Starting your week with a little meal prep is a lifesaver! With a few simple tips and planning, you can make lunchtime and snacks a no brainer. Save time and energy with these lunch & snack ideas.
We’ve covered how to get dinner on the table without all the stress, but what about lunch and snacks? It’s the worst when it’s past lunchtime, you can feel the hanger (hungry + anger) creeping in, and you know there aren’t any leftovers in the fridge from the night before.
Let’s simplify it so we aren’t hangry all afternoon or stress eating a bag of popcorn for lunch.
There are some simple foods to buy that make planning lunch and snacks each week a breeze.
Best Foods to Prep for the Week
Whether you’re headed to work out of the house, wanting to have healthy lunch ideas for at home, or packing lunches for kids, here are some of my healthy packed lunch essentials:
Healthy Wrap Recipes
Wraps are quick and easy to make, plus they store well.
- Ham with Smoked Black Pepper White Cheddar Slices, tomato, hummus, mustard and spring mix greens.
- Black Pepper Turkey with Muenster Slices, mayo, bacon, avocado, tomato and spring mix greens. (AKA California Turkey Wrap)
- Hummus with Pepper Jack Slices, chipotle mayo, red bell pepper, cucumber, avocado, broccoli sprouts and spring mix greens.
- Roasted Chicken with Swiss Slices, chipotle mayo, bacon, tomato and spring mix greens.
Apples and bananas are a no brainer here! They take little to no prep and you can dip them in your favorite nut butter.
Tip: If you need to cut apples the night before, just toss it with a little lemon juice to avoid browning.
Blueberries are nice too because you just have to rinse them and put them in a container – no extra cutting involved or food waste.
When I am shopping, I like to see what seasonal produce is available to purchase that week too.
Baby carrots and hummus are always a great packed snack option. Grape tomatoes and celery would be great too. Grab some snap peas or mini peppers to throw in too.
Cheese & Crackers
Tillamook makes these adorable little snack portions – perfect for traveling. The Smoked Black Pepper White Cheddar are my personal favorite, but be sure to use their store locator to see what cheese variety you can find at your local grocer.
Muffins make the perfect snack! You can bake a batch at the beginning of the week and you have a quick breakfast or snack all week. These recipes are always a hit.
- Blueberry Oatmeal Muffins
- Healthy Double Chocolate Muffins
- Almond Flour Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins
- Yogurt Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
- Vegan Pumpkin Muffins with Chocolate Chips
Smoothies make the perfect on the go breakfast or a healthy snack. They only take 5 minutes to throw together, so that’s always a plus! I always have stuff on hand to make an easy mango or peanut butter & jelly smoothie.
Dried fruit makes for a fun snack and is like a little treat. My favorite is definitely dried mango, but apricots, pineapple, banana, etc. are all delicious too.
I’m also sharing more on my favorite wraps below!
How to Make The Best Wrap
This California Turkey Wrap is one of my favorites – it has (in my opinion) the best combination of flavors and textures.
Sliced cheese is a must here, giving you pre-sliced portions that lay perfectly in a wrap.
First lay out the wrap and spread on a thin layer of mayo or your favorite sandwich spread. Then add your favorite greens and about 2-3 slices of lunch meat, cheese slices, and any veggies you want on top.
Carefully fold in the sides while rolling and turning the ends in at the same time.
Slice wraps in half and store in an airtight container or foil until ready to eat.
Tip: If your wrap is a little stuffed, secure with a toothpick.
Some of My Favorite Sandwich & Wrap Recipes
- Strawberry Basil Avocado Wrap
- Southwest Chicken Wrap
- Balsamic Chicken Wrap
- Healthy Cherry Chicken Salad
- Fattoush Salad Inspired Lemon Pepper Tuna Wrap
- Tex Mex Veggie Burger Collard Wraps
- Chili Lime Tuna Wraps
- California Turkey Wrap
Meal Prep Salads for Lunch
Bonus Tip for Busy Moms
This year I finally switched up our snack situation and I wish I would have done it sooner! I bought two smaller baskets to keep on the counter to store the day’s snacks. My girls pick out their snacks for the day each morning and fill their baskets with yogurt, cheese, muffins, fruits, veggies, crackers, etc. and it alleviates being asked for a snack all day long.
When it’s out for the day they’re done. It helps them space out their snacks for the day when they can see it all in one spot. If they end up still hungry, they’re allowed to get extra fresh food snacks. It’s been a sanity saver for me!