Healthy Lunches The Entire Family Will Love
Between getting out the door in time for school drop-off and making sure everyone in the family --wife, husband, kids, and pets-- are fed, lunch can seem like a distant thought. Here are a few lunch ideas that can be easily prepped the night before, or even the Sunday before, so rushed mornings are never the reason for an unhealthy or unsatisfying lunch.
For The Kids...
# 1: Cheese roll ups (whole grain tortilla, cream cheese, cheddar cheese slices), apple slices, peanut butter chocolate chip energy bite, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers and white bean dip.
# 2 Bean & cheese burrito, peach slices, mini almond shortbread cookie, cherry tomatoes, and pineapple.
# 3 Whole wheat English muffin pizzas (top English muffin halves with tomato sauce, a sprinkle of oregano, & grated mozzarella. Melt cheese under broiler for 3-4 minutes), bell pepper, carrot sticks, raw almonds and dark chocolate chips, black olives, and apple slices.
# 4 Cherry tomato, apple, and cheese skewers (cut sharp points off skewers), cantaloupe, mini chocolate chip banana muffin, bell peppers & snap peas, cucumber slices, and white bean dip (made with a combo of cannellini beans and chickpeas).
For The Parents...
Spaghetti Squash Toss
- 1 cup Baby spinach, torn
- 6 Cherry tomatoes
- 1/3 cup unsalted Chickpeas,
- 1 1/2 cups Easy baked spaghetti squash
- 1/2 tsp Garlic
- 1/4 cup Red onion
- 1/2 tsp fresh Thyme
- a dash of salt
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp Feta cheese
Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high. Add onion and garlic; sauté 4 minutes. Add chickpeas, thyme, and tomatoes; cook 1 minute. Add spaghetti squash, spinach, and salt; toss gently to combine. Cook 2 minutes or until spinach is just wilted. Sprinkle with cheese.
vegetarian, gluten-free, low-carb alternative to pasta
Chicken Teriyaki Rice Bowls
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces
- salt & pepper
for the sauce:
- 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tbsp rice or apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- steamed broccoli
Cook rice according to instructions on the packaging.
Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper and place in large non-stick skillet.
Cook until done, stirring often.
In a small bowl or a measuring cup, combine brown sugar, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, vinegar and cornstarch. Whisk together until there are no cornstarch lumps. Add sauce to chicken and cook stirring constantly, until it thickens into shiny glaze.
Remove from heat and serve immediately with rice and steamed broccoli.
One Pan Healthy Sausage & Veggies
- 2 cups (~1 small) red potato
- 3/4ths pound green beans
- 1 large head of broccoli (~ 1 and 1/2 cups)
- 1 and 1/2 cups chopped bell peppers 2 large or 6-7 mini sweet bell peppers
- 9 ounces smoked sausage I use turkey or chicken, not ground sausage
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Serve with: fresh parsley, quinoa/rice, lots of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Line a large sheet pan with foil or parchment paper.
Prep the veggies: chop the red potatoes (pretty small pieces here so they will be tender in time), trim the green beans and halve (see video above recipe), chop the broccoli, chop the peppers into thick squares, and coin the sausage in thick slices.
Place all the veggies and sausage on a sheet pan. Pour the olive oil and all the spices on top. Toss to evenly coat all the veggies and meat.
Bake 15 minutes, remove from the oven and flip/stir all the veggies around. Return to the oven and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until vegetables are crisp tender and sausage is browned.
If desired, sprinkle freshly grated Parmesan cheese over the veggies and sausage as soon as they come out of the oven.
Enjoy with rice or quinoa and fresh parsley if desired.
These two infographics also always come in handy when I'm in a salad recipe rut or when I need to spice up my homemade hummus (which is fantastic as a dip, or as a spread in a sandwich, burrito, or wrap, or as part of a bowl!).
What are your weekly go-to's and what are you dying to try?!