12 Healthy Lunch Recipes to Keep You Satisfied & Fueled Throughout the Day

12 Healthy Lunch Recipes to Keep You Satisfied & Fueled Throughout the Day

Lunch is such an important meal of the day. A healthy lunch can fuel your body and provide energy for your brain to keep you working at your best throughout the afternoon. Skipping lunch can at best lead to feelings of hunger throughout the afternoon, and at worst, lead to energy crashes, irritability, distraction, fatigue, headaches, and stomach pains. Keep your body and brain going throughout the day with a healthy lunch!

Below I’ve listed some of my favorite recipes for fueling up at lunch. These recipes are easy to make or prep ahead and are filled with clean ingredients that will leave you feeling satisfied throughout the afternoon.

Salads

1. Mayo-Less Mediterranean Tuna Salad

This fresh tuna recipe is so delicious, it will have you wondering why you ever made tuna salad with mayonnaise! Forget the mayo, this mayo-less Mediterranean tuna salad is a winner. Cucumber, radishes, and celery bring all the crunch to this salad. Fresh mint and parsley, and a zesty Dijon dressing pack in the addicting flavor. This tuna salad would be wonderful in a sandwich or a wrap, but I always eat it with whole-grain crackers.

Salad Ingredients:
1 Can Tuna
1-2 Celery Stalks, Chopped
¼ English Cucumber, Chopped
2 Radishes, Chopped
1 Green Onion, Chopped
¼ Red Onion, Finely Chopped
¼ Cup Kalamata Olives, Halved
Small Handful Parsley, Chopped
5-7 Mint Leaves, Chopped

Zesty Dressing Ingredients:
1 Tsp Dijon
Juice of 1 Lime
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
Pinch of Salt & Pepper
Red Pepper Flakes to Taste

Instructions:

  1. Drain tuna, combine with chopped veggies and herbs.
  2. Combine dressing ingredients and whisk well. Drizzle over salad. 
  3. Toss everything and enjoy!

2. Thai Crunch Chicken Salad

If you love a good crunch, this Thai crunch chicken salad will be right up your alley. With fresh bell pepper, edamame, Thai chili-lime flavored cashews, and shredded cabbage there’s a lot to crunch on in this flavorful lineup. Chicken and avocado bring a boost of healthy fats and proteins to the mix, all served up with a homemade Asian ginger dressing.

Salad Ingredients:
½ Head Romaine Lettuce, Chopped
1 Cup Shredded Cabbage
½ Cup Shelled Edamame
½ Cup Orange Bell Pepper, Chopped
½ Chicken Breast, Cubed
¼ English Cucumber, Chopped
Handful Cilantro, Roughly Chopped
8-10 Thai Chili Lime Cashews (Or Regular Cashews)
Lime Wedges (If Serving to A Crowd Leave On The Side)
A Sprinkle of Sesame Seeds

Dressing Ingredients:
2 Tbsp toasted Sesame Oil
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Low Sodium Soy Sauce
2 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
2 Tbsp Maple Syrup
2 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1 Tsp Ginger, Minced

Instructions:

  1. Make the salad dressing by combining all the ingredients and whisking until completely combined.
  2. Assemble salad by starting with a bed of lettuce, top with cabbage, edamame, orange bell pepper, chicken breast, cucumber, cilantro and cashews.
  3. Toss salad.
  4. Drizzle with salad dressing and a hearty sprinkle of sesame seeds, toss again.
  5. Serve with fresh lime wedges.

3. Easy Summer Cobb Salad

If you’re a Cobb salad lover this lightened-up summer version is the salad for you. Get all your protein needs for the day with fresh grilled chicken, a hard-boiled egg, and a splurge of bacon. This beautiful salad showcases blueberries, fresh corn, and avocado for flavorful bursts of fresh summer produce. top with your favorite fresh herbs, a drizzle of olive oil, and white balsamic vinegar, and fresh cracked pepper for a lighter version, or your salad dressing of choice.

Salad Ingredients:
1 Head of Romaine Lettuce, Chopped
½ Grilled Chicken Breast, Chopped
1-Piece Bacon, Chopped
1 Hard-Boiled Egg, Sliced
¼ Avocado, Sliced
1 Handful Blueberries
¼ Cup Fresh Corn
¼ English Cucumber, Chopped
1 Tbsp Blue Cheese (Or Other Cheese of Your Preference)

Dressing Ingredients:
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1-2 Tbsp White Balsamic Vinegar
Fresh Cracked Pepper to Taste

Instructions:

  1. Start by adding a big bed of romaine lettuce to your bowl.
  2. Top with the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Drizzle with olive oil and white balsamic vinegar.
  4. Finish by topping with fresh cracked pepper to taste.

4. Fall Harvest Salad

This delicious fall harvest salad is the perfect mix of sweet and salty, soft and crunchy, and includes roasted butternut squash, quinoa, apples, avocado, and pepitas; but it would also be great with pomegranates, roasted sweet potato, carrots, red onions, and your favorite cheese. Feel free to experiment and make this tasty salad your own!

Salad Ingredients:
Mixed Greens
½ Cup Roasted Butternut Squash
½ Cup Cooked Quinoa
½ Red Apple, Thinly Sliced
½ Green Apple, Thinly Sliced
½ Avocado, Thinly Sliced
Small Handful Pepitas
Small Handful Dried Cranberries

Dressing Ingredients:
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
1 Tsp Honey
Fresh Cracked Pepper to Taste

Instructions:

  1. Prepare quinoa and butternut squash according to the package.
  2. On a big bed of lettuce top with quinoa, butternut squash, red and green apples, avocado, pepitas, and dried cranberries.

5. Asian Kale Salad

This Asian kale salad is a perfect light lunch when topped with grilled chicken or salmon. It’s not only delicious, but also packed with healthy nutrients. From kale which is a powerhouse superfood, to the peppers, carrots, and cabbage which add a variety of colors to your plate. The more colors in your meal, the more nutrient-dense with vitamins and minerals is your meal!

Dressing Ingredients:
⅓ Cup Olive Oil
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
⅓ Cup Rice Wine Vinegar
2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
2 Tbsp Maple Syrup
1 Tbsp Red Chili Flakes (To taste)
1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
Pinch of Salt

Dressing Instructions:

  1. Lightly sauté Olive oil and garlic in a pan. 
  2. Combine with the rest of salad dressing ingredients. Whisk to combine.
  3. Taste and add more of anything to your liking.

Salad Ingredients:
4 Cups Kale, Chopped
¾ Cup Purple Cabbage
¾ Cup Shredded Carrots
1 Red Bell Pepper, Chopped
5-6 Green Onions, Chopped
Sesame Seeds
2-3 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salad Dressing

Salad Instructions:

  1. Put chopped kale in a big bowl, and drizzle with olive oil. 
  2. Massage kale gently and thoroughly until covered in olive oil.
  3. Add Purple Cabbage, shredded carrots, bell pepper, green onions, and finally sprinkle with sesame seeds (amount to your liking).
  4. Pour salad dressing on top of salad, toss to combine!
  5. Enjoy!

Wraps

6. Healthy Pesto Chicken Wrap

Are you a pesto lover? I always find myself leaning towards pesto on my pasta in the spring and summer, it’s a little lighter and oozes with flavor. This pesto chicken wrap makes that same delicious pesto flavor portable. Feel free to mix up the included veggies and toppings to your liking - I’m all about halved red grapes, arugula, pine nuts, and shaved parmesan as additions or swap-outs here.

Ingredients:
Tortilla Wrap (Whole Wheat, Spinach, Or Sundried tomato Are All Great Options)
½ Grilled Chicken Breast, Chopped
Pesto (Pre-packaged from the store, ideally fresh and refrigerated rather than jarred)
Spinach, A Handful of
1/3 Red Bell Pepper, Sliced into Strips
¼ Cucumber, Sliced into Strips
¼ Avocado, Sliced

Instructions:

  1. Prep ingredients and assemble.
  2. Enjoy!

7. Healthy Homemade Quinoa Feta Wrap

This vegan and vegetarian-friendly wrap will please even the pickiest meat-eaters. It’s packed with essential protein, healthy fats, and nutrient-dense carbs for a filling and satisfying meal that’s easy to enjoy on-the-go.

The wrap is mostly made up of this delicious power quinoa salad, which is packed with nutrients. When paired with avocado and hummus, the flavor is a match made in heaven! When assembling your wrap, use a whole grain wrap to add more protein and fiber, or yummy flavored tortillas like spinach or sundried tomato as pictured. If you eat meat, feel free to add grilled chicken, or sliced turkey to make this meal a bit heartier.

Salad Ingredients:
1 Cup Quinoa
1 Can Black Beans (drained and rinsed)
1 Cup Spinach, Chopped
½ Cup Green Onions, chopped
½ Cup Cilantro, chopped
1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes, halved
½ Cup Feta Cheese
2 Limes, Juice of

Wrap Ingredients:
Hummus
Tortilla Wrap (Whole Grain, Spinach or Sun-Dried Tomato recommended)
¼ Avocado, sliced

Instructions:

  1. Prep quinoa salad.
  2. Assemble wrap, by spreading hummus on tortilla, adding a generous helping of quinoa salad, and topping with sliced avocado.
  3. Wrap it all up and enjoy!

8. Classic Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Forget boring salads, these classic chicken lettuce wraps are just as nutritious, and deliver on the flavor! This recipe is so refreshing and tasty, it’s one you’ll find yourself coming back to again and again. This one is perfect for meal prepping ahead. Just keep the chicken mixture in the fridge or freezer, reheat, and wrap with lettuce!

Chicken Mixture Ingredients:
1 Lb. Ground Chicken
1 Red Bell Pepper, Diced
½ Lb. Mushrooms (Cremini Or White Mushrooms), Finely Chopped
½ Cup Water Chestnuts, Diced
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 Tsp Ginger, Minced
1 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
6 Green Onions, Chopped, Scallions, and Green Parts Separated
2 Heads Butter Lettuce

Sauce Ingredients:
3 Tbsp Thai Sweet Chili Sauce
3 Tbsp Hoisin Sauce
3 Tbsp Low Sodium Soy Sauce
2 Tbsp Sriracha
2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 ½ Tbsp Rice Vinegar
4 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1 Tbsp Ginger, Minced 

Instructions:

  1. Prep veggies. 
  2. Combine sauce ingredients together, whisk until completely combined.
  3. In a bowl, mix 2 Tbsp of sauce into the ground chicken.
  4. In a large pan, heat 2 Tbsp vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken to cook, breaking up and stirring until browned and fully cooked, 5-6 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  5. Add 1 more Tbsp vegetable oil to pan, add scallion whites, ginger, garlic, and cook for about 1 minute, stirring frequently. 
  6. Add mushrooms and cook until they release their liquid, about 3 minutes.
  7. Return chicken to pan and add water chestnuts, bell pepper, and the remaining sauce. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until it’s cooked through and sauce begins to thicken.
  8. Stir in scallion greens.
  9. Serve with washed and separated lettuce leaves.

9.Korean Chicken Lettuce Wraps

These Korean-inspired chicken lettuce wraps are a quick and healthy lunch or dinner option and packed with flavor! The tender and juicy chicken is marinated overnight in a slightly sweet, tangy, and spicy sauce, quickly seared on the stove and wrapped in a bed of lettuce. I like to top mine with cucumber, chopped cilantro and green onions, and sesame seeds. But it would be great with avocado or other fresh vegetables.

Salad Ingredients:
2 ½ Tbsp Low Sodium Soy Sauce
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar Or Honey
1 ½ Sesame Oil
1 Tbsp Chili Garlic Sauce
1-1 ½ Lb. Chicken Tenders
2 Tsp Olive Oil
2 Tsp Sesame Seeds
1 Head Butter Lettuce

Toppings (optional):
½ Hothouse Cucumber Thinly Sliced
3 Green Onions, Sliced
Fresh Cilantro Leaves, Roughly Chopped
Salt & Pepper to Taste

Instructions:

  1. Season chicken tenders with salt & pepper. 
  2. Combine soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, and chili garlic sauce and whisk to combine.
  3. In a bowl, add chicken tenders and cover completely with sauce. Cover with plastic wrap and let marinate in the fridge for 1 hour to 1 day.
  4. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add marinated chicken tenders to skillet, cooking 5 minutes or so on each side, until chicken is fully cooked and browned on each side. Flip for 1 more minute on each side to coat each side in sauce.
  5. Serve chicken with trimmed and washed lettuce leaves.
  6. Top with sesame seeds, cucumbers, cilantro, green onions, and sauce of choice.

Grains

10. Mediterranean Couscous Salad

In for a salad without the lettuce? This couscous chickpea salad brings sweet, spicy, tangy, and savory all into one for a nutrient-packed side, or main dish! Enjoy all of the nutrients from seasoned and roasted chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and fresh herbs. It all comes together on a bed of fluffy couscous and sweet and tangy dressing.

Chickpeas Ingredients:
1 Can Chickpeas, Well Rinsed and Drained
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
½ Tsp Each: Ground Cumin, Ground Chili Powder
¼ Tsp Garlic Powder
Optional: ¼ Tsp Cayenne Pepper (For Spice)
Salt and Pepper to Taste  

Salad Ingredients:
1 Cup Couscous (Cooked According to Package)
1 ½ Cups Chopped Cucumber
1 ½ Cups Cherry Tomatoes, Halved
½ Cup Kalamata Olives, Halved
¼ Cup Italian Parsley, Finely Chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper, Chopped

Salad Dressing Ingredients:
4 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Lemons, Zest and Juice of
1 ½ Tbsp Honey
1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
1 Tsp Dried Oregano

To Top:
Feta Cheese

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place chickpeas in a bowl, add 1 Tbsp Olive oil, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Mix well, making sure chickpeas are completely covered in spices. Spread chickpeas in an even layer on a baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes, tossing halfway, and cooked until crisp and lightly browned.
  2. Prepare couscous according to package, and fluff with a fork when finished.
  3. While couscous is cooking, prepare veggies, by chopping everything up if you haven’t already. 
  4. Prepare dressing by adding olive oil, lemon zest and juice, honey, Dijon mustard, and dried oregano. Whisk until combined.
  5. To serve as a salad combine couscous, veggies, cooled chickpeas, and salad dressing in a bowl. toss well and serve with feta cheese, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. If meal prepping to save for later, keep salad dressing separate, as this salad doesn’t save well if already dressed.

11. Mayo-Less Mediterranean Tuna Salad

This tex mex quinoa salad combines the delicious flavors of summer with nutrient-dense ingredients for a healthy power-packed snack or meal. Prep in advance and save this dish in the fridge for up to 5 days. Even better, it travels beautifully!

Salad Ingredients:
1 Cup Quinoa, cooked according to package
1 Can Pinto Beans (or black beans), drained and rinsed
1 Cup Corn (about 2 corn cobs)
½ English Cucumber, chopped
½ Red Onions, diced
Big Handful of Spinach, chopped
½ Cup Cilantro, chopped
½ Cup Green Onions, chopped
Sprinkle of Feta Cheese

Dressing Ingredients:
¼ Cup Red Wine Vinegar
½ tsp Cumin
¼ tsp Chili Powder
Ground Pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Combine Salad ingredients and mix well.
  2. Make dressing by combining red wine vinegar, cumin, chili powder, and ground pepper. Whisk to combine, and drizzle dressing over salad.
  3. Toss salad. Serve, or keep in fridge up to 5 days.

12. Quinoa Greek Salad

This Quinoa Greek salad is perfect as a side dish, wrapped into a tortilla or whole grain wrap, or in a big bowl topped with grilled chicken or avocado for a full meal. This salad is bursting with flavors and a powerhouse of nutrients that will keep you fueled and satisfied throughout the day! Meal prep a big batch to last in the fridge for up to 5 days. If meal prepping, leave the dressing on the side until ready to serve.

Salad Ingredients:
½ English Cucumber, Chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper, Chopped
1 Cup Cherry tomatoes
1 Cup Kalamata Olives
¼ Cup Red Onion
1 Cup Uncooked Quinoa
½ Cup Feta Cheese 

Dressing Ingredients:
¼ Cup Red Wine Vinegar
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
½ Tsp Dried Basil
¼ Tsp Garlic Powder
Salt & Pepper to Taste

Instructions:

  1. Cook quinoa according to the package.
  2. Chop all veggies and put in a large bowl with quinoa.
  3. Top with Feta Cheese and mix well.
  4. Whisk dressing ingredients and pour on top of salad immediately before serving. If meal prepping, keep dressing separate as it saves better if kept separately. 
  5. Serve immediately or keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.
12 Healthy Lunch Recipes to Satisfy and Fuel Infographics
12 Healthy Lunch Recipes to Satisfy and Fuel Infographics

Other blog articles you may enjoy:

Recommended Products:


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published