Bored of Pret sandwiches? So over M&S salads? We’ve got your back.

Everyone knows work lunches are the worst. Whether it’s a soggy homemade salad or a plastic-packaged sandwich, eating al desko is uninspiring at best. Especially when the pull of Pizza Express is all too real!

But if you’re determined to stick to homemade, there’s so much more to packed lunches than limp lettuce and wrinkly tomatoes. Take a look at these four healthy dishes you can whip up at home and take into work – just make sure you’re prepared for the jealous staring…

Mexican Bean Salad

This spicy bowlful is like a burrito without the extra carbs – fresh, healthy and totally delicious. Mix kidney beans, pinto beans, sliced avocado, cherry tomatoes, and diced red onion in a bowl, then add a drizzle of dressing (we like lime and coriander) and top with diced chilli and a pinch of cumin. If you want a bit more protein, hard boil two eggs to finish the dish.

Top tip: pack your dressing separately and add just before eating to avoid sogginess!

Tortellini with Pesto and Broccoli

Step away from the chicken and bacon pasta pot – this green version is packed with flavour and will keep you full till dinnertime. Cook your broccoli for 2 minutes, then add fresh tortellini and cook to pack instructions. Drain and rinse under water until cool, then toss with pesto, pine nuts and balsamic vinegar. Top with cherry tomatoes and chill until you’re ready to tuck in.

Top tip: let this dish return to room temperature before you eat it, as the pesto and tomatoes will be at their most flavoursome.

Healthy Hoisin Wraps

These wraps have such serious Chinese takeaway vibes, they make us excited for 12.30pm. Cut chicken into strips and mix with hoisin sauce, then spread out in an ovenproof dish and grill until sizzling. Warm some tortillas, then spread them with more hoisin sauce. Add the meat along with sliced cucumber, spring onion and some watercress, then wrap them up and pack into your lunchbox.

Top tip: want to make these wraps even healthier? Use turkey rather than chicken.

 

Four healthy lunches you can eat at your desk

Versatile Veggie Soup

Soup is one of the quickest and easiest meals to make, so it’s perfect for packed lunches. With this recipe, you can use whatever veg you have in the fridge –about 200g of onion, celery, carrots, parsnip, broccoli, etc. should do it. Fry your veg in a little oil to soften, then cover with stock and simmer for 10-15 minutes until tender. Blend until smooth, season and serve with crème fraiche and chopped herbs.

Top tip: make a big batch and freeze for up to a month.

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Jen Allison
Jen is an online writer with a penchant for rose gold jewellery and oversized knitwear. She’s a stickler for grammar, loves a good book and can’t get enough of Instagram.

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