped veggies and some spices, biryani needs a lot of time, patience, and preparation. In Pulao, veggies are simply chopped and added while in biryani, veggies are marinated with a lot of different spices and curd. Biryani needs a lot of different spices – ground and whole – which gives it a spicy and unique flavor. Everything is slow-cooked for hours to develop that unique aroma and flavor. In biryani, rice is partially cooked first with some spices and drained. Then it is layered with the cooked veggies and topped with some milk, rose water, fried onion, and coriander. While in Pulao, after tempering and sauteing veggies, rice is added and everything is cooked with some water.
Pulao is a one-pot recipe generally made with rice, spices, and vegetables. But you can substitute rice with some dalia, quinoa, or millets. You can try with different vegetables and spices and with each variation you get a new recipe. It is comfort food. It is quick and easy to make. It is perfect for lunch or dinner.