Updated: Sep 1, 2020
Lunch can be hard at work. If you are like most, you rarely get more than a few minutes to actually eat. Often, there are meetings or errands that have to be done, which means we are eating in front of our computers or at our desk. In fact, more than 6 in 10 professionals eat lunch at their desk. (Source: TriCityMed) That means if you didn't bring your lunch to work, you'll have to go to the cafeteria and pick from a menu that is probably not the healthiest.
In order to avoid the unhealthy lunch cycle, a little planning over the weekend means you will have a healthy option to eat at your desk. Making lunch on the weekend does not have to take a long time. Most of the recipes I share below can be made quickly on the weekend, packaged up into single servings and reheated. Some of the recipes can actually be dinner first with left-overs for lunch. This gets you an even bigger bang for your buck.
Meal planning is just one step to making a healthy lunch. The containers used for storing and reheating lunch also need to be considered. Plastic containers, even if they are BPA-free, are the worst containers to store and reheat food. We've been taught that BPA-free is what we need to look for. This has given us a false sense of security that BPA-free plastics are safe.
However, plastic containers have a lot of chemicals in addition to BPA that can cause havoc in our bodies. Even the microwave safe plastic containers are not safe. When heating up food in the microwave that is in plastic, chemicals leach into the food in the container. (Source: The Guardian) In general, stay away from plastic! Use glass whenever possible.
Another way to have a healthier lunch, is to strive to have at least 80% of the ingredients be organic. Organic foods are healthier because they are not grown with chemicals and pesticides. As a result, organic foods have higher nutrient content which means you will naturally eat less. This is great for helping you achieve either your weight loss or weight maintenance goals. There are many other ways to eat healthier but I want to get to the delicious recipes.
3 Ingredient Creamy Tomato Shells from Pinch of Yum. I love pasta for lunch because it can be eaten cold or hot. Pair with a green salad to get some veggies in your day. This recipe is vegan! It uses cashews to make the tomato sauce creamy. If you are gluten-free, there are plenty of gluten-free pasta options to try. Click here for the recipe.
3 Ingredient Baked Cheddar Cauliflower Bites from Gimme Delicious. They may look fancy and as if they took a lot of time BUT they only take 22 minutes from start to finish. Plus, you can use frozen cauliflower instead of fresh. Click here for the recipe.