Welcome to Flawed yet Functional! My diet is currently the Autoimmune Protocol plus a few reintroductions. I’ve been working to heal my gut (and manage my Type 1 Diabetes) through this diet for almost 150 days, so I know a thing or two about AIP friendly recipes! Continuing on with my top 5 Autoimmune Protocol recipes mini-series, today I’m sharing my top 5 AIP lunch recipes. (Check out my top 5 AIP breakfasts, dinners, and one-pan meals!) If you want to dip your toes into a diet change, start with these tried and true recipes!
Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links which just means if you purchase from the links provided, I may get a small commission at no additional cost to you! At Flawed yet Functional, I only reference products that have real value that I actually use.
Truthfully, most of our lunches are leftovers from the night before, but I always have ingredients on hand for a quick, easy, freshly-made lunch just in case the leftovers run out. Most of the meats used in these meals are ones that have a long shelf life: kielbasa (kept in the freezer), salami (kept in the pantry or fridge), canned salmon (kept in the pantry). Since these are my second-string lunch options, I don’t buy the meat often. They are more of a “just-in-case” lunch option hence the need for a long shelf-life. Let’s check out these quick, easy, and healthy recipes!
Broccoli “Cheese” Soup
Who doesn’t love broccoli cheese soup? This soup is dairy-free, believe it or not. The cheese-y flavor comes from nutritional yeast. Likely, you will need to plan ahead for this meal as nutritional yeast is probably not in your regular pantry stocking! I love the rich flavor the soup contains while not coming off heavy. Pair it with fresh fruit and a side salad or just eat it by itself!
Cooking Tip: This soup is RICH, so plan on small servings!
Kielbasa and Roasted Veggies
Take note that the recipe I linked to is made with Bratwurst which is not AIP compliant (contains ground mustard and mace). If you’d like to make this recipe, change the meat to Kielbasa which contains only spices that are AIP approved (black pepper, marjoram, and garlic). However, if purchasing from the store, always read the labels! I recently found hot dogs and brats with dairy in them!
What I love about this recipe is it tastes like you put a lot of effort into the meal, but really, you just chopped a couple of veggies and tossed them in the oven. Roasting brings out the best in vegetables, I recommend you roast veggies any time you can!
Cooking Tip: Most kielbasa purchased from the store should be smoked and fully cooked. If it isn’t, the meat might be a little pale even with fully cooked a 165°. Turn on the broiler for a few minutes or put the kielbasa in a cast iron pan to add some color to the sausages. This is purely for aesthetics as your instant-read thermometer is the final judge of doneness!
Mediterranean Snack Lunch
While I don’t want to push eating lunch meat all the time, there is a time and a place for quick protein. Salami (original, not spicy as that has nightshades) is my first choice when I’m putting together a “snack-y” AIP lunch either at home or on the go. My favorite flavor combination is salami, Kalamata olives, pickles, and dates. I serve these with fresh fruit and something crunchy like pork rinds.
Canned salmon or tuna is a pantry item I always have on hand for a quick lunch or dinner. These salmon patties are unique in that they don’t use eggs. Eggless salmon or tuna patties are hard to come by! They are more fragile than usual salmon patties, but the flavor is good so I can handle a bit of crumbliness.
AIP Chicken Salad
Chicken salad that is creamy and dairy-free?!? Does it exist?? It sure does, and this version rocks! The coconut milk is a great creamy base and the flavor is jazzed up by the addition of lemon zest and lemon juice. The citrus helps cut the coconut flavor and give the dish the tang you would expect from traditional yogurt or sour cream-based chicken salad. This recipe is excellent! Try it today!
What’s the Next Step After Healthy Lunches?
These five AIP lunch recipes will help you get rolling with eating good, nourishing food in the middle of the day. Odds are, if you are at the point of changing your lunches then you are well on your way to eating good food every day. But if you are just starting out, then I’ve got something to give you the training and confidence you need to plan and execute healthy meals every day. Check out the Weekly Meal Plan Guide for guidance in planning nourishing meals day in and day out, for life!
The Weekly Meal Plan Guide is a 22-page workbook that walks you through the meal planning process step by step. As you work through your week-long menu plan, a sample menu plan is created alongside yours. When you finish the workbook, you’ll have 2 complete menu plans with grocery lists!
What’s even better is this workbook is filled with reusable worksheets so that you can repeat this menu planning process over and over! Grab your copy today!
Eating nutritious, easy lunches while on the Autoimmune Protocol IS possible. Plan on leftovers from dinners as much as you can then use these simple top 5 AIP lunch recipes to help round out your lunch menu plan!
What is your ideal lunch? Do you like to cook at lunchtime or is the microwave your best friend for this meal?
Check out the rest of this mini-series!