22 Easy Diabetes-Friendly Lunches to Make This Week
Enjoy something delicious with these simple lunch ideas. Choose a veggie-packed sandwich for something light and fresh or a warm grain bowl on days when you need something a little more comforting—no matter what you pick, you'll have a winner on your hands. Plus, a focus on complex carbs, like whole grains, and lower levels of saturated fat and sodium make these healthy meals a great fit for a diabetes-friendly eating pattern. Recipes like our Open-Face Goat Cheese Sandwich with Tomato & Avocado Salad and Big Beautiful Summer Salad require just 20 minutes of active time in the kitchen, so you can get right back into the swing of your day.
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.
Salmon Rice Bowl
Inspired by the viral TikTok trend, this tasty bowl makes for a satisfying lunch or dinner. With a handful of healthy ingredients, like instant brown rice, heart-healthy salmon and lots of crunchy veggies, you'll have a filling and flavorful meal in just 25 minutes. Looking to cut down on carbs? Try swapping in riced cauliflower in place of the brown rice.
Open-Face Goat Cheese Sandwich with Tomato & Avocado Salad
This simple lunch comes together in just 10 minutes, making it a great option for busy days.
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.
Winter Greens Bowl
This one-pan meal packs in lots of plant-based protein and flavor thanks to beans and quinoa, while a creamy lemon-garlic dressing completes the dish.
Big Beautiful Summer Salad
This gorgeous and healthy summer vegetable salad is loaded with pretty produce, including golden beets, avocado, corn, microgreens and radishes. Chickpeas and edamame add substance, and an herb-filled buttermilk-avocado dressing makes this salad really special. Serve it on its own for a light vegetarian meal or add grilled chicken for an easy weeknight dinner.
Thai-Style Chopped Salad with Sriracha Tofu
Prep four days' worth of high-protein vegan lunches using just four easy ingredients from your local specialty grocery store, including a veggie-heavy salad mix as a base. Because this salad mix is hearty, you can dress these bowls up to 24 hours before serving to allow the flavors in this healthy chopped salad to marry. If you can't find a hearty mix, go with broccoli slaw or shredded Brussels sprouts.
Egg Salad English-Muffin Sandwich
When you boil eggs ahead of time, it's easy to create a lickety-split and delightful lunchtime egg salad. And using the flavorful leafy carrot tops in it is like getting herbs for free.
Green Goddess Salad with Chickpeas
In this cucumber, tomato, Swiss cheese and chickpea salad recipe, a healthy green goddess dressing is made from avocado, buttermilk and herbs. The extra dressing is delicious served with grilled vegetables.
Chipotle-Lime Cauliflower Taco Bowls
A bold, smoky marinade elevates roasted cauliflower in this meal-prep version of our popular Chipotle-Lime Cauliflower Tacos (see Associated Recipes). To cut down on prep time, look for precut cauliflower in the produce department. You can also save time by using microwaveable quinoa pouches (you'll need one 8-ounce pouch for this recipe) instead of cooking quinoa.
Mason Jar Power Salad with Chickpeas & Tuna
This power salad will keep you fueled for hours, thanks to 26 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber. Tossing the dressing and kale, and then letting it stand in the jar, softens it enough so you don't need to massage or cook it to make it tender.
Chopped Veggie Grain Bowls with Turmeric Dressing
In about 10 minutes, you can prep a week's worth of lunches using 4 simple ingredients from your local specialty grocery store. To minimize prep, we're taking advantage of prechopped fresh veggie mix and frozen quinoa (which heats in the microwave in under 5 minutes). These crunchy chopped salad bowls are high in fiber but lower in calories, making them perfect for those following a reduced-calorie diet.
Vegan Superfood Grain Bowls
This nutrient-packed grain bowl recipe comes together in 15 minutes with the help of a few convenience-food shortcuts like prewashed baby kale, microwavable quinoa and precooked beets. Pack these ahead to keep on hand for easy meal-prep lunches or dinners on busy nights.
Lemon-Roasted Vegetable Hummus Bowls
Brimming with colorful roasted vegetables, these plant-based meal-prep lunch bowls are high in fiber to keep you full through the afternoon. The easy roasted veggies are based on a popular recipe from our sister magazine (see Associated Recipes). Feel free to use your favorite store-bought hummus to cut down on prep time, or make a batch of your own (see Tip). You can also sub in an 8-ounce microwaveable quinoa pouch to minimize cooking.
Avocado, Tomato & Chicken Sandwich
In this healthy chicken sandwich recipe, the avocado is mashed to create a healthy creamy spread.
Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad
This scrumptious and healthy salad combines elements of Caesar salad, pasta salad and chicken salad for an easy weeknight dinner that comes together in less than 30 minutes (and most of the prep can be done ahead). Use your blender to whip together the tangy buttermilk-based dressing, which would also be great on a salmon or chickpea salad.
Stuffed Potatoes with Salsa & Beans
Taco night meets baked potato night with this simple recipe for loaded baked potatoes with salsa, beans and avocado. This easy, healthy family dinner comes together with just 10 minutes of active time, so you can make it on even the busiest of weeknights. This recipe is just as delicious with sweet potatoes in place of russets.
Chickpea & Roasted Red Pepper Lettuce Wraps with Tahini Dressing
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.
Lemon Shrimp & Orzo Salad
Consider making a double batch of this easy pasta salad--it's delicious the next day. The orzo will absorb the dressing as it sits, so add a little more olive oil and lemon juice if you'd like.
Mediterranean Pasta Salad
You might not think to use hummus as a pasta sauce, but the creamy dip makes the perfect backdrop to the bold flavors of this healthy Mediterranean-inspired pasta salad.
Farro Salad with Arugula, Artichokes & Pistachios
Precooked farro makes this dish come together in no time. And you can make it in the same bowl you serve it in, minimizing cleanup!
Southwest Black-Bean Pasta Salad Bowls
Meal-prep a week's worth of delicious and satisfying high-fiber lunches with just 5 simple ingredients and 20 minutes. In this Southwestern-style pasta salad, we're using pasta made with black beans to bump up the fiber to an impressive 14 grams per serving. Paired with seasoned chicken strips and a flavorful corn salad--shortcut ingredients you can often find at your local specialty grocery store--this meal-prep lunch is one you'll get excited for.