It's time to redeem the midday meal: No more bland sandwiches, soggy salads, or boring soups here. These lunches are exciting, satisfying, and portable. Our definitive guide to a healthy lunch on the go—complete with nutrition-boosting tips, make-ahead strategies, and tasty pack-and-go recipes, will have you rethinking your lunch break. Hearty greens and colorful, textured toppers make salads fun and filling. Packable and near-instant sandwiches and toasts go beyond the usual PB&J. Layered soups and fresh combinations are the no-fuss comfort foods you need at noon.
Beef and Barley Soup
Homemade soups and stews are great options for to-go lunches. They tend to get better with time, so here making ahead buys you time and flavor. Lamb may be used in place of chuck steak, if desired. Use one pound of boneless leg of lamb, cut into one-inch pieces. Pour hot servings into an insulated container to take for lunch, or reheat individual portions in the microwave as needed. Serve the soup with crusty bread, crackers, or pita chips.
Smart Packing Tip: Temperature control is key when packing a lunch. Keep cold food cold (below 40°) and hot food hot (above 140°) as it travels. Use insulated lunch bags, coolers, Thermoses, ice bags, and frozen gel packs to help with temperature control.