I love packing healthy lunches, but there are some busy days where it just isn’t in the cards.
Luckily, working on the North Fork, there are plenty of enticing grab-and-go options that are fresh, inventive and give me the fuel needed to power through the afternoon.
Each of these spots features a well-stocked grab and go case with menu items that rotate seasonally and daily, and are always a safe bet for any meal throughout the day.
Lombardi’s Love Lane, Mattituck
While the options change seasonally, you can find Italian staples like chicken bruschetta and cherry tomato salad, Mediterranean grilled salmon over baby greens and rustic to-go sandwiches such as fresh fig, arugula, burrata and balsamic.
Hampton Coffee Company, Aquebogue
This Aquebogue coffee shop is a solid choice for soups, salads and paninis. Specials change weekly but two staples are the tomato and mozzarella melt and mandarin orange chicken salad. It’s made with cashews and cucumbers on a bed of arugula with sesame ginger dressing.
8 Hands Farm, Cutchogue
A staple for filling your fridge with pasture-raised meats and eggs, you can also find a variety of meals to-go at the market. You can select from warm savory or sweet scones and heat-and-eat meals like chana masala or the pork belly fried rice, made with fresh eggs and pork from the farm.
We all know and love the empanadas here, but the market features a selection of other prepared foods that are perfect for when you’re on the go. You can’t go wrong with the kale salad with roasted butternut squash, Israeli couscous or curried chicken salad.
Southold General, Southold
The options here are next-level. You never know what you’ll find, from a lentil soup to caesar salad, a truffle mac and cheese or even coq au vin on a cold, rainy day.
The Market, Greenport
Chicken and kale salads are anchors at this organic market, where you can also find vegan and vegetarian choices. Pre-made wraps like the Popeye — pesto, spinach cheese and tomato — are perfect for when you’re on the go.