This post is sponsored by Weight Watchers
Are you so busy sending your kids to school with healthy snacks that you often forget about your own? Are you tired of having the same old lunches? Are your meals quick but lacking in nutrition? Or maybe you just head to a drive-thru waaay too many times a week for a fast snack? If you answered yes to any of these questions, I have a few choices that will help you! You don’t need to make a fancy lunch or stick to a ridiculously strict diet. This post is simply about providing you with quick and healthy lunch options that will help fuel you for the rest of the day. Also, this isn’t limited to mums, it’s for everyone that needs a few lunch alternatives to fit into their busy lives! Continue reading for my 7 Quick and Healthy Lunch Ideas For Busy People.
Planning lunches will also help the budget, preventing you from reaching for something unhealthy or purchasing expensive takeaway. If you’re struggling with time to make lunches, here are a few tips:
- Plan what you want to have for lunch while doing your weekly meal plan. You will have all ingredients in the fridge or pantry ready to go.
- Pack your lunch the night before or prepare food on the weekend.
- When cooking dinner, make extra to have for lunch the next day.
- Make friends with your freezer. Particular foods can be frozen such as bread, rice, scrolls, quiche, etc. You can always have something on hand.
- Save time by cutting up your salad when preparing the meal the night before. i.e. capsicum and onion for your pasta dish – cut up extra and pop into a bowl ready for your fresh salad for lunch the next day.
- Use the microwave as it’s much easier to use to reheat rather than the oven or stove top.
- Keep a stock of long life ingredients in your pantry. i.e rice, tuna, crackers, etc. as these can be made into a number of different lunch ideas.
I have shared some quick and healthy lunch ideas that you can make at home, i.e. salads that can be tossed together, what to add to crackers and a review of the new Weight Watchers frozen meals.
- Mason Jar Salad – This idea is convenient, as it can be made a few days ahead and the different salad ideas are endless. It’s as simple as creating layers of fresh salad ingredients into a mason jar and sealing it tight. Read more here.
- Rice and Tuna– Cook up extra brown rice the night before and add any protein or vegetables you have in the fridge. A tasty combination: feta, spring onions, celery, capsicum, cherry tomato and any other vegetables with smoked salmon, tuna or grilled chicken.
- Yoghurt and Fruit Salad– Again, just using whatever you can find in the fridge.
2. FROZEN MEALS
Did you know that Weight Watchers has a frozen meal range? I didn’t. Strangely, until now I’ve never really considered frozen meals for lunch, I’ve always visualised them for dinner. But of course, I can see how they are convenient and a great way for busy people to have something quick and tasty during the middle of the day to help them continue through a hectic afternoon. Their Light Menu range is a perfect portion for lunch.
The Weight Watchers frozen meals can be easily found in the frozen section at the grocery store, offering some modern Classic, Light and Gourmet menu ideas with a great combination of ingredients, flavour and portion.
For more information on the Weight Watchers frozen meal range, visit: www.wowfrozenmeals.com.au.
Classic Menu – Beef Cannelloni – Fresh pasta filled with New Zealand beef, simmered with tomato, onion, carrots, red wine & garlic. Topped with a Napoli sauce & finished with parmesan cheese.
My review: This pack included 2 large beef filled cannelloni tubes, with pasta sauce. There was enough sauce to go with the cannelloni. It was tasty, filling and made for a nice, quick and hot lunch.
Light Menu – Honey Soy Noodles – Noodles in a honey, soy and ginger sauce with edamame soybeans, capsicum, carrots, baby corn and shiitake mushrooms.
My review: Initially when I cooked this up I didn’t think it was going to be enough. I cooked this up for my hubby’s lunch to see if it would be enough for him. He said “it was flavoursome, surprisingly filling and I didn’t feel the need to eat anything extra with it.”
Gourmet Menu – Moroccan Chicken & Pearl CousCous – Slices of marinated chicken breast in a rich Moroccan-inspired sauce. Served with pearl couscous, chickpeas, pumpkin, red capsicum & spinach.
My review: First impressions mean a lot and when I plated this up I couldn’t wait to try it. It looked and smelt delicious and didn’t disappoint. It was very tasty and had a good balance of chicken pieces and pearl couscous.
Toast isn’t just for breakfast. In fact, I have it often for lunch and dinner. I’m a fan of a cheesy toasty on those cold winter days. I also like to put a few fillings on top of a piece of bread and put it under the grill for a couple of minutes. Filling ideas:
- Poached eggs on toast, with spinach and avocado
- Capsicum, salami, cheese, garlic flakes and oregano
- Avocado, tomato, mozzarella, basil and balsamic glaze
- Ham, cheese and tomato
- Tuna, mayonnaise, cheese and onion
- BBQ chicken, pesto, spinach and Swiss cheese
image credit, two peas and their pod
This is a great alternative to using bread, I like to use crisp breads and rice cakes. It’s just like an open sandwich, only crunchy!! Topping ideas:
- Cheese and tomato
- Avocado, tomato and turkey
- Peanut butter and banana
- Cream cheese, smoked salmon and red onion
- Nut butter and apple
- Cottage cheese, radish and cucumber
- Boiled egg and mayo
- Tuna and avocado
- Goat’s cheese, walnuts, beetroot and rocket
image credit, food to love
5. LEFT OVERS
- Make Extra– Double the meal you are making so you can split what the family doesn’t eat into individual serves and have it on hand for lunches throughout the week or freeze it.
- Don’t Throw Out Anything– Everything can be made into something. Extra rice can be used for a salad, extra bolognese can make a tasty toastie, veggies can be made into frittata bites.
A healthy smoothie is a great option for when you’re in a hurry. The best part about having a smoothie is that you can have it on-the-go. Add some protein powder, banana, berries, cacao, spinach, etc. You can also choose to mix it with coconut water, milk, soy milk, almond milk or plain water. There are so many different variations you can create. If you’re feeling a bit more on the hungrier side, make your smoothie a tad thicker and put it in a bowl with granola and muesli on top.
7. SCRAMBLED EGGS
Try making scrambled eggs as they are fuss-free compared to an omelette and you don’t need to make it look perfect or add any other ingredients… simply pour whisked egg over any left over vegetables or meat you have in the fridge. Cook in pan for a couple of minutes and you have a meal. You can put it on top of a piece of toast.
- Mashed chickpeas, onion, garlic, capsicum
- Bacon, red onion, capsicum, cheese, zucchini
- Tomato, shallots, onion with avocado, to serve
- Corn, shallots, capsicum, shredded chicken, mushrooms and feta to serve
- Black beans, chilli, coriander and tomatoes
- Zucchini, tomato, red onion, spinach, feta
image credit, martha stewart
I hope this has helped you to create some quick and healthy lunch ideas for you over the coming weeks!
What are some of your favourite lunch ideas?
This post is run in accordance with my disclosure policy.