It’s a common misconception that when searching for healthy lunch recipes, or just easy and light meals, your options are profoundly limited. Turns out, there are plenty of healthy meals out there that aren’t just salads or blandly seasoned fish with steamed vegetables (though those do work, if that’s what you like!)
“The key to building a healthy lunch is having a balance of protein, healthy fat, and carbohydrate, and there [are] infinite ways to do this,” Marisa Moore, a registered dietitian nutritionist in Atlanta, tells Woman’s Day. “You might enjoy fish tacos with the tortilla, fish, and vegetables, you’re all set in one dish. Or maybe it’s a soup and salad kind of day — both great opportunities to pile in plenty of vegetables.”
In addition to protein, healthy fats, and some carbohydrates, adding whole grains, fruits, and vegetables to all of your meals can give your light, easy lunch even more health benefits, Amy Gorin, MS, RDN, a plant-based registered dietitian and owner of Plant-Based Eats in Stamford, CT, says. “The protein, healthy fat, and fiber from the whole grain and produce help keep you fuller for longer — and this combination of foods also provides important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants,” she tells Woman’s Day. For protein, the dietitian suggests eggs, salmon, and beans, just to name a few. Oats, quinoa, and whole-grain or sprouted-grain bread are great carbohydrate options. And as for fruits and veggies? They all have plenty of health benefits, so take your pick. There are so many healthy lunch ideas, but it all come down to balance. Protein, healthy fats, whole grains, vegetables, and fruits are all you need to make these easy, light lunch recipes.