Easy Protein-Filled Lunch Recipes for Teens and Adults
Kids are heading back to school or you need to mix up your lunches for work, but either way you have run out of ideas! You want to eat healthy, are looking for flavorful ideas, but want a good amount of protein to get you and your family through the day, right? I do too, so I’ve gathered some of my favorite lunch ideas that are easy, can use up leftovers, take minimal prep work at the beginning of the week (or on Sunday night), and fuel us through the day.
1. Chicken and Hummus Bento Box
Hummus (you can put some in a small tupperware container or purchase the individual size), chicken strips (grill a big batch at the beginning of the week), sliced cucumbers, cherry tomatoes and pita. So easy, but so good!
2. Thai Chicken or Pork Bowl
Remember that chicken you grilled at the beginning of the week? Chop some up (or use pork) along with chopped cabbage and carrots (or buy the prepared bags of slaw with carrots), green onions, bean sprouts, peanuts and fresh cilantro leaves. Serve this all over brown rice and when it comes time for lunch drizzle over the entire bowl a Peanut Sauce (3 tbsp peanut butter, 2 tbsp lime juice, 1 tbsp soy sauce, 2 tsp brown sugar, 2 tsp chile paste (optional).
3. Caesar Salad Wrap
Lay grilled chicken, thinly sliced steak (or leave vegetarian) along with slices of red onion, chopped kale on a multi-grain wrap. Sprinkle shredded parmesan cheese over it all and wrap tightly. Serve with avocado caesar dressing (Blend 3 tbsp lemon juice, 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tbsp dijon mustard, 1 tsp minced garlic, ½ c mayo, 1 avocado, ½ tsp salt).
4. Chicken or Steak Burrito Bowl
Chop up chicken or steak (great way to use leftovers) along with corn, black beans, chopped tomatoes, green onions, and fresh cilantro leaves served over white rice. Drizzle some burrito crema sauce over the bowl and enjoy! (¼ c plain Greek yogurt, ¼ c mayo, 1 tbsp taco seasoning, 1 tbsp lime juice)
5. Steak Cobb Salad
Chop up steak along with hard boiled eggs, cherry tomatoes, green onions, and serve over a bed of spinach along with feta or blue cheese crumbled over the top. For the dressing, I make a balsamic vinaigrette with equal parts, balsamic vinegar, water and olive oil with a pinch of salt and pepper.
6. Caprese Wrap
Lay grilled chicken, thinly sliced steak (or leave vegetarian) along with slices of fresh mozzarella, chopped cherry tomatoes and torn fresh basil leaves on a tortilla and wrap tightly. Serve with the balsamic vinaigrette (shared above).
7. Chicken Salad
Use chopped or canned chicken (drained first) with a handful of dried cherries, and tbsp of mayo to make it all come together. Season with fresh torn basil or dill leaves and salt and pepper. On the side serve this with celery sticks or pita to dip and a handful of almonds for crunch.
8. Turkey Cobb Wrap
Lay turkey lunch meat, a slice of cheese, sliced tomatoes, and a piece of lettuce on a multi-grain wrap. Slice a hard-boiled egg in half and lay it on top and wrap the tortilla tightly.
9. Greek Chicken Bowl
Chop up grilled chicken along with cucumbers, red onions, and cherry tomatoes and serve over white or brown rice with feta cheese crumbled over the top. Drizzle over the bowl Tzatziki sauce (1 c plain Greek yogurt, 1 finely diced cucumber, 2 tsp chopped fresh garlic, 1 tbsp chopped fresh dill, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tsp chopped fresh mint (optional).
10. Nosh Bento Box
Want quick bites or have a grazer? Cut hardboiled eggs in half and serve them with a handful of roasted almonds, sliced crunchy apples, sliced cucumbers, and cubes of cheese (love white cheddar, harvarti dill or pepper jack).