It’s not hard to admit that lunch is one of the hardest meals to eat when keeping your diet on track. It’s also difficult to pack a lunch for your kids in a hurry that’s not the boring (and sugar-laden) peanut butter and jelly. It takes preparation and scheduling, and let’s face it – we all don’t have that kind of time on our hands!
Sure, picking up a salad on your lunch break is great and all, but it gets old quick! We want to eat healthy, but we’ve definitely lost the battle against our minds a few times to a slice of pizza during lunch. But we’re done with that! It’s time that we bring something for lunch that we look forward to, not dread eating. Remember everyone, eating is one of life’s greatest joys – so why not enjoy every meal?
We’ve rounded up a bunch of quick “recipes” and ideas for you to bring (and enjoy!) for lunch. There are also a few ideas for your kids as well!
- Wrap it: If you’re a wrap fan, this one is for you! Swap wheat and gluten filled tortillas for collard greens. You’re getting extra nutrition from the wrap, with a little added crunch. Fill with an assortment of veggies, avocado, and animal protein of choice, and enjoy. This recipe for collard green wraps with rainbow veggies, quinoa and peanut sauce is one of our favorites! You can also try a Spirulina Wrap for a different taste and texture.
- Revamp your salad: Yes, this is a salad recipe. No, it’s not boring. Yes, you will love it. All you need is salad greens, peaches, prosciutto and pistachios! It’s sweet and savory, nutritious and filling. What more can you ask for?
- Add avocado: Now this is a salad recipe, but a different type of salad, and we give it a twist! Chicken salad minus the mayonnaise. Replace mayonnaise with avocado to get the same texture, delicious flavor, and double the nutrition! Plus the healthy fats in the avocado will keep you satisfied for longer. You can eat as a sandwich, wrap, or mix with lettuce.
- Think outside the box: Deconstructing your sandwich is always a creative way to pack your lunch. Instead of piling toppings onto bread which will just leave you hungry 20 minutes later if you don’t have enough protein, separate all the components out into their own bags/compartments so that you can switch up your ratio of carbs to protein and toppings. For example, a few slices of cheese, slices of steak, tomato and avocado. Throw a few slices of fruit on the side with a handful of nuts, and you’re all set!
- Make lunch fancy: Here’s one for the kids that looks fancy, tastebud approved, and will nourish them: Curried egg salad pinwheels! They are easy and quick to make, and the kids will love how fun they look! And feel free to get creative with these – swap mayo for avocado, eggs for chicken, or curry powder for paprika!
- Leftovers are golden: Still thinking that dinner leftovers are only for dinner? No way! Think outside the box and bring your meat, vegetable and grain dinner leftovers in for lunch! You can even throw them on top of some greens and drizzle with a vinaigrette dressing to switch up the flavors. You get to enjoy your delicious, homemade meal all over again.
- Pizza!! For those days when we have a craving for pizza, instead we can eat mini egg pizzas! Grain free, gluten free, nut free and soy free, these mini egg pizzas can be enjoyed by both adults and kids with tricky allergies.
- Snackify your lunch: Rather than including 1 or 2 large items in your lunchbox, try choosing a few smaller nutritious snack-type items to make up your lunch. This way you can nibble throughout the day, which can be helpful if you’ve got a busy day and don’t have time for a formal lunch break. Plus it can help avoid overeating if you don’t sit down to lunch completely starving. Just make sure you’ve got some wholesome snacks that include proteins, healthy fats and fiber.
What are some of your favorite creative lunch ideas?