DISCLOSURE: I have partnered with STOUFFER’S® Fit Kitchen. I have received compensation and product for my participation, but my opinions are my own.
While a lot of the conversation about smart eating is centered around planning for dinner, what about lunch?
Breakfast gets all the love for being the most important meal of the day. Everyone preaches the importance of planning ahead for dinner and eating together as a family. But lunch is often left up in the air, which then means fast food, vending machines … or nothing.
But when we think about the middle of the day, we need energy. Energy to work. Energy to be mom. To be dad. To just be human. So the question is, what are some quick, easy options that can give us what we need in the middle of the day to have the energy we need to perform?
Here are 5 simple, practical lunches for the busy (and who isn’t) person looking to have more energy and maximize their day.
1. Homemade “Sushi” Now, I know I said “easy” and you’re clearly thinking making sushi is not easy. You’re right. It’s not. Not that I would know, but I imagine. Here’s what is easy and one we make regularly for ourselves and our kids. Grab a sprouted grain tortilla, spread a thin layer of nut butter and place a whole, peeled banana on one side. Roll up the banana in the tortilla and slice, like sushi. Quick, easy and portable. Enjoy with a Greek yogurt or vegetables.
2. Stouffer’s Fit Kitchen Bourbon Steak. Bourbon. Steak. Do you need to know anything else? OK, fine. How about chipotle mashed potatoes, broccoli and red peppers. Yes, that’s all in one meal. This new line of frozen entrees is perfect for the busy person. With 27 grams of protein, great flavor and just a few minutes in the microwave, this is a no brainer. It’s convenient and full of the nutrition we need to meet the demands of the day. Add in a piece of fruit and you have a great complement to a quality meal.
3. Greek Yogurt with Almonds. Grab a yogurt, add in a handful of almonds and a piece of fruit. Maybe not a “traditional” lunch, but when you add up the nutrition – approximately 15 grams of protein in the yogurt, another 5 or so from the almonds and the loads of vitamins, minerals and fiber in the fruit, it fits the bill.
4. Leftovers. Cook once, eat twice. Every night we cook, we make sure to double or even triple a recipe. This makes lunch the next day a cinch. Then all you need is a microwave or maybe it’s just as good cold. It doesn’t take any added effort to increase portions; just be sure to put that extra aside versus serving it family style to avoid overeating.
5. Hummus Wrap. Hummus offers a nice combination of quality fiber, healthy fats and some protein. Top a sprouted grain wrap with your favorite hummus, add in a handful of spinach or baby kale, sliced avocado and top with a bit of cheddar cheese. If you want some added protein, add some canned salmon, tuna or, a personal favorite, sardines.
These five ideas are all simple and provide quality nutrition for that middle of the day challenge. Sure, breakfast and dinner are both important. It’s important to not overlook the rest of the day though as well. Whether at the office, home or simply running errands – they all take energy and focus – and proper fuel will help you do just that.
Free Recipe Book:10 Crazy Fast 'N Healthy Weeknight Meals