Easy To Pack Lunch Ideas


Looking for some Easy Lunch Ideas To Pack? I’ve got you covered.

A finished school year means one thing — summer! Summer is the best time of year because all the kids are out of school and can spend more time with their families. But it also means changing routines since kids aren’t in school. In my house, that meant big changes for my daughter and her lunch box preferences.

Easy Lunch Ideas To Pack

Looking for easy lunch ideas to pack? These recipes are fun and nutritious. We have pulled together some of the best ideas from around the web, so you don’t have to waste your time searching for all the recipes for easy healthy lunches.

Tips for packing lunch

If you want to pack lunches you’ll actually look forward to eating, you’ll want to consider various foods and flavors to include in your meals. Cold lunches don’t have to be drab, and leftovers can be an appealing option when you don’t have much time to spare. Upgrade sandwiches with specialty breads and toppings or go bread-free with tasty bowl meals for lunch.

Sandwiches you pack for lunch at work

Sandwiches might come to mind quickly when you’re trying to come up with packed lunch ideas for work, but they don’t have to be plain or simple. Get creative with bread and fillings for sandwiches that shine:

1. Ham and cheese sandwich

Close up croissant sandwich with ham and arugula for breakfast

Upgrade your ham and cheese by using deli-sliced Black Forest ham with Swiss or Gruyere cheese. Add lettuce and tomatoes if you like, and dress a ciabatta roll with Dijon mustard for a tasty lunch.

2. Mini muffulettas

A giant muffuletta might be too much for lunch at the office, but you can make mini sandwiches on sliced Italian bread with sesame seeds. Pile on your choice of genoa salami, ham, mortadella, provolone, and Swiss cheese, and make it special with Italian olive salad or giardiniera from a jar.

3. Pastrami on rye

This sandwich is anything but basic, and it’s quick to put together with deli pastrami, rye bread, prepared coleslaw or canned sauerkraut, and Russian dressing.

4. Tasty veggie sandwich

Spread your favorite bread with flavored cheese spread, top with roasted peppers and fresh or pickled vegetables for meatless Monday or any other day you want a nutritious sandwich for lunch at work.

5. Frozen flatbread sandwiches

You can find some great sandwiches in the frozen foods section too. Try the Streatery Shawarma-Style Chicken Flatbread Frozen Sandwich for a nice change-up in your lunch routine.

Wraps are easy to eat at your desk

If the pace is hectic at your office, you might be looking for cold lunch ideas for adults at work! Wraps are even easier to eat than traditional sandwiches, and with a variety of wrappers and fillings, you’ll never get bored:

1. BLT Lettuce wrap

BLT Wrap Sandwich on a wooden board.

Use lettuce to wrap sliced or chopped bacon and tomatoes.

2. Hummus and veggie wrap

Spread your favorite hummus variety on lavash bread and roll it up with carrots, cucumbers, and leafy lettuce for some Mediterranean flavor in your lunch.

3. Turkey avocado wrap

Wrap turkey lunch meat and an avocado slice in a tortilla for a quick and delicious lunch solution.

4. Hawaiian barbecue wrap

Add some tropical flavor to your lunch with grilled chicken, barbecue sauce, pineapple slices, and lettuce rolled into a wrap.

5. Store-prepared wrap

With pre-packaged wrap sandwiches, you won’t have to spare a second thought to come up with a delicious lunch on the go.

Salads make a satisfying cold lunch

If you don’t want to wait in line for the microwave, you might need some cold lunch ideas for work! Salads are an easy option, and they can be absolutely scrumptious:

1. Greek salad

Greek Salad on a plate on top of a wood table.

Use this recipe to make a Greek salad for a great healthy lunch that doesn’t need to be heated.

2. Chef salad in a mason jar

Making a meal in a mason jar is fun, and a chef’s salad is super easy for a first-timer. Put the dressing in the bottom of the jar, then layer your choice of meats, cheeses, boiled eggs, and salad vegetables on top. Make it pretty if you like, but if you’re in a hurry, don’t worry, because you’re just going to shake it up and serve it when you’re ready for lunch!

3. Asian chopped salad

Cabbage, bell peppers, carrots, peas, and bean sprouts are great on a bed of leafy lettuce topped with a tasty salad dressing.

4. Chickpea Salad

Toss together some canned chickpeas with bell pepper, onion, olives, and feta, and then dress this yummy salad with an olive oil vinaigrette.

5. Cobb Salad

If you’re short on time, grab a ready-made Cobb salad for lunch.

Comfort food makes lunch worth looking forward to

When you’re trying to come up with easy lunches to pack for work, comfort food can save the day! Whether you use leftovers from dinner or already prepared products, you can make a lunch that will be the envy of your coworkers:

1. Meatloaf sandwich

Bread Sandwich with meatloaf.

Use leftovers or microwave a frozen meatloaf entree to slice up on your favorite crusty bread.

2. Cold fried chicken

A fried chicken dinner on Sunday means leftovers for lunch on Monday. Heat it up or enjoy it cold with a side of potato salad or coleslaw.

3. Hearty chili

Add veggies to homemade, canned, or frozen chili—in the chili or on the side—for a tasty lunch that will fill you up.

4. Mac and cheese

Macaroni and cheese dinners come in all kinds of heat-and-eat packaging options, which helps make lunchtime go smoothly.

5. Broccoli cheddar soup

A tasty soup proves that a hot lunch doesn’t have to be a hassle.

Bowls make lunch fun and healthy

If you need some healthy packed lunch ideas for work, bowls are a great option! These vegetable-forward bowls with grains and protein are easy to make and add variety to your healthy packed lunch rotation:

1. Quinoa and spinach

Home made freshness quinoa, spinach, avocado and sun dried tomatoes salad with pumpkin seeds and vinaigrette dressing

Top a bowl of spinach leaves with cooked quinoa and fresh veggies like tomatoes and avocados for lunch that’s as pretty as it is healthy.

2. Wild rice and sweet potatoes

Pack plenty of nutrients in your lunch with a sweet potato bowl mixed with wild rice and kale.

3. Chicken burrito bowl

Beans and rice, fajita chicken, bell peppers, and onions don’t need tortillas to make a great lunch.

4. Pork with noodles and peanut sauce bowl

Bowls don’t have to be made with grains; noodles are a great choice too. Cooked chow mein noodles taste great when you toss in some pork and peanut sauce.

5. Freezer case veggie bowls

Birds Eye Steamfresh Protein Blends Southwest Style Vegetables gives you all the nutrition you need to get through the rest of your workday. And you can microwave it right in the bag!

Easy Packed Lunch Ideas

When you’ve got to get out the door and fast, packing your lunch box might feel like an extra chore. But buying lunch every day can really take a toll—on your wallet and your nutrition—and that goes for both kids and adults.

Let’s make it easier for you. We’ve gathered these fast and easy lunch ideas you can pack in portable containers in minutes, no cooking required. With whole grains, protein, fruits and vegetables, and short ingredient lists, these lunches will power you and your family through the afternoon.

Most of these are simple enough, you can have your kids make their own lunches the night before so they can grab their bags and go in the morning. Lunch-packing is one of the great training grounds for teaching kids how to cook. Here is to their future independence! Don’t forget to add a piece of fruit to your lunch box for extra nutrients and a little sweetness.

Ready-to-Eat Soup

The Good Soup Company

Not all canned soups are created equal. Some of our favorite canned soups make an effort to add ample vegetables. Look for low-sodium, single-serve, ready-to-eat options with pull-open tops. And startups like Good Stock Soups will ship frozen, single-serve soups right to your door on a subscription basis.

Chicken Provencal Wrap with Spinach and Goat Cheese

Chicken Provencal Wrap

It looks pretty, and it’s pretty simple to make. Start with rotisserie chicken and prepared pesto to make building this chicken provencal wrap a two-minute task. Add jarred peppadews or roasted red peppers, goat cheese, and baby spinach on a whole wheat wrap.

Egg and Dill Tuna Salad Sandwich

Eggs and Dill Tuna Salad sandwich on a plate

Boil some eggs to add to this tuna salad over the weekend. If you keep canned tuna on hand and hard-boiled eggs in the fridge, it only takes a second to whip up this simple sandwich filling. Fresh dill and dill relish give it more character. Pro tip: line your bread with lettuce leaves to keep the salad from making your sandwich go soggy.

Chicken Salad Sandwich

Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Use canned, leftover, or shredded rotisserie chicken for this sandwich filling that definitely beats cold cuts. Chopped hard-boiled egg, celery, dill pickle relish, and red or white onion gives it both texture and flavor. This is another salad you can make on the weekend (maybe double the recipe!) and then the whole family can use during the week. Try stuffing into a pita, wrapping in a tortilla, or on white or whole-grain bread.

Hummus Avocado Wrap

Vegan Hummus Avocado Wrap

For a super-fast and filling lunch wrap, nestle hummus, avocado, bean sprouts, and cucumber in the wrap of your choice. Swap out the fillings to suit your tastes, or try a flavored hummus for a fun twist. We recommend skipping the tomatoes, which can make a wrap go watery (especially if they’re super juicy).

Peanut Butter Banana Roll-Ups

Peanut Butter Banana Roll-Ups

For a speedy and nutritious meat-free sandwich that tastes extra special but takes just minutes to prepare, roll up a banana and nut butter in a whole wheat wrap. A lot of school lunchrooms are peanut-free these days, so swap out the peanut butter with almond butter instead (if that’s allowed), or a seed butter like sesame or pumpkin.

Classic Turkey Club

Turkey Club Sandwich

A diner-style club sandwich has become a classic for a reason. Grab leftover roasted turkey or chicken, some fresh sliced tomatoes, crisp lettuce, bacon, and mayonnaise and slap it on some white bread for a simple and satisfying sandwich.

Ploughman’s Lunch


If you (or your kids) get sick of the standard sandwich, disassemble it into a British-style ploughman’s lunch. Just pack some sliced hard cheese, crusty bread, some olives and pickles, a hard-boiled egg or two, and whatever fresh veggies sound good at the time.

Caprese Sandwich or Salad

Caprese Sandwich
The Spruce

For a meat-free Italian classic that makes the most of late-summer vegetables, go for a caprese salad sandwich. Slice up fresh mozzarella, a fresh tomato, and grab some fresh basil from the garden then lay it all on an Italian roll. Swap out the bread for lettuce or spring mix for a grain-free option.

Tzatziki and Dippers

Tzatziki: Cucumber Yogurt Dip

Pack a little pot of creamy, garlicky, lemony tzatziki dip with pre-cut fresh vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, radishes, bell peppers, baby carrots, and celery as well as pita points for a simple lunch that kids and grown-ups will love. Tzatziki is easy to make, but you can also find single-serving cups at the grocery store, sometimes stocked right next to pre-cut veggies.

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