Quinoa, avocado and chia seed lunchbox stack recipe

Madeleine Shaw / 16 Mar 2015

I asked my followers what recipes they wanted more of and the biggest response was healthy lunch boxes…I am loving my Lunchbox Stacks. This idea is timeless and you can mix it up using different protein and veg.


However all lunchbox stacks have a few rules…let’s call them guidelines. Firstly, the bottom starts with a dressing. Next, there is always some form of protein, loads of veg and a good sprinkle of some form of nut or seed for bit of a crunch. Once you have stacked up your layers, you are set for lunch. Keeping each section separate makes sure all the produce stays fresh and crunchy.

Quinoa has taken the stage as protein for this meal. I usually would pop some fish or meat but sometimes I like to have a meat-free meal. Quinoa is a great source of protein and is super yummy.


  • 75g of quinoa
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp of mustard
  • sea salt
  • 1 large carrot
  • 30g of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 small cos lettuce
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 tbsp of chia seeds
  • 1 lemon


  • First we need to cook the quinoa, do this step the night before. You can make a big batch and use it for the week.
  • Wash the quinoa in a sieve, then place 150ml of water on top of it in a pan, bring to the boil and then let it simmer for 15 minutes until the water is absorbed. Add a pinch of sea salt in just towards the end and stir.
  • On the day that you want to make your salad, get your mason jar or equivalent ready.
  • Mix the oil, vinegar, mustard and a pinch of salt together, then pour into the bottom of the jar and then add your cold quinoa.
  • Grate the carrot and pop it in, then cut up your avocado and tomato, squeeze some fresh lemon on them to prevent them from browning, then place on top of the carrot.
  • Roughly chop the lettuce, place this on top, then scatter the chia seeds. Hey presto you have a salad!
  • Just before you eat, shake it up to mix the dressing and flavours.

I hope you have a fab lunch!

Tip: Make sure you wash the quinoa before you cook it, as it makes it taste better and allows it to be absorbed more effectively into your system.

Photo credit: Madeleine Shaw