Let’s get started with some ideas on easy healthy lunch ideas to make. Eating a good lunch will keep you energized throughout the day. There are plenty of pre-packaged lunches that can be bought in the grocery store, but sometmes it is just not possible to buy a store-bought lunch. Since most of us don’t have time to go out to eat for lunch every day, it is important to have some quick and easy healthy lunch ideas at hand where you can mix up your food and eat healthy without spending much time in the kitchen.
If you’re bored of making sandwiches and bringing your lunch from home every day, it’s time to make a change. In fact, why don’t you take some healthy lunch ideas easy to make? Don’t worry – it doesn’t mean you have to become a professional chef to prepare them! Easy Healthy lunch Ideas to make than you think. Explore the collection of simple recipes below
Easy Healthy Lunch Ideas To Make
Here are our most popular Healthy Lunch Ideas to try out this week that are easy to make, packable, mostly plant-based, plant-based and vegan adaptable. Many grain-free and gluten-free options.
There is nothing more nourishing than giving our body real living nutrients – fresh, nutrient-dense fruits and veggies to energize and nourish us, especially during the busy workweek. Making our lunch from scratch, and incorporating fresh produce is such a loving choice, no matter what diet or food philosophy one adheres to. Give a couple a try this week!
I try to make a point of getting in my veggies at lunch. Whether this is a hearty vegan salad, pasta salad, vegan soup, or grain bowl, this is the time I plan ahead and I am pretty intentional.
Sometimes this means meal-prepping a vegan soup for the week, or preparing a make-ahead vegan salad. Having something healthy on hand is imperative I find, when tempted to order out. It makes the decision to eat more wholesomely, a little easier to make.
Many of these delicious healthy lunches are plant-based, vegetarian, vegan or vegan-adaptable and gluten-free! Pick out a few to try this week and feel nourished and energized all week long! Have a favorite? Please leave me a note in the comments below!
Finding tasty, healthy lunch ideas that you actually have the time to make can sometimes feel easier said than done. Whether you work from home or in an office, finding a moment to whip up anything beyond a PB&J may feel like a miracle when you’re juggling what feels like one million different tasks at once.
The truth is, there are so many homemade lunch ideas and healthy lunch recipes that will satisfy both your cravings and appetite without torpedoing your busy workday. Yes, they do take a little more work and planning than a ham-and-cheese or can of soup, but not necessarily a ton of active cooking time. You can often get away with just a few minutes of work to fix yourself a good, healthy lunch—it just requires thinking ahead, picking up a few clutch items on your regular grocery shopping trip, taking some clever shortcuts, or doing some healthy meal prep. (Think: cooking rice ahead of time for an instantaneous grain bowl, swapping homemade salsa for store-bought in a zesty taco meal, or baking sheet-pan batches of veggies on Sunday to use in your salads and sandwiches.) And, of course, it’s also helpful to choose a healthy lunch recipe that is actually realistic and exciting for you to make.
While there are a few factors surrounding what makes a lunch meal healthy for you as an individual—more on that below—the first is making sure your meal will be satisfying and balanced. Generally speaking, a filling meal usually has three or four food different groups (fat, protein, starch, and fruits/vegetables), SELF columnist Jessica Jones, M.S., R.D., certified diabetes educator and cofounder of Food Heaven, tells SELF. That way, you get a balanced variety of textures and flavors to please your palate, along with different nutrients to provide you with a steady stream of energy, Jones says.
Another thing that’s always helpful to have in mind with bringing easy, healthy lunch ideas to life is that you shouldn’t fear making substitutions or tweaking recipes to suit you—including your taste preferences, budget, time constraints, dietary needs, and access to certain ingredients. “I think of recipes as a guide or inspiration,” Cara Harbstreet, M.S., R.D., L.D., of Street Smart Nutrition, tells SELF. “There are many ways to adjust recipes that still preserve the essence of the dish.” For instance, you might switch out quinoa for wild rice, turn the components of a salad into a sandwich, or choose a different variety of veggie that’s in season where you live.
With those basics in mind, if you’re looking for some inspiration to help you figure out what will hit the spot midday, check out these easy lunch recipes for same new and delicious healthy lunch ideas.
A note about the word healthy here: We know that healthy is a complicated concept. Not only can it mean different things to different people, but it’s a word that’s pretty loaded (and sometimes fraught), thanks to the diet industry’s influence on the way we think about food. At SELF, when we talk about food being healthy, sure, we’re talking about foods that are nutritious, filling, and satisfying. But we’re also talking about foods that help you connect with your culture, promote joy, and simply taste delicious. Some of those foods might fall into conventional ideas of what “healthy” is. And some might not. We selected these recipes with all of that in mind while also trying to appeal to a wide variety of nutritional needs and taste buds.
Healthy Lunch Ideas!
Fresh Spring Rolls with BEST EVER Peanut Sauce! These fresh vegan spring rolls can be made ahead and stored in the fridge for healthy meals and packable lunches on the go! The peanut sauce is divine.
This vegan, Hearts of Palm “Tuna” Salad is made with hearts of palm, red onion, pickle & fresh herbs. A delicious vegan alternative to one of our favorite sandwiches.
This Rainbow Chopped Salad is crunchy, colorful and nutritious! Tossed with a lemony herbed greek yogurt dressing, it is easy to make and easy to adapt. Perfect for meal prep, this salad keeps for 4 days in the fridge.
This vegan soup recipe- Moroccan Red Lentil Quinoa Soup is hearty, flavorful, and made with healthy ingredients. It is fast and easy to make and can be made in an Instant Pot or on the stovetop. One of my favorite make-ahead vegan soups!
Vegan Banh Mi Noodle Bowls with Sriracha Tofu, rice noodles, pickled carrots and radishes, crunchy cucumber and cabbage and a creamy vegan spicy Bahn Mi dressing. Make these ahead for the busy work week- a healthy delicious lunch idea!
Nutrient-dense Spirulina Sea Salad is pure superfood for the body. This healthy salad is made with dulse, kelp noodles, fresh veggies and flavorful Spirulina Dressing, keep it vegan or add ahi or smoked Salmon!
This Quick Vegan Chili – is loaded up with healthy veggies and beans, with deep and complex flavors that meat-eaters will even enjoy! Make a big batch on Sunday, then serve it during the busy work week!
Lentil Wrap with Spicy Tahini Sauce – This easy vegan lentil wrap is full of crunchy raw veggies like carrots, beets, and cabbage with a spicy Sriracha Tahini sauce spooned over top. Simple, energizing and easy. This vegan lunch is one of my favorites!
This Tuscan White Bean & Tuna Salad with arugula, radishes, tomatoes and a simple balsamic vinaigrette is high in protein and low in carbs. Loaded up with healthy veggies, it is a fast and healthy lunch recipe made with ingredients you probably already have in your pantry! Sub more white beans for the tuna for an easy vegan option.
Vegan Curry Chickpea Salad with Toasted Coconut, which can be turned into wraps with spinach and sprouts. Make the vegan salad ahead, then use during the busy week in wraps, tacos or over greens.
This Curried Zucchini Soup with ginger and mint is easily vegan-adaptable. A fast and easy veggie-based soup that can be made ahead, reheated and full of amazing flavor. Perfect for packed lunches!
Rainbow Veggie Hummus is not only a great appetizer, it’s a great lunch! Truth be told, I have this for lunch more than I care to admit. 🙂 The hummus a delicious vehicle for most veggies I have on hand- carrots, jicama, cucumbers, green beans, radishes, tomatoes- and it leaves me feeling satisfied without getting too full and tired. High in fiber and nutrients, this vegan lunch is easily packable.
Spring Goddess Sandwich ( or wrap) with make-ahead, smashed chickpea salad, crunchy carrots & radishes, cucumber, avocado and sprouts. Vegan and Gluten-free adaptable! A fast and healthy lunch!
Superfood Walnut Pesto Noodles, loaded up with healthy veggies- a flavorful healthy pasta salad that is packable and can be made ahead!
Carrot Quinoa Salad with Almonds with Apple Cider Vinaigrette- a delicious make-ahead vegan lunch that is healthy, vegan and full of flavor! One of my favorites.
Vegan Curry Tofu Cashew Salad – Turn it into a hearty wrap, stuff it into an avocado or served over a bowl of tender greens! Flavorful and healthy!
Thai Noodle Salad with Peanut Sauce – A delicious, vegan make-ahead pasta salad with the best peanut sauce ever! Loaded up with lots of healthy veggies, keep this gluten-free by using rice noodles. Make a big batch for the busy week!
Kimchi Burritos! A 20-minute dinner recipe, loaded up with healthy veggies, black beans, leftover rice and flavorful kimchi! Easy and delicious!
Winter Happiness Salad! This Kale & Quinoa Salad with Apples, Chickpeas and Currants! A hearty vegan salad that can be made ahead- perfect for potlucks, gatherings or midweek lunches!
Cuban Black Bean Soup! A simple vegan recipe for Cuban Black Bean Soup with veggies and roasted sweet potatoes that can be made ahead in an Instant Pot with Dry Beans! Vegan and delicious, this soup is perfect for packed lunches.
My favorite, a Smashed Chickpea and Avocado Sandwich which if you are gluten-free, forgo the bread and eat it out of the bowl, or over greens or try it in a wrap! Vegan and gluten-free adaptable!
Kale Tabbouleh! Kale Farro Salad with Almonds and Pomegranate Seeds. Think of this like a Wintery Kale Tabbouleh- lemony light and flavorful, this easy Middle Eastern-inspired salad can be made ahead, perfect for packed lunches.
Vietnamese Shrimp Lettuce Wraps with Nuoc Cham, a light and refreshing lunch, perfect for hot summer days. Flavorful, healthy and low in carbs and calories.
Tarragon Chicken Salad can be turned into a sandwich, wrap or served over a bed of tender greens. Fast easy and full of flavor! A healthy delicious low-carb lunch! Keto-friendly when served over avocado or greens!
Nordic Nicoise Salad with smoked salmon over a bed of greens with radish, cucumber, baby potatoes, capers, dill, and horseradish-spiked Nicoise dressing. A delicious healthy lunch!
Middle Eastern Salad Tacos with spiced chickpeas, hummus and a mound of lemony salad, topped with fresh herbs and scallions. FAST, Vegan & sooooo Delicious!
Luscious Zucchini Basil Soup! Make this ahead for the busy work week and keep it vegan or swirl in a little yogurt. A healthy delicious lunch recipe perfect when zucchinis are aplenty!
Sushi Burrito with Brown Rice, Avocado, Ahi Tuna ( or sub Tofu) carrots and kimchi– a healthy delicious lunch! Vegan and GF adaptable!
Smoked Salmon, Avocado and Fennel Salad with butter lettuce and creamy Dill Dressing. Fast and easy, this hearty entree salad makes for a delicious lunch or dinner main.
Green Goddess Egg Salad with Avocado – this can be served on delicious whole grain bread like you see here, over a bed of lightly dressed greens or spooned into toasted pita or tortillas. Instead of using traditional mayo, try using plain yogurt or vegan mayo.
Farmers Market Pasta with Grilled zucchini and summer squash, corn, black beans and cherry tomatoes! Serve this warm for dinner and save the rest for packed lunches!
Move beyond your typical grilled cheese sandwich and try this Heirloom Tomato Sandwich with arugula pesto -especially delicious when juicy summer tomatoes are in season. Keep it vegan or add fresh mozzarella or goat cheese.
Soba Noodle Salad with Cucumber and Smoked Salmon (or tofu) – a tasty salad with gluten-free buckwheat noodles, smoked salmon ( or tofu) cucumbers, scallions, and a delicious Sesame Dressing.
Rainbow Wraps! These vegan collard greens wraps are filled with hummus, crispy tofu, shredded beets, carrots and avocado! Make them ahead and drizzle with Tahini sauce! A delicious healthy lunch idea that is gluten-free.
This vegan Summer Pasta Salad w/ Zucchini, Corn and Cilantro Pesto is made with gluten-free rice noodles and loaded up with healthy summer veggies, then tossed in the most flavorful Cilantro Pesto…. deliciously addicting and perfect for lunches on the go.
“Kicked-up” Picante Tuna Salad – This spicy tuna salad is made with radishes, cilantro, jalapeño, capers and zesty lime juice. Serve it over a bed of greens, piled onto an avocado, or spooned into tortillas or a wrap. Sometimes I’ll just eat it out of a bowl. A fast and easy lunch idea.
Middle Eastern Eggplant Wrap with a Lemony Kale Slaw with Creamy Tahini Sauce. Keep it vegan or add feta! A delicious healthy lunch idea that can be made ahead!
Too busy for lunch? This Matcha, Kale and Pineapple Smoothie will give you a burst of energy! It is not only delicious, but it is also filling and very energizing! Take it to work in a mason jar!