Mason jars…they aren’t just for canning anymore!
People use those durable glass jars with the screw-on lids for drinkware, to hold candles, make soap dispensers and all sorts of creative purposes.
But putting your food in them is still a great way to go. Many people agree that food stored in a glass jar looks, lasts and tastes better than when it’s stored in plastic. There’s also some evidence that toxic chemicals used to make plastic containers could break down and leach into the food or drink they are storing. That’s probably why some people say never to microwave anything in plastic.
Besides using Mason jars for canning, storing dried food and as drinkware, you can make use of them for putting together on-the-go meals. In fact, you can even using them for baking!
The internet is flooded with Mason jar meal ideas, but after sorting through dozens of them, I’ve rounded up nine of my favorites!
Some of these would make great lunches, while others can be meals you make ahead of time and still others could be given as gifts. They are ideal for single folks who only need one quick meal, as well as a fun way to feed the whole family.
1. Coconut Avocado Lime Zucchini Noodle Mason Jar
Ali, recipe creator and founder of Inspiralized, says her life was changed when she discovered the Spiralizer. You can turn a lot of different vegetables into noodles!
For this recipe, you might have to find a Spiralizer in order to make the zucchini noodles – AKA zoodles. The Spiralizer sounds like one of those kitchen tools that can help you make healthier meals and cut out some grains! But if you don’t want to get a Spiralizer, I’m sure you can simply cut thin slices of zucchini instead.
For Ali’s Mason jar noodle salad, you’ll make the dressing with only three ingredients: avocado, lime and coconut milk. You’ll cook the quinoa and boil the peas and asparagus for a few minutes, but overall the preparation is pretty simple.
When you fill the Mason jar, always start with the dressing on the bottom so nothing else gets soggy. Ali also suggests loading the top with feta cheese because it gives the salad the saltiness it needs! You can store this in the fridge for a couple days and it will stay fresh.
- Check out Ali’s recipe to see how to do the rest.
2. Chicken Pot Pie In A Mason Jar
I’m a huge fan of pot pies, which is why I wanted to share this recipe from Betsylife with you!
Betsy’s recipe calls for butter, flour and milk. You could use ghee, almond, quinoa or rice flour and almond milk as alternatives if you wish. I have also seen gluten free pie crusts available in grocery stores.
You could also use organic chicken and organic chicken broth to eliminate any added hormones or antibiotics.
This meal doesn’t take very long to prepare at all! You can bake it to eat right away, or freeze it and bake it on a night when you need a quick, healthy meal. It’s a great one person meal or fun for the whole family!
- Visit Betsy’s Blog for the entire recipe and other good stuff!
3. Asian Noodle Salad Mason Jar
This Mason jar recipe comes from Lori from Foxes Loves Lemons. Lori says she makes one batch, which makes four salads – so she eats them for lunch all week and never gets tired of it!
Lori uses Soba noodles, which is the Japanese word for Buckwheat. She also makes a homemade spicy peanut dressing that sounds delicious. She includes an ingredient called sambal oelek, which is a type of chili paste.
The recipe also calls for soy sauce. Braggs Liquid Aminos is a great alternative, if you’re trying to avoid soy. And almond butter is always a great alternative to peanut butter if need be.
- Check out Lori’s Blog to get the full recipe along with more Mason jar salad ideas!
4. Superfood Burrito In A Mason Jar
Did you know you can turn a burrito into a superfood burrito?!
Especially when you make it with quinoa, zesty back beans, sprouts and kale!
Stephanie, the wellness creative director, from Wake The Wolves does an awesome job of explaining the benefits of this 7-layered superfood burrito in a jar.
- Sprouts – Known to be the most nutritious point in a plant’s cycle, sprouts are loaded with enzymes, vitamins, and essential fatty acids. Be sure to shop organic and wash them before adding to your salad or sandwich.
- Greek Yogurt – Filled with more protein than the more traditional version, Greek yogurt is a great addition to dishes that may need some extra umph and bulk.
- Cherry Tomato Salsa – Tomatoes are loaded with lycopene, ‘a powerful antioxidant proven to protect cells from harmful, often cancer-causing, free radicals.’
- Kale – Jam-packed with vitamins and nutrients, this leafy green is known for its vitamin K contents, which is a powerful antioxidant that promotes bone growth.
- Lettuce – Although not seen traditionally as a superfood, lettuce contains a fair amount of water, which is great for cleansing.
- Zesty Black Beans – Loaded with fiber and some protein, black beans can help regulate blood sugar and slow down the digestion process – keeping you fuller-longer.
- Quinoa – Noted to be a complete protein (which is a rarity in plant-based food sources), this gluten-free grain alternative is easy to digest (and easy to cook).
Viola! Another simple, tasty and nutritious meal in a jar.
- Check out Stephanie’s entire recipe and directions.
5. Pizza In A Mason Jar
Who would have thought you could throw your pizza ingredients into a mason jar and bake it just like that?
I think this is the easiest Mason jar recipe I’ve come across yet. But, Jasmin, from 1 Fine Cookie suggests that if want some crust on the bottom, instead of just on the top, to bake the bottom crust for a few minutes before you add the other ingredients, and bake it again.
That way, the bottom crust doesn’t turn out soggy. Jasmin learned the hard way on that one. But at least now you know what to do – thanks Jasmin!
Then all you need is some cheese, tomato sauce and your veggies or other pizza toppings and bake it!
You can get creative and make your version of pizza in a jar as healthy and allergen friendly as you’d like. Just let us know what you changed and how it turns out! Kids, especially, will dig this!
- Find Jasmin’s tomato sauce, pizza dough and Mason jar recipe on 1 Fine Cookie!
6. Pesto Chicken Antipasto Mason Jar
This Mason jar recipe and the next one both came from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen, which is definitely worth a visit!
Lexi shares four awesome layered Mason jar lunches all made with spinach and completely dairy, egg, nut and gluten-free. They are also Paleo friendly if that’s your thing.
Even though all four of her recipes made me go yum, I’ve included the two that made me drool the most.
The Pesto Chicken Antipasto Jar is made with roasted red peppers, pesto marinated chicken and fresh mozzarella. Then there’s tomatoes, red onion and spinach for even more flavor and nutrition. You could try substituting the pepperoni for quinoa or gluten-free Fusilli noodles – if you prefer!
- Visit Lexi’s Clean Kitchen for this recipe and plenty of others!
7. Cajun Shrimp Mason Jar
This jarred meal had me at Cajun shrimp and guacamole.
To prepare this meal, you’ll need to season the shrimp with garlic, paprika, chili powder, cayenne and Himalayan sea salt. And cook it of course, along with the sauteed onions and peppers.
Then you’ll have to make some homemade guacamole. For the guac, just add two or three avocados, some salsa, chopped peppers, garlic, jalapenos, fresh lime juice and salt and pepper to a bowl and mix it all together.
Wa la! Another fabulous and convenient jarred meal that’s perfect for on-the-go.
- Find this recipe and others at Lexi’s Clean Kitchen.
8. Lazy Lasagna In A Mason Jar
This recipe comes from a mom and CrossFit trainer, Robin Sue from Big Red Kitchen. Robin packs all of her kids lunches in Mason jars! She tells her whole story about how she got started and even put together a few tutorials on making Mason jar meals.
Robin’s Lazy Lasagna recipe really is lazy. That’s because all you have to do is cook your lasagna noodles and gently mix them up with the cheese, egg, marinara and salt. Then add the mixture to a greased Mason and bake it!
If you need an egg substitute, you can mix 3 tablespoons of warm water with 1 tablespoon of organic ground flax seed.
Robin says this is a loosey goosey recipe, so do as you like – now that you have the idea.
- Get Robin’s recipe and others from Big Red Kitchen.
9. Salad In A Mason Jar
When we’re talking lettuce salads in a jar, the possibilities are endless! This also means you can find hundreds of great Mason jar salad ideas when you search for them.
This particular Salad In A Jar created by Julia, from Fat Girl Trapped In A Skinny Body, had me licking my chops. Probably because I love mushrooms and balsamic vinaigrette dressing. The dressing is homemade and very easy. But, you’ll need to have some honey on hand.
After you’ve made your quinoa, just layer up all of the ingredients starting with the dressing on the bottom and spinach on the top – and you’re good to go! Some people shake it up and eat it right from the jar, while others prefer to dump it in a bowl. Either way works and it will stay fresh in the fridge for a good four days!
- Find this recipe and more From Fat Girl Trapped In A Skinny Body
Have you tried making any meals in a jar? Leave a comment and share your creative ideas with us!
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