Over the years I’ve developed a cache of staples to keep at work for days when I forget my lunch, don’t have leftovers to bring, or have other food hiccups:

Sandwich Fixings + Braunschweiger/liverwurst + Grainy brown mustard

Spread on a demi-baguette or rye bagel from the corner grocery on campus, this is an effective main that doesn’t need much prep or reheating.

Snacks + Wheat Thins + RXBARs + Bel-Vita

Wheat Thins are neutral, so they work well with many toppings. They have enough flavor that you can just eat a couple plain, if needed, to settle your stomach. RXBARs are flavorful & keep mid-afternoon snacks from veering into junk food. Bel-Vitas are there for the days when breakfast doesn’t happen.

The Hero + Chèvre (goat cheese)

You can spread this on crackers for a snack. You can mix it in stew as a replacement for crema, sour cream, or Greek yoghurt. You can spread it on a sandwich. You can crumble it on anything. Chèvre is the hero of the office-eaten lunch.

Odds & Ends + Instant/freeze-dried coffee + Tea + Sriracha + Crystal hot sauce + Eggs (occasionally) + Salsa verde (jarred, occasionally)

Technically, you don’t need water for instant coffee. I have Mount Hagen’s fair trade instant in my desk drawer right now, but have used Café Bustelo Espresso Instantáneo before, too. For tea, I like to keep an assortment of Douglas Fir Spring Tip, rooibos, & licorice. Eggs are great because you can poach them in the microwave, then add them to soup, top them with salsa verde & eat with chips, or dress up ramen the Roy Choi way.