Easy Healthy Teenage Lunch Ideas

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I am sure it is one of the hardest things you have to do every day, trying to figure out what to pack in your teenager’s lunch. You have a lot on your plate with school work and extracurricular activities. T

he last thing you need is to be worrying about what goes into their lunch boxes. Luckily, I have some delicious and easy healthy teenage lunch ideas that will make packing meal prep for your kids a breeze!

If you do not add variety to your teen’s lunch or pack the same lunch every day, your children may lose interest in eating it. Therefore, you should come up with creative lunch ideas for teens that encourage them to finish their food daily and provide them with the necessary nutrients.

Teens are generally inclined towards eating packaged junk food or ready-made meals without realizing their adverse effects on health, and most teens find home food uninteresting. However, since teens undergo extensive growth and development, they need good nutrition to stay healthy and prevent obesity.

Thus, eating healthy homemade food is crucial. This post provides a list of lunch recipes that are easy to prepare, look delicious, and provide complete nutrition to your teens. Read on.

Healthy Lunch Ideas For Teens:

1. Black Bean Chimichurri Salad:Save

You Will Need:

  • 400 grams of can of black beans, drained and rinsed.
  • ¼ red onion, roughly chopped.
  • 1 tomato, roughly chopped.
  • 50 grams feta cheese, crumbled.
  • ½ avocado, chopped.
  • For The Chimichurri
  • A large handful parsley.
  • A large handful coriander.
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.
  • ½ garlic clove, chopped.
  • 2 tablespoons of vinegar.
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin.
  • ¼ teaspoon of chili powder.

How To:

  1. In a blender, whip all the chimichurri ingredients until all the ingredients are well combined. Season with salt and pepper and leave it aside.
  2. In a bowl, mix the salad ingredients.
  3. Drizzle over the chimichurri salad dressing and serve.

2. Chicken Baguettes:

You Will Need:

  • 1 small chicken breast.
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil.
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar.
  • 1 sandwich baguette
  • ½ teaspoon golden caster sugar.
  • ½ small carrot, peeled and grated.
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced.
  • ½ red chili, thinly sliced.
  • ½ cucumber, deseeded and sliced.
  • 1-2 tablespoon sweet chili sauce.
  • 3-4 lettuce leaves, washed.

How To:

  1. Put the chicken breast between cling film and bash with a rolling pin.
  2. Apply some oil on the chicken and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Leave it aside to cool.
  3. In a bowl, mix rice vinegar, sugar and lime juice until the sugar dissolves.
  4. Now add spring onions, chili, cucumber and carrot to the bowl.
  5. Slice the sandwich baguette in half.
  6. Put the lettuce leaves on top, followed by the chicken.
  7. Now pile the cucumber and carrot mixture on top and wrap in a cling film.

3. Pizza Pasta Salad:

You Will Need:

  • 85 grams of pasta,
  • 1 tablespoon sun-dried tomato pesto.
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 50 grams light mozzarella, cubed.
  • 3-4 black olives, halved
  • 85 grams baby plum tomatoes, halved.
  • A handful of basil leaves
  • 4 slices salami, sliced

How To:

  1. Cook the pasta according to the package instruction. Drain, and leave it aside to cool.
  2. Toss the pasta with pesto, sun-dried tomatoes and season to taste.
  3. In a shallow bowl or jar, place the pasta first, followed by slices of salami, olive, cheese and basil leaves.

4. Turkey And Apple Sandwich:

You Will Need:

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard.
  • 4 ounces of Brie, sliced.
  • 8 slices of raisin-walnut bread.
  • ½ apple, thinly sliced
  • 8 ounces of thinly sliced turkey.

How To:

  1. In a bowl, mix honey and mustard. Spread the mixture on the bread slices.
  2. Place the slices of Brie cheese on the bread slice.
  3. Layer the apple and turkey slices on the Brie cheese and top with mustard and honey sauce.
  4. Cut in half and serve.

5. Turkey Kebab With Dip:

You Will Need:

For The Kebab:

  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 small pinch saffron
  • ½ cup whole-wheat bread crumbs.
  • 500 grams ground turkey breast.
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon.
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest.
  • ¼ teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper
  • 24 wooden skewers
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

For The Dip:

  • ½ cup no fat plain yogurt
  • 8 mint leaves, finely sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How To:

  1. Preheat the barbecue.
  2. To make the dip, combine yogurt with mint leaves and season with salt and pepper.
  3. To make the kebabs, in a dish, mix saffron with warm water and leave it for a few minutes.
  4. In a bowl, combine breadcrumbs, ground turkey, ginger, saffron, cinnamon, lemon zest and juice, salt, pepper and chili flakes.
  5. Mix well and divide into small balls.
  6. Apply some oil on the grill and grill the kebabs for 3 minutes on each side until they are well cooked.
  7. Serve the kebabs with dip.

6. Tomato and Bread Salad with Chicken:

You Will Need:

  • 3 cups of tomatoes, diced
  • ¾ cup red onion, finely sliced
  • 3 tablespoons of capers
  • 3 handfuls fresh parsley, chopped.
  • A handful fresh basil, finely chopped.
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar.
  • 1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups of Italian baguette, cubed.
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • ¾ cup grated fresh Parmesan.
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon juice.
  • 2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts.
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, finely chopped.

How To:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a salad bowl, add red onions, capers, tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, parsley, olive oil and 2 cloves of minced garlic. Stir well.
  3. Now add Parmesan and bread to the tomato mixture. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. In a small bowl, mix rosemary, remaining cloves of garlic and lemon juice.
  5. Rub the mixture on the chicken the season to taste.
  6. Roast or grill for 30 minutes or until cooked through.
  7. When cooled, cut the chicken pieces and add to the salad.

7. Baked Macaroni:

You Will Need:

  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  • 6 cups of cauliflower florets.
  • 500 grams of macaroni.
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons of chopped garlic.
  • 2 cups of chopped onion
  • 3 cups of diced zucchini

For The Sauce:

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard.
  • ¼ cup of flour
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh basil.
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh oregano.

For The Topping:

  • 1 cup bread crumbs

How To:

  1. Heat the chicken stock and add cauliflower to it. Cook for 15 minutes or until tender.
  2. Cook the macaroni according to the package instruction and reserve 150 ml of pasta cooking water.
  3. In a skillet, heat olive oil, add garlic and onions and sauté for a minute.
  4. Now add the zucchini and cook until it softens. Add the zucchini mixture to the pasta.
  5. In another pan, heat oil and add flour to it. Cook until the flour changes its color. Add the reserved stock and keep whisking.
  6. Now add basil, oregano, mustard and pureed cauliflower. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
  7. Season with salt and pepper. When the sauce cools, puree using a blender and pour it over the pasta. Toss to coat.

8. Chicken Pita Sandwich:

You Will Need:

  • 2 cooked skinless and boneless chicken breasts.
  • 1 tablespoon of wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon of chopped chives.
  • ¼ cup of nonfat yogurt
  • ½ small cucumber, diced
  • 1 pita bread
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How To:

  1. Cut the chicken breast into thin slices. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Now sprinkle chives and vinegar on it.
  3. In another bowl, mix cucumber and yogurt together.
  4. Now split the pita bread and stuff 2 tablespoons of cucumber and yogurt sauce in it.
  5. Place ¼th of the chicken mixture into the pockets and close. Serve immediately.

9. Greek Pasta Salad:

You Will Need:

  • 1 cup of pasta shells
  • 2 tablespoons of Italian dressing.
  • 1/8 cup of sliced olives
  • ¼ cup of feta cheese
  • Chicken breast, cooked and cubed.

How To:

  1. Cook the pasta according to the package instruction. Drain, rinse and leave it aside.
  2. In a bowl, mix the Italian dressing with olives, tomatoes, and chicken and feta cheese.
  3. Serve immediately

10. Baked Chicken Fajitas:

You Will Need:

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into ½-inch strips.
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, de-seeded and cut into 1-inch strips.
  • 1 red bell pepper, de-seeded and cut into 1-inch strips.
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and cut into 1-inch strips.
  • 1 orange bell pepper, de-seeded and cut into 1-inch strips.
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • ½ teaspoon of black pepper.
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 8, 6-inches corn tortillas
  • Fat-free sour cream, for serving.
  • Cilantro for garnishing.

How To:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Chop the chicken and veggies.
  3. Spray the baking dish with cooking spray.
  4. In a salad bowl, toss together chicken, cumin, onions, salt, pepper, bell peppers and olive oil until well combined.
  5. Now bake uncovered for 25 minutes or until the chicken is well cooked and the vegetables are tender.
  6. Serve the chicken and vegetable with corn tortillas and top with cilantro and sour cream

Healthy Lunches For… Teenagers

Encourage older children to eat a balanced lunch full of vital vitamins and minerals. Read our tips for packing a healthy lunchbox that kids will love to take to school.

With more than half of children taking a packed lunch to school – a staggering five billion lunches a year – not to mention the many office and outdoor workers who rely on them, it’s clear that lunchboxes make a vital contribution to our everyday lives. That said, thinking up inspiring ideas can be a challenge. It’s tempting to fall into the trap of using packaged, ready-made options. Although these seem like the easy answer, they tend to be high in fat, saturated fat, salt and sugar.

Teenage years are when kids start to exert more control over what they eat, which makes guiding them towards the right choices all the more difficult. It’s worth reminding your teenager that eating well not only helps them to perform at their best, but it’s key for looking and feeling fab. Our on-trend recipes will not only make their mates envious, but are designed to provide the vital nutrients they need at this stage.

Looking to inspire your kids with some new kit? Read our review of the best lunchboxes on the market that will look cool and keep food fresh until breaktime.

What to include in your lunchbox

Bento box with sushi rolls and edamame beans

Iron
Girls, especially, are at risk of being low in this mineral, so include plenty of iron-rich choices like lean meat, dark green leafy veg, dried fruit like apricots, as well as chickpeas, lentils and beans.

Zinc
Growing kids need this mineral, especially as teens, so include good sources like lean beef, eggs, legumes like chickpeas, lentils and beans, Brazil nuts and almonds (taking into consideration your child’s school guidelines about nuts) as well as seeds including pumpkin and sesame.

Omega-3 fatty acids
These all-important fatty acids keep the brain well-oiled and help to establish healthy, balanced hormones. Try oily varieties of fish including salmon, tuna, sardines, trout and mackerel. Alternatively, for vegans and vegetarians look to chia seeds, flaxseeds and walnuts (depending on school guidelines about nuts).

Snacking
Teens love snacking so pack handy nibbles like homemade popcorn flavoured with chilli or paprika instead of salt or sugar. Visit our healthy snack recipe collection for more ideas.

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