Welcome to Flawed yet Functional where we talk about how to create and live the best life through healthy food, habits, and hobbies. I’ve been on a journey to find my best health after being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes as a 33 year old. Today, let’s chat about lunch. This meal is often neglected or relegated to a protein bar in the car between appointments. Lunch can be amazing and nutritious! Check out these easy Paleo lunches for batch cooking so you can eat a healthy lunch every day!
Inside: Grab a pre-made grocery list to make your lunches a breeze this week!
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Lunches need to be quick whether you work at an office, drive in the car all day, or stay home with the kiddos. Rarely does anyone have time to cook lunch. So why do I have 5 recipes below that require cooking?!
Think of this list as intentional leftovers, 5 ideas for batch cooking lunch for a week. Whip up a batch (or two depending on how many people will be eating this for lunch) of one of these recipes on Sunday afternoon. Once it has cooled, separate it into 5 single serving dishes and pop them in the fridge.
Making your lunch Monday morning will be so much easier with the main course packaged and ready to go. Toss a piece of fruit and some raw veggies in your lunch bag, and you’re ready to go!
What should you make this week? Let’s take a look at some winners!
Make sure to read to the end to grab a pre-made grocery list to help you get started!
A Paleo spin on the quintessential chicken salad! This cold salad can be eaten on crackers, scooped up with carrot or celery sticks, or just eaten plain with a spoon! It’s light and creamy making it the perfect lunch that won’t leave you in a food coma for the afternoon.
Lunch packing tip: Pack Dairy Free Paleo Chicken Salad in a separate container (these are great!) so it doesn’t get other items soggy. Serve with grain-free crackers, fresh veggies (cucumbers, carrots, or celery are my favs), and some berries for a light yet filling meal.
Hearty, warm, and comforting this soup is the perfect chilly weather lunch! It reheats beautifully, so don’t worry about the microwave ruining it. Just warm for 20-30 seconds at a time then stir. Repeat until your level of warmth is reached. While maybe not the best summer recipe, if you work in an air conditioned office, it will be fine!
Lunch packing tip: Don’t have access to a microwave at work? No worries! Fill a thermos (I recommend this one. I’ve had it for over 8 years and it still works great!) with very hot water for 3-5 minutes. Pour the water out and pour in already hot soup. Screw the lid on right away, and your soup will stay hot for hours!
Ok, hear me out on this one. There are two ways to enjoy burgers for lunch. First, cook them fresh if you are home for lunch. Use a cast iron pan and very high heat to sear a perfect burger on the stove in 6 minutes. The balsamic mushroom take about 10 minutes in another pan on the stove. Start the mushrooms then shape and cook your burgers and they should finish about the same time.
Need to pack this one to-go? Here’s the key: cook the burger only to 125° internal temperature (it will rise to 130°-135° while resting which is medium-rare), then only reheat in the microwave until the chill is gone. As long as you don’t overheat the burger, it will still taste good reheated!
Lunch packing tip: Place burger in a separate dish from the rest of your lunch topped with the mushrooms. Warm the burger and mushrooms together in the microwave, be careful not to overdo the heat!
This quick summer salad is usually eaten warm, but if you aren’t home for lunch, it is delicious cold or warmed in the microwave. If I plan to eat reheated, I use a firmer lettuce like Romaine and decrease the wilt time as it will wilt more when reheated. Wilted bacon salad is a light yet filling salad for any day!
Lunch packing tip: This salad can let off a bit of liquid, so pack it separate from other food items. Toss in an apple or a cup of berries for a complete lunch. If you like more protein in your lunch, pair this salad with a burger from above!
I had to throw in this other variation on chicken salad so you see the versatility in chicken salad. Throw in any vegetable you’ve got lying around: broccoli, carrots, celery, even cucumbers or bell peppers! Mix it up with onions, seasoning, and dairy-free yogurt and you’ve got a tasty, veggie-filled lunch!
Lunch packing tip: Use a separate container for the chicken salad so the liquid doesn’t ruin anything then pair the salad with your favorite way to scoop: grain-free crackers, fresh veggie sticks, or just a spoon!
What’s the next step? Buying the groceries and making these delicious meals! Sign up below to have a grocery list for these 5 Paleo lunches sent to your inbox!
A Paleo lunch might take a bit more planning and effort, but it is doable and eating a healthy, nutritious lunch will help you meet your health goals! Next time you are looking for a healthy option for lunch, give one of these easy ideas a try!