13 Healthy Lunches That Are Way Better Than a Sad Salad

Maggie Griswold
13 Healthy Lunches That Are Way Better Than a Sad Salad
Photo: Dishing Out Health.

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Whether you spend most of your days in an office, eat in the back of a retail storeroom (Been there, baby.) or find yourself at home with an entire kitchen at your disposal, figuring out what to eat for lunch can be a true challenge. Sometimes you eat closer to breakfast hours, and sometimes you’re so focused on work that you suddenly realize it’s 2 p.m. and you’ve eaten a singular granola bar. Shit happens, but these healthy lunch recipes can help you plan ahead so you always have something delicious to look forward to whenever you get around to eating lunch.

If you’ve found yourself working from home and now have a kitchen to use instead of just a microwave and a fridge, take advantage of it. There are so many delicious lunch ideas that require just a little bit more time than a previously-packed salad or sandwich, and they’re totally worth it. Taking time out of your day to breath and do something with your hands (other than type on a computer) can drastically improve your mental health. And if you don’t have a set schedule in place, make sure to take an actual lunch break. Your brain will thank you.

No matter how or when you eat lunch, there’s no denying that the healthy lunch recipes below will satiate any palate. Scavenge through your fridge to find leftover veggies you might have missed or look for ways to incorporate the rice that’s been sitting around for a few days. There’s no excuse for a sad salad anymore, y’all. It’s time to step it up and enjoy lunch for once—starting with these easy and healthy recipes.

1. Poached Eggs on Sourdough

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Poached Egg on Sourdough

The Culinary Chase.

Whether you eat lunch at 11 a.m. or 2 p.m., a poached egg on sourdough with all the accouterments is never a bad idea. You can easily scavenge your fridge for leftover veggies to add to this healthy lunch further.

2. Pesto Tortellini Salad

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Tortellini Salad

Dishing Out Health.

Yes, we’re ruling out sad salads, but not delicious and innovative ones, like this pesto tortellini salad.

3. Turkey, Green Bean & Basil Stir Fry

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Turkey Green Bean Basil Stir Fry

The Defined Dish.

This easy turkey, basil and green bean stir fry is honestly perfect for both lunch and dinner—and we won’t judge you if you eat it twice in one day.

4. Sweet Potato Black Bean Soup

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Sweet Potato Black Bean Soup

Nibble and Dine.

A simple soup is an obvious lunch choice, but this sweet potato and black bean soup kicks things up a notch.

5. Everything Chicken Salad

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Everything Chicken Salad

The Skinny Fork.

If you’ve never had Everything Bagel seasoning, it’s a must-try, and this everything chicken salad recipe uses it to amp up a lunchtime classic.

6. Quick Curried Veggie Brown Rice Bowls

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Curried Veggie Brown Rice Bowl

Eat Happy Eat Healthy.

This hearty curried veggie and brown rice bowl is packed full of delicious flavors you’ll want to eat again and again (and again).

7. Brussels Sprouts & Navel Oranges Salad

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Brussels Sprouts and Navel Orange Salad

The Gourmet Gourmand.

This light and fresh brussels sprouts and navel oranges salad is ideal for days when you don’t want anything that might make you sleepy in the afternoon. A heavy lunch can really slow you down!

8. Chicken Sesame Noodles

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Chicken Sesame Noodles

Homesick Texan.

These chicken sesame noodles are a lighter alternative to your favorite take-out items—and perfect for a healthy lunch.

9. Farfalle Pasta With Fresh Salmon

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Farfalle Pasta with Fresh Salmon

Leite’s Culinaria.

For all you seafood-lovers, this farfalle and salmon pasta recipe is an easy way to incorporate fish into your lunch menu.

10. Healthy Tuna Salad With Cranberries

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Tuna Salad with Cranberries

Chelsey Amer Nutrition.

This tuna salad sandwich recipe turns an ordinary can of tuna into something truly delicious (and Insta-worthy).

11. Huevos Pericos

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Huevos Pericos

Delish D’Lites.

Huevas Pericos is basically Colombian scrambled eggs with tomatoes and scallions. It’s the ideal breakfast, lunch or dinner choice if you’ve got extra eggs around.

12. Apple & Fig Flatbread With Goat Cheese

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Apple Fig Flatbread

Simple and Savory.

This five-ingredient apple, fig and goat cheese flatbread recipe is easy to whip up in just a few minutes. Plus, you’ll get a good does of fruits and veggies.

13. Hoisin Turkey Bowls

STYLECASTER | Healthy Lunch Recipes | Hoisin Chicken Bowl

Fit Happy Foodie.

These hoisin turkey bowls are super easy to re-heat, so you can make a big batch and have lunch for days.