Healthy Lunch and Dinner Examples

The meals below meet the Healthy Nutrition Guidelines. Prepare recipes with less sodium, and choose pre-made products with no or low sodium content.

Boxed Lunch Examples

  • Chicken taco salad: Grilled skinless chicken breast, lettuce, tomato, bell pepper, onion, homemade salsa, smashed avocado, low-fat sour cream. Serve with baked tortilla chips, fresh fruit, small cookie.
  • Boxed salad: Leaf lettuce, sliced tomato, hardboiled egg, fresh raspberries, kidney and garbanzo beans, chopped spinach, diced red onion, shredded carrots, sliced mushrooms, roasted beets, and sliced cucumber with low-fat dressing on the side. Serve with fresh fruit, whole grain roll, and unsalted almonds and sunflower seeds.
  • Grilled or roasted chicken sandwich: Whole wheat or rye bread, lean roasted or grilled chicken breast, lettuce, tomato, avocado slices, mustard and low-fat mayonnaise on the side. Serve with baby carrots and fresh fruit.
  • (Vegetarian) Roasted vegetable and mozzarella wrap box lunch: Marinated, roasted and chilled eggplant, red and yellow peppers, red onion, zucchini with part skim mozzarella cheese in a whole wheat wrap?Serve with unsalted nuts, cookie, whole fruit.
  • (Vegetarian) Hummus and pita lunch: Garbanzo bean spread, mozzarella cheese, tomato, onions, smashed avocado, lettuce on whole wheat pita bread. Serve with small salad, light salad dressing, whole fruit, small cookie.
  • (Vegetarian and Vegan) Roasted vegetable wrap box lunch: Marinated and roasted eggplant, red and yellow pepper, red onion, zucchini in a whole wheat wrap. Serve with unsalted nuts, dark chocolate square, whole fruit.

Buffet Examples

  • Deconstructed burrito bar: Grilled skinless chicken or lean pulled pork with vegetarian black beans, sautéed onions and peppers, steamed corn, low-fat cheddar cheese, brown rice, homemade salsa, smashed avocado, tomatoes, leaf lettuce. Serve with side salad with low-fat dressing, sorbet with berries.
  • Meat and potatoes buffet: Baked or grilled fish (3–5 oz portion), skinless chicken, beef, or pork with choice of oven-baked herbed potatoes or herbed wild rice, steamed mixed vegetables. Serve with green salad with low-fat dressing on the side, baked apples with vanilla low-fat frozen yogurt.
  • Pasta bar: Whole wheat pasta with marinara sauce, sautéed vegetables, grilled skinless chicken. Serve with spinach salad with dried cranberries and chickpeas, low-fat dressing on the side, angel food cake with berries.
  • Potato bar: Baked potatoes with low-fat sour cream, broccoli, low-fat cheddar cheese, green onions. Serve with choice of turkey chili or vegetarian chili, green salad with low-fat dressing on the side, low-fat fruit crisp.
  • Soup and salad buffet: Leaf lettuce, tomatoes, mushrooms, roasted beets, unsalted nuts and seeds, sliced red onions, baby spinach, garbanzo beans, hard-boiled egg slices, fresh fruit. Serve with soups made with broth or skim milk (not cream) and low-fat yogurt parfait.
  • Stir-fry: Choice of skinless chicken breast or tofu with stir-fried vegetables, steamed brown rice, cabbage salad with low-fat dressing. Serve with fresh fruit, fortune cookie.

Plated Examples

  • Baked salmon fillet: Fillet of salmon with lemon dill sauce. Serve with baby green salad with choice of low-fat dressings on table, smashed red potatoes, steamed vegetables, and low-fat chocolate pudding with berries.
  • Red beans and rice: Spiced red beans and brown rice with smashed avocado, sautéed seasonal vegetables. Serve with seasonal fruit and citrus sorbet.
  • Pineapple chicken: Skinless chicken breast (3–5 oz portion) in pineapple, garlic, celery seed, and tarragon marinade, whole grain pasta with sautéed vegetables, garden salad with oil-and-vinegar dressing. Serve with sorbet and fresh seasonal fruit.
  • (Vegetarian and vegan) Portobello mushroom entrée: Marinated and grilled Portobello mushroom filled with polenta, grilled vegetables, and fresh herbs. Serve with roasted mushroom tomato ragout, fresh fruit.
  • (Vegetarian and vegan) Grilled tempeh and pasta entrée: Grilled fermented soy bean cake with sautéed zucchini and vegetables in a light tomato sauce served over pasta. Serve with fresh fruit.

Are you interested in healthy breakfast and refreshment examples?