Lunch Ideas With Consistent Nutritional Values

Pittsburgh Dietitian Blog Posts
January 11, 2016

It can get boring having the same meal for lunch every day. Don’t forget that there are a variety of meals that can provide the energy that you need to feel full and energized. It’s possible to find meals with similar nutritional values that provide a variety of flavors and presentations to keep you excited about your lunch. The key to finding recipes that fit into your daily needs is to remember that you’re looking for meals similar amounts of grain, protein, vegetables, and fat sources, but they can be prepped and mixed any way that you like. Here are some examples to get you started! For more ideas, be sure to reach out to a Case Specific Nutrition!Greek Chicken Pita:Ingredients:1 whole-wheat pita, cut into two to make pockets2 oz. chicken breast, shredded¼ cup diced tomato¼ cup cucumber1 Tablespoon chopped red onion¼ teaspoon dried oregano1 Tablespoon lemon juice¼ cup mixed greens2 Tablespoon crumbled feta cheeseDirections:Mix chicken, vegetables, feta, lemon juice, and oreganoToast pita (if desired)Fill pita with the mixture and enjoy!

Nutritional Info:

333 Calories

35 g CHO

28 g Pro

9 g Fat

greek chicken pita

Grilled Chicken SaladIngredients:3 oz. grilled chicken2 cups mixed greens1/2 cup mixed vegetables1 medium sized apple, chopped on salad1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Nutritional Info:

386 Calories

40 g CHO

25 g Pro

14 g Fat

Chicken and Vegetable Lemon Stir-fry (makes 4 servings)Ingredients:1 pound Chicken breast½ cup reduced sodium chicken broth2 Tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce2 Tablespoons water1 Tablespoon canola oil2 Tablespoons cornstarch6 cloves chopped garlic1 Tablespoon fresh ginger3 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice1 bunch asparagus2 cups brown riceDirections:Combine chicken broth and soy sauce in a bowlIn a separate bowl, combine water and cornstarch and stirHeat a large pan over medium-high heat, when hot add 1 tablespoon of oil, then add the asparagus and cook until tender (about 3-4 minutes)Add the garlic and the ginger and cook until golden (about 1 minute) and set asideIncrease the heat to high, then add 2 teaspoons of oil and cook chicken until browned and cooked through. Set chicken aside.Add the soy sauce mixture, bring to a boil and cook for 1-2 minutes.Add lemon juice and cornstarch mixture and stir well.When it simmers, return the asparagus and chicken to the pan and stir.Remove from heat and serve over brown rice.

Nutritional Info (per serving):372 Calories

42 g CHO

33 g Pro

8 g Fat


School lunch: Turkey and Swiss Sandwich, Banana and Peanut butterIngredients:2 oz. turkey breast2 pieces of 100% whole wheat bread1 slice Swiss cheese1 teaspoon mustard1 medium sized banana1 Tablespoon peanut butter

Nutritional Info:

343 Calories

36 g CHO

25 g Pro

11 g fat

Quinoa, Chicken and Kale SoupIngredients: (prepares about 6 servings)1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts (raw)1 1/4 cups chopped yellow onion (1 medium onion)1 cup chopped celery (about 3 stalks)4 cloves garlic, minced2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil3/4 cup dry quinoa1/2 tsp dried thyme1/2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed4 (14.5 oz) cans low-sodium chicken broth (7 cups)1 (15.5 oz) can Great Northern or Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed4 cups packed kale, roughly chopped (thick ribs chopped and discarded)3 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley2 Tbsp fresh lemon juiceDirections:Add chicken to a 6 or 7 quart slow cooker, then add onions, celery and garlic, then drizzle with olive oil.Add quinoa (for a more firm textured quinoa add during last 30 minutes to 1 hour of cooking, per reviewers comments), thyme, rosemary and pour in chicken broth.Cover and cook on HIGH 3 1/2 - 4 hours or LOW 7 - 8 hours.Remove chicken, let rest 10 minutes then cut into bite size pieces and return to soup. Meanwhile, add in beans, kale, parsley and lemon juice, then cover and continue to cook on HIGH heat another 10 - 20 minutes until kale has reached desired doneness.Serve warm

Nutritional Information (per 1 cup):

378 Calories

41 g Carbohydrates

31 g Protein

10 g Fat


Chicken Avocado Caprese WrapIngredients:1 whole-wheat tortilla wrap2 oz. grilled chicken1 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese1/2 tomato, sliced1/4 avocado, pitted and sliced1/4 cup fresh arugula1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegarSalt and pepper to tasteDirections:Layer slices of tomato, mozzarella cheese, grilled and avocado on the tortillaAdd chicken and arugulaDrizzle with balsamic vinegarSeason with salt and pepperFold the tortilla and enjoy!

Nutritional Info:

442 Calories

44 g CHO

35 g Pro

14 g Fat

caprese wrap
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