Healthy Meals When Work Keeps You Moving Nonstop

by | Mar 15, 2018 | 0 comments

Eating healthy meals can be a struggle for emergency response professionals. Sitting down to a meal and having a call interrupt before you can finish is a reality for emergency responders, it’s not just a Hollywood stereotype. You don’t have to let the unpredictability ruin your attempts to eat healthily!
There are many meals that you can easily pack and keep on hand that you can grab food whenever you get a chance, no matter what craziness the job throws at you. Leftovers of family meals provide an option. Or, with a little preparation, you can expand your choices beyond the typical (and popular) mason jar salad or options we’ve written about that include power breakfasts to keep you going.

3 Fantastic Eating On-the-Go Meals

Zesty Shrimp and Black Bean Salad (4 servings)

We found this one on Eating Well, and it promises protein and bold flavor!

  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced chipotle chili in adobo or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound peeled and deveined cooked shrimp, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
  • 1 large poblano pepper or bell pepper, chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped scallions
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

To Prepare:
Mix vinegar, oil, chili, and spices in a large bowl. Add shrimp, beans, tomatoes, pepper of your choice, scallions, and cilantro. Stir to coat and serve at room temperature or chilled. Refrigerate and use within a day or two.

Black Bean Quinoa Burritos

This particular recipe from The Muffin Myth will make several meals at once. It will, in fact, help to make the search for easy-to-eat on the go meals a bit simpler, because you can throw these in your freezer until you need them!


  • 2 Tbsp canola or grapeseed oil
  • 1 large yellow onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1/2 – 1 jalapeño seeded and finely minced
  • 1 large red bell pepper diced
  • 1 medium zucchini diced
  • 1 cup corn kernels fresh, frozen, or canned are all fine
  • 1 large tomato dice
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa (from about 1/2 cup uncooked
  • 3 cups cooked black beans 2 cans
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp hot smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp chile powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 a bunch of cilantro chopped
  • 1 cup shredded jalapeño cheese optional
  • 6 large whole wheat tortillas


  1. Chop all of the ingredients you need and set aside as you heat the oil.
  2. Once the oil is hot, saute onions 6-8 minutes, then add garlic, peppers and saute for 2 more minutes.
  3. Add zucchini and red pepper and sauté for 8-10 minutes before adding corn and tomato. Saute for 2-3 minutes. When heated, add
  4. quinoa, black beans, cumin, smoked paprika, chile, and salt. Stir.
  5. Add cilantro, and remove from heat.
  6. Divide filling between the six tortillas (or more if you want smaller burritos), sprinkle with cheese if desired, and roll.

To freeze these for later use, wrap these individually in foil and layer in the freezer. When ready, pop it into the microwave and enjoy.

Chicken Waldorf Wraps


  • 12 ounces cooked chicken breast, shredded or cubed
  • 1/3 cup dried tart cherries
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped pecans or peanuts
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 1/3 cup fat-free mayonnaise dressing or salad dressing
  • 1/3 cup fat-free sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 – 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed
  • Butterhead lettuce leaves
  • 2 medium red or green apples, thinly sliced
  • Red grapes (optional)


  1. In a medium bowl combine chicken, dried cherries, pecans, and celery. For dressing, in a small bowl combine mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, honey, and rosemary. Add dressing to chicken mixture; stir gently to coat.
  2. If desired, cover and chill for up to 24 hours. Arrange lettuce leaves and apple slices on a serving platter. Top with chicken mixture. If desired, garnish with red grapes.

With a little advance planning, you can eat healthy meals even with an intense job. Now get out there and be the hero that you are!

PHOTO: Pixabay / CC0 Public Domain

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