4 Light and Easy Lunches That Will Hold You Over

Looking for lunch ideas that will fill you up without filling you out? Try these light and easy fiber and protein-rich lunches that will keep you feeling satisfied without blowing your calorie budget.

July 24, 2015
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Looking for lunch ideas that will fill you up without filling you out? Try these light and easy fiber and protein-rich lunches that will keep you feeling satisfied without blowing your calorie budget.

Craving a gooey, cheesy, sandwich? No need to deprive yourself with this trimmed-down version of a classic Monte Cristo.

A Better Monte Cristo Sandwich

Reduced-fat swiss cheese, thinly sliced turkey or chicken breast (your choice), whole-wheat bread and trimmings are dipped in a savory egg batter and pan-fried for a delicious lunch that’s ready in only 15 minutes. This one is a real crowd-pleaser (kids love it, too) with a whopping 53 grams of protein, healthy fats, and 6 grams of fiber.

This hot sandwich only takes a couple more minutes to prepare than your every day cold sandwich, but man is it worth it! Heat in a nonstick skillet for about two and a half minutes per side and voila … melted cheese goodness that’s good for you, too.

The baby spinach is a good source of vitamins A, C, and folate, as well as minerals such as manganese, zinc, and iron. It is also a good source of fiber and even contributes a small amount of protein to the diet. Add as many extra leafy greens as you like for next-to-zero calories and even more filling fiber.

Running on empty? No problem! Power up with this salad featuring black beans as the star, whole kernel corn, and a tasty homemade dressing you can whip up in minutes.

Black-Bean Salad

It is often thought that vegetarians have a difficult time meeting their daily protein requirements, but consuming vegetables with protein (like beans) make it easy to stay on track. One half cup of black beans gives you 8 grams of protein and fiber with only 114 calories per serving.

Since this salad uses canned beans and corn, its a snap to put together. Combine all ingredients together in a big bowl, then let the marinade work its magic for about half an hour before you dig in.

Studies show that regular bean consumption is associated with lower body weight and smaller waist circumference. Frequently eating beans may also reduce your risk for heart disease.

Heart-healthy soy foods like tofu help decrease your risk of heart disease by lowering LDL cholesterol. Try this Peanut Tofu wrap made with store-bought Thai peanut sauce for a speedy, tasty lunch.  Opt for low-sodium sauce if you can find it.

Peanut Tofu Wrap

Tofu is a healthy protein source that contains all of the essential amino acids. Wraps are a great way to package a protein and veggie-packed lunch with fewer carbs than a traditional sandwich.

Spread a little peanut sauce on the tortilla, add tofu and veggies, roll up and you’re done! If making this ahead of time, wrap in foil for neater, easier eating later on.

To save on prep time, pick up a package of pre-marinated baked tofu in the produce section of most grocery stores. Throw this meal together in about 10 minutes for 19 grams of protein and 5 grams of satisfying fiber.

Looking for a new brain-food favorite? Omega-3-rich fish promotes healthy brain aging and aids in memory retention. A little healthy fat from the avocado plus nutrient-rich quinoa and broccoli make this hard to beat for a complete lunch.

Roasted Fish with Quinoa Salad

Research shows that eating steamed broccoli can provide even more cholesterol-lowering benefits than enjoying raw. Quinoa is high in both fiber and protein with loads of other nutrients making it a good carb choice for boosting energy levels.

If you’ve got 20 minutes, this flavorful bowl is well-balanced with a healthy dose of vitamin C to boot. Steam broccoli in the microwave for about three minutes. Line your pan with aluminum foil before roasting fish for fast and easy clean-up.

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