You know that totally victorious feeling that comes from packing a lunch you actually look forward to eating, not just once, but a few times a week? Of course you do. Well, making it happen regularly can be easier than you think. The secret to success lies in your Sunday meal prep. From a versatile batch of roasted veggies to protein-packed staples like hard-boiled eggs, beans, and more, these are the 10 things to tackle on Sunday for better lunches all week long.
No matter how you make them, beans are one of the smartest items to include in your Sunday meal prep routine. They can take a while to cook, but it's mostly hands off, leaving ample time to tackle the rest of your prep. Not only are beans inexpensive, but they're also packed with protein to give salads, grain bowls, soups, and wraps a boost.
Other Methods to Cook Beans
Bake a batch of tofu over the weekend and make a more filling salad all week long. These cubes will lose their crunch after a day or so, but they're definitely no less satisfying.
Having some extra roasted vegetables in the fridge is always a good idea. They're the versatile ingredient that give standard salads and wraps an extra hit of veggies. Switch up what your prepare each week to beat the boredom.
Make a pot of your favorite grains on Sunday, then turn them into a grain bowl or use them to bulk up salads, wraps, and soup throughout the week.
Other Grains to Add to Sunday Meal Prep
Not only will poached eggs instantly make even the most basic lunches feel fancy (and more filling!), but they also can be made up to a couple days in advance. Make a few now, then use them to top your salad, a pile of roasted veggies, soup, or a grain bowl at lunchtime.
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Crispy, crunchy croutons are the ultra-satisfying add-in that makes lunch salad infinitely more exciting. This quick stovetop method cooks up with little effort.
Instead of making a fresh batch of vinaigrette every day to go with your lunch salad, make one big batch for the week. My favorite low-effort, yet effective, way to keep salads from feeling stale is by making a new dressing each week. Maybe one week it's balsamic vinaigrette, the next week it's Caesar dressing, and then maybe a fish sauce vinaigrette.
Try a Variation
Whether you prefer the stovetop method, or find the ultra-creamy eggs from the Instant Pot totally irresistible, this is a valuable item to add to your Sunday meal prep routine. Make a big batch now, then use them throughout the week for protein-packed salads, grain bowls, and sandwiches. Hard-boiled eggs last up to a week in the fridge.
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Just like the instant cup of noodles you loved as a kid, this version does not disappoint. It's designed to be made in advance, and is easy to transport to work.
These pitas are a delicious example of the rewards that come with big-batch cooking. Since you're already in the kitchen, why make just one day's worth of lunch when you can make enough for a week or two? Pull these protein-packed pitas together during your meal prep, then stash them in the freezer for lunch any time.