Pack a Lunch With a Healthy Punch

After you make sandwiches for the kids' lunches, pack yourself a healthy lunch to get through the afternoon slump. These recipes can be made ahead and are loaded with nutrient-rich ingredients that pack your brown-bag full of vitamins, minerals, protein, and fiber.  Perfect for grown-ups and kids with adventurous appetites.

  • Tabbouleh with Chicken and Red Pepper
    Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross

    Tabbouleh with Chicken and Red Pepper

    Use rotisserie or leftover chicken for this dish, if you like. If you're making the mixture a few hours or more in advance, store the cucumber and tomato separately and add them close to serving time to keep the salad at its best.
  • Moroccan-Spiced Bulgur and Chickpea Salad
    Becky Luigart-Stayner; Melanie J. Clarke and Celine Chenoweth

    Moroccan-Spiced Bulgur and Chickpea Salad

    Fresh mint gives this dish a pleasant aroma. Dried cranberries offer a hint of sweetness. Use any other dried fruit you like in their place: Try golden raisins, currants, dried cherries, or chopped dried apricots.
  • Ham-and-Fontina Sourdough Sandwiches
    Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Vanessa McNeil Rocchio

    Ham-and-Fontina Sourdough Sandwiches

    Bring life back into your lunch with Ham-and-Fontina Sourdough Sandwiches. Deli ham gets dressed up with a pesto-mayonnaise mixture, fontina cheese, and basil leaves.
  • Caprese Sandwich
    Photo: Annabelle Breakey; Styling: Karen Shinto

    Caprese Sandwich

    Nothing says summer like ripe heirloom tomatoes in a Caprese salad. Even better: Put the same ingredients on a roll so the bread catches all the juices.
  • <p>Kicked-Up Turkey Sandwich</p>

    Kicked-Up Turkey Sandwich

    Fig spread is rich and flavorful; watercress is crisp and hearty and holds up well in a lunch bag. Delicious with a tart pickle and pear.
  • Watermelon Salad
    Photo: Douglas Mirriam

    Watermelon Salad

    Create a refreshing salad for lunch featuring cubed watermelon, red onion, kalamata olives, mint, and feta cheese. Even with all the added flavorful ingredients, it still weighs in at only 46 calories per 1/2-cup serving.
  • Turkey Vegetable Wraps
    Photo: Oxmoor House

    Turkey Vegetable Wraps

    These wraps are super easy to prepare and are full of healthy veggies like corn and bell peppers. Coming in at about 200 calories per serving, this is a great choice for an easy and healthy lunch.
  • Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Arugula Salad
    Oxmoor House

    Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Arugula Salad

    Break out of a boring salad rut by adding grilled chicken with fresh veggies like zucchini and tomatoes. At only 243 calories per serving, you'll get a healthy lunch with protein that will help keep you full throughout the rest of the day.
  • express-lunch-plate
    Quentin Bacon

    Express Lunch Plate

    Grab the ingredients for this fast, filling lunch from the corner deli. This combo is rich in fiber, protein, and other metabolism boosters. If you prefer a different type of cheese, swap it.
  • Chicken Salad with Olive Vinaigrette
    Photography: Karry Hosford

    Chicken Salad with Olive Vinaigrette

    The flavorful combination of lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil soaks into the couscous to create a Mediterranean-style pasta salad with chicken. Throw in chopped tomatoes for a bit of color.
  • Chicken Saté Wraps
    Becky Luigart-Stayner; Melanie J. Clarke and Celine Chenoweth

    Chicken Saté Wraps

    Give your sandwich a flavorful kick with this spicy and sweet filling. To cut down on prep time, use rotisserie chicken, packaged angel hair slaw, and packaged matchstick-cut carrots.
  • Crunchy Granola with Dried Fruit

    Crunchy Granola with Dried Fruit

    Granola makes the perfect, no-guilt snack food for any time of day. Grab a handful in the morning on the way out the door, throw some in the kids' backpacks for a treat during school, or add a satisfying energy boost to your lunch.
  • Deluxe Roast Beef Sandwich

    Deluxe Roast Beef Sandwich

    Jazz up this classic sandwich with mayo, horseradish, and chili sauce for a creamy spread with a bit of heat.
  • Roasted Chicken and Bow Tie Pasta Salad
    Becky Luigart-Stayner; Lydia DeGaris-Pursell

    Roasted Chicken and Bow Tie Pasta Salad

    Celery and walnuts give added crunch to this dish while red grapes and fruit juice add a fresh, sweet flavor. Prepare this salad the night before to save time packing lunch on a hectic morning.
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