Coming up with healthy lunch ideas can be a daunting task. It’s hard to find new and exciting things to pack for your family’s lunch that are actually healthy.
Remember to have a balance of protein, fat and carbohydrates whenever you pack a lunch to ensure your loved ones are full and alert all afternoon. Try to avoid junk food like chips, candy and soda that might cause a 3pm nap!!
Here are a few easy and healthy lunch ideas for school or for work:
- Healthy PB&J; (whole grain bread, natural peanut butter, and sliced strawberries), applesauce, and reduced fat string cheese
- Tortilla Wraps- whole grain tortillas filled with veggies, sliced turkey or chicken and natural cheese rolled and cut in half
- Chicken noodle soup, whole grain crackers, and fresh berries
- Turkey sandwich on whole grain bread, carrot and celery sticks with reduced-fat ranch dressing for dipping
- Whole wheat pasta salad (make your own with whole grain pasta, peppers, olives, cubed chicken breast, balsamic vinegar and olive oil)
- Low-fat chili in a thermos with whole grain crackers and string cheese (chili can be cooking overnight in the crock pot and ready for the thermos in the morning!)
- Whole grain spaghetti and turkey meatballs in a thermos with a garden salad and low-fat dressing
- Fresh berries (or other seasonal fruit) with low-fat yogurt or cottage cheese and homemade “trail mix” – whole wheat pretzels, raisins, almonds, cheerios, etc or a high fiber granola bar (like Fiber One)
- Whole grain english muffin with pizza sauce and shredded cheese (toasted) and fruit
- Ants On A Log (celery stick with natural peanut butter and raisins), and a Yogurt Parfait (layer low-fat granola, vanilla yogurt and berries ending with granola on top)
- Cranberry-Nut Turkey Roll Ups Spread Flatout bread with 1 tablespoon whole-berry cranberry sauce and 1 teaspoon fat-free mayonnaise. Top with 3 ounces thickly sliced deli turkey breast, 1 leaf romaine lettuce, and 1 teaspoon chopped pecans. Roll up and serve.
- hummus and veggies in a flat out wrap
Remember, have some fun with lunch. Pack a colorful napkin leftover from a party or write a love note. Lunch is an important time to refuel the body and the spirit to help finish the day well!