5 Quick, Nourishing Lunches to Fuel Your Day


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Try to have a balance of carbohydrates, fats and protein to properly uplift your day!

Listen . . . girls got to eat! I don’t know about you, but I tend to go the repetitive route for lunch. It’s easy to get bored with the same salad or a sandwich every single day. When I take the time to meal-prep these quick and delicious lunches, I not only look forward to eating them, I feel energized to take on the rest of my day! 

Nobody wants their lunch to make them feel sluggish or tired. When constructing or meal prepping lunches, I always keep the three macronutrient groups in mind. Try to have a balance of carbohydrates, fats and protein to properly uplift your day! 

Fuel your body with these five quick and nourishing lunches! 

1.  BANZA PROTEIN PASTA SALAD

Packed with veggies, colors, nutrients and protein—and you can customize however you like! I love Banza pasta because it has 8g of fiber and 14g protein per serving so it is super satisfying as a meal. 

Recipe:

  • 1 yellow pepper

  • 1 red pepper

  • 1 orange pepper

  • 1 1/2 cucumbers

  • 2 cups of cherry tomatoes

  • ½ cup of Banza pasta (or any protein chickpea pasta)

  • 2 TBSP of light balsamic dressing (or whatever your favorite is)

  • Optional—add red onions and feta cheese!

Directions:

1. Boil the Banza pasta for 9 minutes. 

2. Chop all the veggies while the pasta boils. 

3. Make sure you rinse the pasta with cold water and strain it! 

4. Add the veggies and pasta together. Add feta cheese and dressing! 

5. Pop it on some arugula or spinach. 

2.   CILANTRO LIME QUINOA CHICKEN BOWL

Better than the Chipotle burrito bowl! Quinoa is a great source of carbohydrates and is high in protein, fiber, and magnesium, phosphorus, and iron! 

Recipe:

  • 8oz of grilled chicken breast or 8oz of tofu or tempeh (plant-based)

  • 1 cup of quinoa (cooked)

  • 1/3 red onion, diced

  • 1 small avocado

  • ½ bell pepper

  • fresh salsa

  • fresh cilantro

  • 1 lime

Directions: 

1. Cook quinoa according to instructions. 

2. In a large bowl, toss together quinoa, lime and salt/pepper to taste. 

3. Divide that between two servings and top with your protein, bell pepper, salsa, onion, avocado and cilantro. Serve hot or cold! 

Yes, it’s that simple and so tasty! Make a double batch if you want to enjoy it throughout the week! 

3.   TRADER JOE’S CHICKEN STIRFRY

Even if you don’t shop at Trader Joe’s you can find these simple ingredients anywhere. I mix cauliflower rice with brown or white rice for a balance of nutrients and carbs. 

Recipe:

  • TJ’s Riced Cauliflower Stir Fry (or other cauliflower rice)

  • ½ cup of brown rice

  • 2 TBSP soy sauce or coconut aminos

  • 4-8oz chicken, tofu or tempeh

  • 1-2 cups stir fry veggies (I get mine from Costco in bulk!)

  • Add broccoli, hemp seeds, Sriracha or shrimp!

Directions:

1.    Add frozen items to the pan first.

2.    Cook everything over medium to high heat.

3.    Season as desired (garlic, salt, pepper, hot sauce, sriracha, coconut aminos, soy sauce). 

4.  CROCKPOT TURKEY CHILI

Recipe:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil

  • 1 yellow onion, chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped

  • 1 pound extra lean ground turkey

  • 4 Tablespoons chili powder

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes or crushed tomatoes

  • 1 can tomato sauce

  • 1 1/4 cups chicken broth

  • 2 (15 oz) cans dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

  • 1 (15 oz) can sweet corn, rinsed and drained

  • For topping: cheese, avocado, tortilla chips, cilantro, sour cream

Directions:

1.    Place oil in a large pot and place over medium high heat. Add in onion, garlic and red pepper and sauté for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently. 

2.    Add in ground turkey and break up the meat, cooking until no longer pink. Next add in chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper and salt; stir for about 20 seconds.

3.    Next add in tomatoes, chicken broth, kidney beans and corn. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30-45 minutes or until chili thickens and flavors come together. Taste and adjust seasonings and salt as necessary. 

4.    Garnish with anything you’d like. Makes 6 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each.

5.   MICHIGAN CHICKEN CHERRY BOWL

Recipe:

  • 1 cup quinoa or brown rice cooked in chicken broth

  • 3 Tbsp dried cherries

  • 4 oz marinated chicken

  • 2 Tbsp pecans or walnuts

  • Sprinkle of slivered almonds

  • Sprinkle of feta or goat cheese

  • Toppings: honeycrisp apple, salad dressing, raspberries, blueberries, blue cheese

Directions:

1.    Add everything to a bowl and serve with dressing on the side so it doesn’t get soggy.

2.    Enjoy!

Which recipe has your taste buds watering?

Image via Heather Ford


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