If you’re looking for healthy packed lunch ideas for adults, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve packed my fair share of lunches for work or school, so I’m sharing some of my favorite recipes and tips. Lunch can get pretty boring, especially if you’re eating the same thing all the time. Some people try to mix it up and make their lunches more interesting or just see what everyone is talking about with all of these “healthy packed lunch ideas for adults”. We all know this is supposed to be part of a healthy lifestyle, but we don’t always have time to cook 5 different meals in the morning and pack them up. This is when you need something quick, easy, cheap, and delicious!
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Healthy Packed Lunch Ideas For Adults
Where Better To Start Than With Your Lunch Box?
After all, we all have to eat lunch every day, but there’s no reason it has to be thesamelunch every day. Sure, it’s easy to keep packing the same old turkey sandwich and apple and chips, Monday through Friday-but then one day, after three weeks straight of the same thing, you can find yourself pulling out that box at lunchtime and realizing you justcan’t faceone more turkey sandwich.
And next thing you know, you’re hitting the drive-through and wolfing down a bacon double cheeseburger and spending the rest of the afternoon feeling bloated and greasy.So stop that Micky D’s run before it starts with a little lunchtime variety. Here’s a whole slew of fresh ideas for lunchtime-some from my blog, some from friends-that should keep your taste buds interested all month long.
I know, I know!
You all love those very expensive sandwiches from the deli next door!
I do too! Guilty!
But guess what? Making a fantastic packed lunch box is a great way to save money! And before you object, I know that packing lunch every day can be challenging. But a bit of planning goes a long way.
It’s not just about saving money. It’s also about eating healthy, wholesome food rich in protein, fiber, and no processed fats! Byeating a healthy lunch, you’ll feel fuller and more energized throughout the day.
And once you try thesequick and easy lunch ideas, I am sure you’ll be more motivated to stick to this new habit.
These lunch box ideas for adults not only look delicious, but they are super easy to make ahead! They all take between 10 to 30 minutes and are cheap and easy to make, even if cooking isn’t your thing.
And if you are a great cook, even better! You’ll pack these lunch boxes so quickly that you’ll have plenty of time to relax and count the money you saved from buying a ready-made lunch!
Plus, kids will love them too!
Here are my favorite quick and healthy lunch boxes, perfect on the go and all ready in less than 30 minutes!
1. Italian Lunch Box
With my Italian roots, I had to have an Italian Lunch Box! I love all Mediterranean food, and this healthy lunch box reminds me of the sunny Italian summers, with the smell of fresh basil and pesto!
- A fresh mozzarella
- A couple of fresh tomatoes
- Green and black olives
- Dressing: extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper
- A toasted slice of bread
- Red and green grapes
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2. Vegan Lunch Box
If you are looking for a healthy plant-based lunch, this delicious make-ahead vegan lunch box is perfect for you.
- Vegan salad: cucumber, chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, brown rice, fresh parsley, green and black olives, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper
- An avocado
- A lemon wedge
- Celery and carrot sticks
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3. Energy BoostLunch Box
If you have a sweet tooth or prefer to snack instead of having a proper lunch, you need to try this energy-boost lunch box! You can prep this box in record time, either in the evening before you go to bed or in the morning before you leave the house.
- Greek yogurt or Coconut yogurt (for a vegan alternative)
- Maple syrup
- Mixed nuts: almonds, walnuts, and cashew nuts
- Fresh berries
- A sliced red apple
- A tablespoon of peanut or
4. Protein Lunch Box
Withroasted chickenbreast, boiled eggs, and peanut butter, this lunch box is rich in protein!
- Roasted chickenbreast
- Cherry tomatoes
- 2 boiled eggs
- A slicedred apple
- A tablespoon of peanut or
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5. Greek Lunch Box
Another Mediterranean-inspired lunch box, filled with a delicious Greek salad, brown rice, and grapes!
- Greek salad: cucumber, chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, feta, fresh parsley, green and black olives, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper
- Brown rice
- A lemon wedge
- Red and green grapes
And if you love Mediterranean flavors, check out these other 2 great lunch ideas:
1. Mediterranean Lunch Box ~ 2. Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
What do you pack in a lunch box?
Food in your lunch box should be easy and simple to prepare. You also need to make sure you pick food that will store well. No one wants a soggy salad or a sad-looking sandwich!
In my experience, these are the best types of food that are the perfect foods to use:
always go for fresh fruit! Pick fruit that can last a few days stored in the fridge, and go for seasonal as much as possible (to help you save money). Apples are a great choice. I also love fresh grapes and berries!
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opt for vegetables that are quick and easy to prepare, such as cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks, celery, and cucumber.
Rice, noodles, couscous, quinoa, and pasta:
I prefer to go for brown rice and wholemeal pasta to add more fiber to my diet!
a great source of fiber and great to fill you up. Legumes are perfect for your lunch box – chickpeas, lentils, and beans are all great!
Cheese and yogurt:
cheese like fresh mozzarella or a chunk of parmesan is great for energy and easy to prepare. Yogurt is great if you love a sweet alternative for your lunch!
Dips and nut butter:
dips like are a great addition to a healthy lunch. Rich in protein, they are perfectly eaten with carrot and celery sticks and take no time to prepare. Peanut butter and almond butter are also great with sliced apples!
Chicken And boiled eggs:
easy to prepare and a great source of protein.
Bread and crackers:
I know many people these days prefer a low-carb diet, but I love to include a fresh slice of bread or focaccia in my lunch box. Crackers,pita bread, and rice cakes are great too!
almonds, walnuts, cashew nuts, etc., are a great source of healthy fats and protein and are perfect for grazing when you start to feel hungry.
I know I am talking about healthy lunch ideas! But who doesn’t need a boost of energy in the afternoon? You can add a couple of pieces of dark chocolate to your lunch box for that much-needed sweet treat!
If you want to become a packed lunch expert, check out these smart tips & tricks! They’ll help you create delicious lunch box ideas for work in no time.
1. Keep Them Simple!
The key to great healthy lunches is to keep them simple! Use real food, and prepare as much as possible ahead of time. Pick food that doesn’t need to be cooked or requires little effort and is easily stored in the fridge for a few days.
2. Keep Them Healthy!
Pack more fruit and veggies in your lunch box. This will help you lower your calories, eat less saturated fat, and have a much more balanced diet!
3. Use Leftovers
If you don’t want to set time aside to prepare your homemade lunches, one of the best tricks that will save you time and money is to make a double portion of your dinner and use it as lunch as well!
4. Make Enough For A Couple Of Meals
If you don’t want to cook too many different recipes, make enough food for a couple of lunch boxes. This will help you to save time!
5. Cook In A Batch On Sunday
If you don’t like the idea of leftovers, try to make ahead a big batch of lunch boxes on Sunday. You can meal prep all your lunches for the week and refrigerate or freeze them. Then, grab your lunch box in the morning, and go to work!
6. Or Think About Your Lunch Box Ideas While Preparing Dinner
If cooking in a batch isn’t for you, but you want to optimize time in the kitchen, prepare your lunch box the evening before while you are cooking dinner. You already have all your essentials out (like a chopping board and knife), and you can save on washing up time!
7. Get The Right Lunch Box!
forhealthy lunch boxesare made of glass. I prefer them to plastic containers for several reasons:
- You can see what’s in them easily.
- You can use them in microwaves.
- They won’t alter the taste of food, even if it’s left in there for a few days.
- When warming up your food, glass containers won’t release any chemicals at the hot temperature as plastic containers can.
If you do pick plastic containers, make sure they are
These are a great alternative to glass containers if you like minimalistic design. I love their simple design! Perfect for adult Lunchables.
8. Keep Some Essentials At Your Desk
You want to make sure that eating lunch at work is as comfortable as possible. Keep some silverware and seasoning in your desk drawer: a small bottle of olive oil, salt, and pepper will make your lunch more attractive!
- Quick and easy to make
- Perfect to prep in advance
- No need to reheat it in the microwave
- Make with wholesome, nourishing ingredients
- Options for everyone: gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free
- So good!
And if you are looking for something quick, check out these delicious
And if you make any of these easy lunch box ideas, please leave a comment and a rating and let me know how much you liked it!
Who says bringing lunch from home needs to be boring? These 5 healthy lunch box ideas are perfect for work and are ready in less than 30 minutes!
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Italian Lunch Box
- Slice the tomatoes and mozzarella and place them in the
- Add pesto on top and a handful of pine nuts. Finish with fresh basil leaves.
- In a small separate container prepare the dressing: mix olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper.
- Toast a slice of bread and add it to the container. Wash your grapes and add them too. And you are ready to go!
Vegan Lunch Box
- Prep the salad: chop the cucumber, cut in half the cherry tomatoes, add the cooked brown rice, chickpeas, chopped fresh parsley, green and black olives, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper, and mix.
- Slice the avocado in half and remove the skin. Add the lemon wedge next to it.
- Place the carrot and celery sticks in the container with a few tablespoons of
Energy Boost Lunch Box
- This lunch box is super easy.You don’t actually have to cook anything.Just place the greek yogurt or coconut yogurt (for a vegan alternative) in the lunch box, add the maple syrup, and top with the mixed nuts.
- Slice the apple and add the peanut or
- Add the mixed berries to the box and you are ready to go!
Protein Lunch Box
- Roast the chicken breast: preheat the oven to 220°C/425F and line a
- with greaseproof paper.
- Season thechicken with olive oil, the juice of one lemon, salt, pepper, and oregano. Place on the baking tray and cook for 15-20 minutes.
- Slice the chicken and add the cherry tomatoes, previously seasoned with olive oil, salt, and a bit of oregano.
- Slice the boiled eggs.
- Slice the apple and add the peanut or
Greek Lunch Box
- Prep the Greek salad: chop the cucumber, cut in half the cherry tomatoes, add the chickpeas, chopped fresh parsley, green and black olives, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper, and mix.
- Add the cooked brown rice and lemon wedge in the
- Add the fresh grapes.
Nutritional information estimate:
- Italian Lunch Box: 670 kcal
- Vegan Lunch Box: 653 kcal
- Energy Boost Lunch Box: 504kcal
- Protein Lunch Box: 576 kcal
- Greek Lunch Box: 655 kcal