August offers the best of everything. All the vegetables and fruits you could ever want are in season, just as lunch season heats up. Back to work, back to school — your lunchbox is ready for a fresh makeover, don't you think?
Whether you're getting ready for a busy fall after a laid-back summer, or you have a kid going back to school, we've rounded up 17 fresh, healthy lunch recipes perfect for any backpack or lunchbox. From a mozzacado sandwich to a chilled black bean salad and seasonal spring rolls, brown-bagging it has never tasted so good.
Let's not forget that it is still summer for another month or so. You won't find any warm soup recipes in this roundup. However, there is an abundance of seasonal-focused lunches, including tartines with basil, mozzarella and nectarines, and a succotash salad.
I've broken down lunch items into three categories: salad, sandwiches, and everything in between. A lot of the recipes are vegetarian or vegan, but can be beefed-up (literally) if you so desire.
- Chilled Black Bean, Feta & Cucumber Salad
- Golden Quinoa Salad with Lemon, Dill & Avocado
- Baked Red Lentil Falafel Salad
- Mediterranean Cauliflower Couscous Salad
- Cold Lentil Salad with Cucumbers and Olives
- Succotash Salad
- Cashew Chicken Salad Wraps
- Pita Pockets with Crunchy Romaine, Roasted Beets, Chicken & Manchego Cheese
- Tartines With Mozzarella, Basil, and Nectarines
- Mozzacado Sandwich
- Spiced Lentil, Sweet Potato & Kale Whole Wheat Pockets
Other Lunch Options
- Brown Rice Bowl with Chard & Nutty Tomato Romesco Sauce
- Orzo Salad with Spinach Pesto, Olives & Feta
- Sautéed Zucchini with Chorizo & Lime
- Roasted Scallion & Snap Pea Spring Rolls with Tahini Sauce
- Tofu Chickpea Stir-Fry with Tahini Sauce
- Miso-Roasted Asparagus Soba Noodle Salad
When I take my lunch to work, it's because I've done a couple things: I either make enough food for dinner the night before that I have leftovers for lunch the next day, or I prep things on Sunday night. If you plan a little ahead of time, you'll have something that's most likely more healthy and budget-friendly than the things you end up buying instead.