Monday, May 3, 2010

Make Your Sandwiches Sexier

Now that I am part of the work force, I have realized how much money (and calories) you save by packing your own lunch for school or work. For example, you could buy a pound of sliced turkey at the deli counter to last you a week for the same amount it would cost to buy just ONE sandwich at a cafe or restaurant. That shit adds up!

The most common gripes about why people don't want to pack their own lunches are that they don't have the time, and that homemade lunches are boring and don't taste as good.

To address the first issue, it takes ten minutes to make a sandwich, you lazy ass. It probably takes longer to go out and buy something.

To address the second issue, I am writing this blog post!

Making sandwiches sexier is easy. Start with something basic you like, such as turkey, roast beef, or tuna, and play around with different accompaniments. Try different breads, cheeses, and toppings. To get you started, here are just a couple ideas:

Turkey with Pesto Mayonnaise

For a long time, my standard sandwich was turkey on wheat with lettuce, cheese, and light mayo. It kept me satisfied for a while, but I started to crave more flavor that wouldn't involve having to buy a lot more ingredients. The solution? Pesto!

You can buy pesto in a jar at the grocery store. It is more expensive than your typical condiment, but one little jar can last for months.

All I do is put a little dollop of light mayo on a slice of bread, and then about half a dollop of pesto. You can mix it right there on the bread as you spread it need to dirty any more bowls or utensils!

The pesto adds an intense kick of flavor to an otherwise bland sandwich without adding calories.

Turkey with Cranberry Sauce

Another easy condiment to add to a plain ole turkey sandwich is cranberry sauce. You can buy the kind in the can that slides right out onto a plate in the same shape as the can, frightening young and old alike.

Just shave a layer off the top and spread it onto your bread with your other toppings! As anyone who has ever celebrated Thanksgiving can attest to, turkey and cranberry are a match made in heaven. I would not recommend mixing with mayonnaise or anything crazy like that.

The cranberry sauce adds a nice sweet, tangy flavor to your sandwich!


Some other fun ingredients you might wanna try to jazz up a turkey sandwich: very thin slices of apple, avocado slices instead of mayo, or even mix a bit of curry powder into some mayo if you like it hot! Go CRAZY.

And now for an actual recipe.

Yada, yada, yada, Stacy. We know how to make a sandwich. We want RECIPES!

Here is my recipe for Grape and Walnut Tuna Salad. It is a fantastic way to add flavor, nutrients, and texture to regular ole tuna! Makes for an easy and healthy sandwich.

  • 3 cans of tuna
  • 1/2 cup light mayo
  • 1/4 cup light ranch dressing
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts. Adds a healthy crunch.
  • 1 bunch of red seedless grapes. Adds pretty color and a sweet burst of flavor.
  • Lettuce
  • Bread

NOTE: This makes enough tuna salad for 3-4 sandwiches. It is smart to make a big batch at the beginning of the week to enjoy over lettuce or in a sandwich to take to school/work.


Open your cans of tuna, drain them, and put the tuna into a mixing bowl. Flake with a fork to break up any large chunks (sorry if you are offended by the word "chunks").

Pour in your mayonnaise and ranch dressing and mix well to combine. Slice your grapes in half and mix them in as well.

Chop up your walnuts if you did not buy them pre-chopped and put them in, too.

Mix everything together and put on bread with some lettuce. Or serve a scoop of it over some lettuce. In either case, be sure to chill it well beforehand. Enjoy your big delicious sandwich!

Do YOU have any ideas on how to jazz up a basic sandwich? Any wacky ingredients others may not have thought of? Let's hear em!


  1. I sometimes like to use garden vegetable cream cheese as the condiment on my otherwise plain ham and cheese sandwich, that's really not helping anyone out in the calorie department, though it is delicious!

  2. Two of my favorite simple sandwiches:

    Cream cheese and cucumber. I soften the cream cheese and mix in some paprika, then spread it over sourdough bread and add cucumber slices.

    Also: brie and raspberry jelly.

    I make small open faced versions of both these sandwiches and have them together!

  3. I tend to put spinach in sandwiches in place of lettuce. Still gives you that leafy-green healthy feeling, and has a bit more nutritional value than lettuce. Add in some avocado for your daily dose of fiber and you're good to go with any meat/cheese combination.