Mason Jar Salads and More: 50 Layered Lunches to Grab and Go

Current culinary trends are emphasizing locally sourced ingredients, housemade products, and, yes, Mason jars. It’s a shift toward a more down-home approach to cooking where more comes out of the kitchen than a food-service delivery truck. But Mason jars can be more than trendy glassware. The uniformly sized jars are practical and efficient as author and food blogger ( Julia Mirabella shows in her new cookbook, Mason Jar Salads and More: 50 Layered Lunches to Grab and Go. The focus of the meal-in-a-jar recipes is on salads, though you’ll also find risottos, dressings, dips, rice dishes and soups. While the recipes are fairly standard—there are a few standouts such as oats and fruit in almond milk and a spinach salad with blueberries, almonds and blue cheese—the book’s instructions for layering the jars for overnight storage are invaluable as a jumping off point for your own culinary creations. It’s a simple, straightforward cookbook, and it’s just in time for the back-to-school season. The meals in a jar are healthy, easy to pack, and open to alteration for personal taste, making this a great gift for those heading to school or work.