19 Winter Lunch Recipes for Weight Loss
Make a satisfying lunch with these healthy recipes for weight loss. These lunches are low in calories and high in fiber, which is an important nutrient that helps you feel fuller for longer periods of time. Whether it’s Mediterranean Lettuce Wraps or Baked Vegetable Soup, these lunches are delicious, cozy and will help you power through the afternoon.
Veggie & Hummus Sandwich
This mile-high vegetable and hummus sandwich makes the perfect heart-healthy vegetarian lunch to go. Mix it up with different flavors of hummus and different types of vegetables depending on your mood.
Hearty Chickpea & Spinach Stew
This satisfying stew comes together in a snap. Mashed chickpeas add body to the broth, and tomato paste adds a savory note without piling on the sodium. To simplify the prep, look for chopped fresh onion and shredded carrot or a soup starter mix in the produce section.
Canned salmon is a valuable pantry staple and a practical way to include heart-healthy omega-3-rich fish in your diet. Here, we combine it with avocados in an easy no-cook meal.
Mediterranean Lettuce Wraps
A tangy, nutty tahini dressing brings together no-cook ingredients like canned chickpeas and roasted red peppers for these easy meal-prep lettuce wraps. Make these wraps ahead of time for a grab-and-go lunch or dinner. A few wedges of warm pita finish off the meal perfectly.
Crunchy Mexican Salad with Spicy Cilantro Vinaigrette
A spicy cilantro vinaigrette gives this black bean salad Mexican flair. We used the beans for protein, but if you have cooked chicken on hand, you can use that instead. Also, if you have it, finish the salad with a quarter of an avocado for a boost of healthy fats.
Middle Eastern Chicken & Chickpea Stew
This quick, protein-rich chicken stew recipe gets great flavor from cumin, lemon juice and garlic. Make a double batch and freeze it for a quick healthy dinner. Serve the stew with couscous and steamed broccoli.
Chipotle Chicken Quinoa Burrito Bowl
This chipotle-flavored burrito bowl recipe is even better than takeout and just as fast. Loading it with vegetables and using quinoa in place of rice adds nutrition for a healthy dinner.
Baked Vegetable Soup
Originally prepared in the wood-burning hearths of Italian homes, this peasant-style healthy vegetable soup recipe is simple to make in a modern oven. Brimming with artichokes, mushrooms, zucchini and leeks, this easy soup heats up the house as it becomes the perfect warming meal.
Edamame Hummus Wrap
Made with protein-rich edamame instead of chickpeas, this easy hummus recipe is the perfect vegetarian filling for a grab-and-go wrap. Or double the recipe and use the hummus for a healthy snack with cut-up vegetables.
Tuna & White Bean Salad
The time-honored Italian pairing of canned tuna and cannellini beans makes a super-simple, satisfying lunch. Serve over salad greens, on grilled whole-wheat country bread or tucked in a whole-wheat pita pocket.
Italian Vegetable Hoagies
This delightfully easy, and somewhat messy, sandwich packs a punch with sweet balsamic vinegar, artichoke hearts, red onion, provolone cheese and zesty pepperoncini. We love it for dinner as well as lunch. If you're packing the hoagies to take along, keep the ingredients separate and assemble right before eating to avoid soggy bread. Serve with tomato and cucumber salad.
Butternut Squash Soup with Apple Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Layering apple slices into grilled cheese sandwiches adds a little crunch to a favorite soup dipper. And creamy butternut squash soup with ginger, cumin and turmeric is a nice change of pace from grilled cheese's usual tomato soup partner. Serve the duo for a comforting and easy weeknight dinner for the family. The soup keeps well in the fridge, so save leftovers for lunch or dinner later in the week.
Roasted Vegetable & Black Bean Tacos
These hearty vegan tacos are quick and easy to make, perfect for busy weeknights. They are so tasty no one will miss the meat or dairy.
Open-Face Italian Chicken Sandwiches with Avocado Slaw
The quick tomato topping on these hearty and healthy chicken sandwiches will remind you of pizza. The accompanying slaw swaps out mayo for healthier avocado. Cook the chicken breasts on the grill if you prefer (see Tip) and consider making a double batch of the chicken for lunches and dinners later in the week.
Green Goddess Salad with Chicken
In this cucumber, tomato, Swiss and chicken salad recipe, a healthy green goddess dressing is made from avocado, buttermilk and herbs. Any extra dressing is delicious served over grilled chicken or flaky white fish, such as cod or flounder.
Spicy Tuna Wrap
These tuna wraps were inspired by spicy tuna sushi rolls. We love how they taste with peppery watercress, but other greens, such as arugula, romaine, escarole or even radish sprouts, would taste great in the filling. If you want to play on the sushi inspiration, stir some wasabi into the soy sauce for dipping and serve with pickled ginger. Serve with sliced cucumbers and slivered red onions tossed with rice vinegar, a little oil and a pinch of salt.
Spinach & Warm Mushroom Salad
In this hearty mushroom and spinach salad recipe, sturdier “mature” spinach leaves hold up better than baby spinach when tossed with the warm mushroom-and-bacon vinaigrette.
A Mexican-style torta is just like a burrito, except the “wrapper” is a hollowed-out roll instead of a tortilla. Here it's filled with mashed spiced black beans and a quick guacamole. Take this vegetarian version to another level (and add calcium) by melting Monterey Jack cheese onto the bean side of the sandwich. Serve with: Grilled corn on the cob or Spanish rice.
Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili
Make a double batch of this quick vegetarian chili, full of black beans and sweet potatoes, and eat it for lunch the next day or freeze the extras for another night. We love the smoky heat from the ground chipotle, but omit it if you prefer a mild chili. Serve with tortilla chips or cornbread and coleslaw.