September: back to work and back to school for the kids. When you open your fridge, the sudden realization hits that packed lunches are about to become an everyday ordeal once again.
We compiled a few tasty recipes from across the internet that will totally up your lunch game status and give you something to look forward to if you’re heading back to the office. Many of these can also make great dinners that can be saved for leftovers the next day (two meals in one are always the winner in a busy house).
Lunch doesn’t have to be boring. Say it with me again, “lunch doesn’t have to be boring!” These recipes fall all along the lunch spectrum — from smoothies to curried chickpeas and one pan wonders. The criteria? It had to keep us excited for lunch, it had to be moderately easy to make, and it had to make us hungry.
Chicken Cucumber Pitas
Via Taste of Home
Not quite sure what to do with all the cucumbers coming from your neighbors garden? This recipe is a home run. Using pita bread is a great way to change up your typical bread options and its pocket shape is great for little to no crumbs!
Avocado, Turkey and Hummus Wrap
Via A Sweet Pea Chef
We get it, sandwiches can get boring; how about trying those same ingredients in a wrap? This recipe has simple ingredients that work amazing together. This wrap is a great portable option for work.
Via Pop Sugar
Skip the Chipotle run! This low-calorie bowl is perfect for making the night before. Add as much or as little toppings as you want, and voila!
Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Smoothie
Via Love Grows Wild
This smoothie has oatmeal to keep you full during the workday, plus it’s rich with antioxidants and you get your daily greens in too! A smoothie can also be a great energy boost throughout the day and can be stored in the fridge overnight.
Sun-dried Tomato Pasta Salad
Via Pop Sugar
This is a great recipe to take leftovers to the office the next day. Our favorite is the zesty dressing with the sun-dried tomatoes. Add some parmesan and basil and it’ll have your coworkers wondering, “What smells so good?”
Via Laura Fuentes
Let’s start showing more love for creative soups to bring to work! Pack it in a thermos or heat it up in the microwave at work, this lunch idea is another customizable option to what you like in your bowl. You can totally make a pot of this for the family and bring the rest to the job!
Curried Chicken Bowls with Garlicky Spinach
Via Eating Bird Food
Here’s where the spice lovers game comes in! Serve this over brown rice for a super filling and nutritious meal.
Lemon Herb Mediterranean Pasta Salad
Via Cafe Delites
Even though summer is winding down, this perfect cold salad still can make you feel like you’re in the Mediterranean! Not filling enough? Add chicken, tofu or your favorite protein. I love the mix of cucumber, feta and olives for a perfect fresh and tangy flavor.
One Pan Italian Sausage and Veggies
Via Chelsea’s Messy Apron
One pan and that’s it? Count us in. Plus, having veggies always makes you feel a bit better about what you’re eating. Feel free to take it up a notch with spicy sausage, or opt for the vegan option with tofu.