Eat Breakfast for Lunch
Try incorporating your favorite breakfast foods into your lunch for a change of pace:
- Top a toasted whole wheat English muffin with goat cheese and sliced strawberries or almond butter and sliced bananas.
- Bring a packet of plain oatmeal, add it to a bowl, and stir in hot water or milk. Add ingredients like cinnamon, dried cherries, raisins, almonds, or pecans.
Bring Salad in a Jar
If you like hearty salads but find they often get soggy when you transport them to work, consider investing in a wide mouth, quart-sized Mason jar. Salad ingredients will stay fresh in a sealed, refrigerated jar for hours.
First, put your favorite salad dressing at the bottom of the jar.
Next, add several layers of ingredients like cherry tomatoes, peppers, carrots, cucumbers, mushrooms, corn, broccoli, black beans, chickpeas, hard-boiled eggs, or orzo.
You can include any leftover cooked veggies and grains you have on hand. At the very top, add greens like baby spinach or chopped romaine lettuce.
Be sure to keep the layer of greens separated from the dressing at the bottom so it stays dry.
When you're ready to eat, just shake the jar to coat the whole salad with dressing.
Spice Up Your Sandwich
Make your usual sandwiches more flavorful by adding condiments like chipotle mustard or spinach and artichoke hummus.
Instead of the usual cold cuts, try smoked salmon or a turkey burger. And instead of sandwich bread, use whole wheat tortillas, pita bread, or ciabatta rolls.
Keep It Simple
Remember that bringing your lunch doesn't have to be overwhelming. If you can't assemble a whole lunch in advance on some days, Brown says you can still take healthy ingredients from home.
For example, bring some leftover chicken or salmon and add it to a pasta salad that you buy at work.
For variety, Jackson Blatner suggests trying out one new lunch recipe each week. Pack that dish for lunch 2 or 3 days that week and bring leftovers from dinner on the other days. "That way, you can streamline the process of shopping for and preparing your meals," she says.