healthy lunch ideas

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

Do you love packing lunches as much as I do? (I’m kidding, that’s not a real question.)

I love cooking, but prepping lunches? Not one of my favorite things to do. And I get the feeling that those of you who pack lunches day in and day out get sick of it real quick as well. And it’s totally understandable – it takes a ton of planning, prepping and energy to pack lunches every day.

When I think of the goal of this little website of mine, it’s to provide simple, delicious and healthy inspiration to eat well. For kids, for adults and for everyone in between. With that in mind, these healthy lunch ideas are suitable for the entire family, and I kept them as easy as possible.

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

Ideally, each lunch (and meal for that matter!) should consist of a protein, vegetable and whole-grain or starch component. The fruit and treat are optional, but may help you score good lunch cred! Portion size will depend on the size of the human. :)

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Lunch Ideas: Protein | deli meat, cheese cubes, hard boiled eggs, edamame, beans, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, nut or sun butter, grilled or leftover meat, tuna or egg salad, smoothie (frozen in molds), meatballs, frittata, cheese quesadilla, grass-fed hot dogs

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Lunch Ideas: Vegetables | carrot sticks, grape tomatoes, lettuce wraps, cucumber slices, roasted vegetables, red pepper strips, snap peas, coleslaw, sautéed zucchini, steamed broccoli, roasted cauliflower

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Lunch Ideas: Fruits | berries, apple slices, orange segments, grapes, melon chunks, sliced kiwi, mango

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Lunch Ideas: Whole-Grains (or Starch)| crackers, pasta, bread, popcorn, tortillas, pita bread, mini bagel, waffles, pancakes, english muffin, focaccia, cereal, baked oatmeal, cinnamon raisin bread, cubed sweet potato, roasted squash, mashed potatoes, potato pancakes, sweet potato fries

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Lunch Ideas: Treats | fruit leather, whole-grain cookies, mini-muffins, trail mix, dried fruit, granola bars

Want More? I rounded up 225+ lunch box ideas here.

Helpful Products: these products might make packing lunch a little easier and a little more fun! The popsicle molds are great for filling and freezing with healthy smoothies (add some greens!) and the baking cups are helpful for keeping foods separate in bento-box style lunch containers.

Healthy Lunch Ideas | anutritionisteats.com

LunchBots Quad Container | Silicone Popsicle Molds | Silicone Baking Cups | Laptop Lunches Bento Buddies *affiliate links

What do YOU pack for lunch?

 

strawberries & cream oatmeal smoothie

In the name of all things “back to school,” I’m deeming this week breakfast week!

Strawberries & Cream Oatmeal Smoothie | A Nutritionist Eats

It’s starting out on a really good note. Yup. Breakfast is sounding realllllllly good.

And lucky for us all, it also tastes realllllllly good. And it’s a healthy, well-balanced way to start your day.

Strawberry & Cream Oatmeal Smoothie | A Nutritionist Eats

We’re talking a smoothie made with oats + milk + cottage cheese + frozen strawberries + a touch of honey. No fancy ingredients, just simple foods you have at home blended together. Have you ever tried oats in a smoothie? It may sound a little odd at first, but when they’re blended, they’re hardly noticeable. They provide a dose of whole grains, protein and fiber. I think they really take the smoothie from being part of a meal, to making it the entire meal.

This smoothie is creamy, its a touch sweet, and its really filling thanks to the 19 grams of protein (without any protein powder!) and 6 grams of fiber. (If you use cows milk, you’ll have even more protein!)

Strawberry & Cream Oatmeal Smoothie | A Nutritionist Eats

Quick nutrition lesson: protein is often lacking at morning meals, when cereal and breads are the norm but it’s important to make sure that each meal contains protein to prevent blood sugar crashes and mindless snacking later in the day. More on the why + protein-rich breakfast inspiration here:

Breakfast can be the most important – and tastiest – meal of the day.

Strawberries & Cream Oatmeal Smoothie
 
Author:
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • ½ cup oats
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup cottage cheese
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla
Instructions
  1. Place the oats and milk in blender.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 311 Fat: 5 grams Carbohydrates: 45 grams Sugar: 30 grams Fiber: 6 grams Protein: 19 grams

 

daily eats: 8.6.14

It cannot be August. Can it?! Part of me is utterly terrified that we still haven’t even gone to the beach this summer and part of me is really excited because it means that my mom comes out in a few weeks! I can’t wait!

workout: I woke up late (always a great way to start the day, huh?) and so instead of going for a walk, I did 20 minutes of Fitnet cardio workouts. Better than nothing! I also went for two 15-minute walks throughout the day so I managed to hit my nike fuel goal for the day!

beverage: coffee + 1/2 & 1/2, standard!

breakfast: 1 cup strawberries + 1 cup power o’s + 1 Tbsp chia seeds + 1 cup 2% milk. I was really excited to find the power o’s cereal the other day. They are made with beans and brown rice and have 6 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber per serving. (The plain version of the cereal definitely needs some sort of added sweetness – the fresh strawberries were a perfect addition for me but I’m not sure I could eat it on its own.)

Daily Eats | A Nutritionist Eats

snack: I don’t normally snack in the morning, but if I’ve had cereal, it’s kind of guaranteed. I found this Vega bar in my drawer and it was SO good. It reminded me a bit of kind bars and macaroons. YUM.

Daily Eats | A Nutritionist Eats

yoga: Yoga Wednesday at work! Love it.

lunch: romaine + kale + cucumber + pepper + olive salad + dressing with a turkey burger + slice of cheese + 1/2 of an avocado

Daily Eats | A Nutritionist Eats

I absolutely could not pass these up. I kept trying to, but they are one of my favorite candies and they were staring me in the face. They were SO good. :)

Daily Eats | A Nutritionist Eats

dinner: we’re currently housesitting (yes, again!) and my cousin happens to get blue apron, so we lucked out and got their week of meals! It was a treat because we love blue apron but it’s too expensive to get it on a weekly basis. Hanger Steaks & Roasted Potatoes with Sautéed Long Beans & Tomato was on the menu last night. It was, as always, delicious!

Daily Eats | A Nutritionist Eats

other random bites: a few almonds before dinner, a few bites of corn from Richie at dinner and a few bites of gelato after dinner. :)

approximate nutrition stats: 2,048 calories, 105 grams fat (44%), 187 grams carbohydrates (35%), 31 grams fiber, 74 grams sugar, 107 grams protein (20%)

thoughts: I definitely had a sweet tooth today! I also felt kind of snacky, but that is pretty normal when I have cereal for breakfast.

no more eggs

So I have some depressing news. I can’t eat eggs anymore.

The depressing part is that this isn’t by choice. The non-depressing part is that, in the grand scheme of life….wait, life without eggs?!

Life without eggs... OMG! | A Nutritionist Eats

 

And honestly, it hasn’t even really sunk in yet. I’ve been finding good alternatives (like gelato instead of ice cream and just mayo instead of mayonnaise) but I do feel a twinge of jealousy when I see delicious-looking brunch recipes or a poached egg.

What happened? For the last 5ish (?!) years, I’ve had on and off-stomach issues. I’d take enzymes, sip kombucha, swallow peppermint pills (in addition to my probiotics) and contemplate brown rice-only diets and then it would go away and I’d forget about it. This past winter, after some really bad days, I decided to finally do something about it. I went to the doctor. No answer. I went to the Gastroenterologist and left with a prescription and an endoscopy appointment. (No answer.)

Right before my scheduled endoscopy, I had an interesting conversation with a friend of mine who had similar issues. She took some food intolerance tests and urged me to do the same. And after thinking about it for a little while, I decided that I wanted to pursue a more holistic route. I wasn’t ok with automatic pills and procedures that I had a feeling wouldn’t lead to any answers. I figured my issues stemmed from food, but I was never able to pinpoint it to a certain food.

So I took some tests (blood and others!) and my results were…surprising. No reactions to the common suspects like dairy, soy or gluten. I had really high responses to eggs (both yolk and whites) and green beans.

Life without eggs... OMG! | A Nutritionist Eats

OH! You mean the foods I eat ALL THE TIME!? I eat (ate) a ton of eggs and definitely had green beans on a weekly basis. I was a little shocked, but it was the beginning of an answer so I was ready to explore further. Next, I cut out eggs and green beans for two weeks, which actually took four weeks because I kept accidentally eating foods that contain eggs! It made me realize just how many eggs (and products containing eggs) I was eating – A LOT! And if you want to see an example of that, check out all of the posts that mention eggs.

Then, after that egg-free period, I re-introduced them to see what happened. After a glorious day of eating breakfast at eggslut, deviled eggs, fresh egg pasta AND a cupcake…I got a rash all over my back and chest. And now, whenever I eat eggs (once it even happened after a mayo-based salad!), I get a rash, almost immediately. I haven’t tried green beans yet (to see if I have a reaction), but for now, I’m ok not having them.

And that’s how I determined I can’t eat eggs. I’ll still eat a few bites every now and then because I can deal with the rash, but I know what happens if I have too many of them and I definitely don’t want to go back to that.

Favorite Egg Recipes | A Nutritionist Eats

Because I like to torture myself… my favorite egg recipes (L to R): Breakfast Tacos with Chipotle Sour Cream | Anthony Bourdain’s Egg Scramble | Spicy Egg Scramble

Why tell you? Because mainly, I thought you might find it interesting! But also, I want to recommend the Naturopathic route if you’ve ever considered it. I have to pay for the visits and tests out of pocket (which is so frustrating because I know seeing her cost SO much less than all of the tests I would have taken going the traditional route) but she is so thorough, thoughtful and the Naturopathic route just makes sense to me. (More info on Naturopathic Medicine)

Any egg alternatives I should know about? :)