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NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-Sandwich Lunch Recipes

NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-Sandwich Lunch Recipes

While sandwiches are perfect for days when we’re running late or have a hankering for a kid-like lunch again, take a step outside the (lunch) box and try a few non-sandwich lunch recipes once and awhile. You can create a more exciting, more satiating, and possibly healthier lunch with just a few tweaks here and there.

You’ll want to select a nice mix of easy-to-digest protein, some healthy fats, and some fiber when you create your lunch. This combination will ensure that your lunch fills you up without weighing you down. Start with some of the options below and turn lunch into a more exciting part of your day with these non-sandwich lunch recipes. Don’t worry, they’re still very easy to make, and many of these options can be made ahead of time just like sandwiches. You never know—you might just find a new favorite lunch recipe!

1. Avocado Egg Salad

NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

    The Roasted Root

    Don’t limit your egg salad to mayo alone—opt for something just as filling but a little lighter with the almighty avocado. Packed with healthy fats, fiber and even a little protein, avocado can be a great addition to any lunch of your choice. Its creamy nature creates a delectable egg salad in this recipe by The Roasted Root. Enjoy it plain, top a bed of greens with it, or slather it on some toast or crackers for an easy meal in minutes.

    2. Healthy Buffalo Chicken Wrap

    NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

      The Creative Bite

      Wraps may be similar to sandwiches, but they have the benefit of being able to be created out of any type of wrap you wish. There’s now whole grain, coconut, and even veggie-based wraps you can choose from. This Healthy Buffalo Chicken Wrap happens to use a whole grain wrap and is a healthier version of traditional Buffalo wraps you might be used to. Get the easy recipe from The Creative Bite and see what you think!

      3. Pasta and Avocado Caesar Salad

      NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

        Natasha’s Kitchen

        Perhaps you just can’t give up all the carbs at lunch. Now you don’t have to since this recipe by Natasha’s Kitchen uses pasta for a quick and easy lunch salad recipe that’s filling yet still light too. Make it ahead, and whip it out when hunger strikes!

        4. Superfood Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

        NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

          Iowa Girl Eats

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          Salad should not be boring, especially at lunch where it’s the main meal of your mid-day eats. So take your salad up a few notches and add some light protein along with a fabulous salad dressing recipe. This Superfood Salad With Lemon Vinaigrette by Iowa Girl Eats has you covered.

          5. Quinoa Chicken Bowls With a Mango Salsa

          NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

            Chelsea’s Messy Apron

            Bowls are all the rage right now, and the possibilities for quick combinations are limitless. Prepare a batch of chicken and quinoa ahead of time, along with the salsa, and use them in a variety of your meals throughout the week for quick and easy meals that contain healthy ingredients. These Quinoa Chicken Bowls With a Mango Salsa are the perfect option to start with!

            6. Paleo Avocado Tuna Salad

            NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

              Cook Eat Paleo

              Just like egg salad can be made with avocados, so can tuna salad. In fact, tuna salad made with avocado isn’t only nice and colorful, but it’s also more filling thanks to the extra fiber found in avocados. Here’s a fun fact: Both tuna and avocados pack heart-healthy fats, so you can feel especially good about noshing on this lunch recipe by Cook Eat Paleo each day!

              7. Creamy Turkey Pinwheels

              NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                Yummy Healthy Easy

                Pinwheels are a more exciting form of wraps in a way. They’re also a bit easier to eat and can be dipped into any sauce of your choice. These Creamy Turkey Pinwheels by Yummy Healthy Easy are easy to make, and they will keep you filled up all afternoon long thanks to the lean protein found in turkey and the fiber found in the other ingredients.

                8. Avocado Toast With Eggs, Spinach and Tomatoes

                NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                  Two Peas & Their Pod

                  Topped toast is also nice to enjoy at lunch, and it can be a little lighter than bread-heavy sandwiches. Use a whole grain or gluten-free toast of choice and top it with this protein-rich topping using eggs, spinach, and avocados created by Two Peas & Their Pod. Or, if you’re not into bread at all for lunch, just enjoy it without toast—it will still keep you full and taste just as great!

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                  9. Pizza Pasta Salad

                  NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                    Spend With Pennies

                    Pizza is a favorite of many for lunch, but you can lighten up your pizza and lunch with this Pizza Pasta Salad by Spend With Pennies. Plus, who wouldn’t love to dive into this recipe for lunch and not need a nap right after?

                    10. Spinach, Roasted Red Pepper, and Feta Turkey Wrap

                    NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                      NeighborFood

                      Light, filling, and totally satisfying, this Spinach, Roasted Red Pepper, and Feta Turkey Wrap by NeighborFood makes for an easy lunch recipe that you can make ahead just like sandwiches. If you choose a whole grain wrap, you’ll even pack in some extra fiber too!

                      11. Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Soup

                      NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                        DAMN delicious

                        Maybe you’re feeling under the weather, craving something cozy, or you just happen to love soup. Whatever the case, soup can serve as the perfect make-ahead lunch that happens to taste even better a few days later after it sits in the fridge. Or, make a batch of this Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Soup by DAMN delicious in the slow-cooker during the night, and carry it the next day to work to share with your co-workers. Just be warned, you might have them asking you to make it again and again!

                        12. Balsamic Chicken Salad With Lemon Quinoa

                        NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                          Cafe Delights

                          Salad can be a nice lunch option for those that prefer something light and filling. It can also be enjoyable to look at and makes a lovely canvas for limitless amounts of ingredients. This Balsamic Chicken Salad With Lemon Quinoa by Cafe Delights is the perfect combination of lean protein, fiber from greens and veggies, and fiber from the almighty quinoa grain-like seed. You won’t be hungry all day after this lunch!

                          13. Paleo Lemon Tahini Tuna Salad

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                          NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                            Stupid Easy Paleo

                            Paleo recipes eliminate grains and legumes, so lunch options that cater to Paleo devotees make great non-sandwich lunch recipes to turn to when you want something without bread for your mid-day meal. Don’t let the bread-free part fool you, though; Paleo Lemon Tahini Tuna Salad by Stupid Easy Paleo still pack satiety thanks to the high amounts of protein, fiber, and healthy fats so you’ll feel great all day long!

                            14. Tropical Lentil Lunch Bowls With Coconut Lime Dressing

                            NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                              Sweet Peas AND Saffron

                              Take a vacation with your lunch every once and awhile and try some exotic flavor at lunch. Tropical lentil Lunch Bowls With Coconut Lime Dressing is a fun one to start with, and it’s a great source of meatless protein and fiber thanks to the use of lentils. The dressing alone is worth giving this recipe by Sweet Peas AND Saffron a shot—you won’t regret it!

                              15. California Roll Sushi Bowl

                              NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                                Wonky Wonderful

                                Love sushi? Then you need this California Roll Sushi Bowl recipe by Wonky Wonderful in your lunch routine (and life). It isn’t only filled with traditional sushi ingredients, but it’s also quick to throw together and there’s no need for time-consuming sushi rolling here!

                                16. Rice Bowl With Fried Egg and Avocado

                                NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich-Lunch-Recipes-Lifehack

                                  bon appétit

                                  Eggs make a great lunch option because they’re packed with protein, lighter than meat, and they even have some heart-healthy fats. While hard-boiled eggs are nice, fried eggs can have some major appeal to those that prefer a warm option. Plus, this Rice Bowl With Fried Egg and Avocado by bon appétit can be thrown together in less than five minutes if you have your rice made ahead of time. Choose whatever rice you want, grab a skillet, and go!

                                  17. Tuna Patties

                                  NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                                    Simply Recipes

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                                    Tuna patties are loved by both children and adults, so enjoy some tuna patties for lunch a little more often. You can turn this recipe from Simple Recipes into your own lunch creation by either pairing it with a salad, some veggies, your favorite dip, and even serve them with lettuce and a whole grain bun just like a beef burger. Make these ahead and enjoy all week long!

                                    18. Peanut Tofu Buddha Bowl

                                    NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                                      delish knowledge

                                      Vegans rejoice! This Peanut Tofu Buddha Bowl packs meatless protein that’s still hearty, and it has a tangy, Thai flavor thanks to the peanut sauce that can be made ahead and used on salads, bowls, and wraps throughout the week. This recipe by delish knowledge would even make for the perfect meatless dinner on another note. Don’t let tofu scare you if you’ve never had it—you just might love it!

                                      19. Grilled Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Wraps

                                      NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                                        CREME de la CRUMB

                                        Speaking of exotic flavors, why not use the humble pineapple in your lunch every once and awhile to give you a tropical treat? Here’s a nutrition secret you might like to know too: Pineapple contains a special enzyme called bromelain that helps break down proteins making the protein easier to digest. This means you can get the most ‘bang for your buck’ from whatever protein you pair with pineapple, plus the bright yellow fruit even offers vitamin C too. Get the recipe for Grilled Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken Wraps by CREME de la CRUMB and give it a try this week!

                                        20. Strawberry Pecan Spinach Salad

                                        NO MORE SANDWICHES! 20 Handy Non-sandwich Lunch Recipes

                                          Culinary Hill

                                          Finally, for a healthy, filling and still light salad, this amazing creation by Culinary Hill is one of the best non-sandwich lunch recipes you can try during spring and summer. Feel free to add whatever lean protein you want for a more filling option, rotate the nuts if you prefer to, and enjoy the sweet and savory flavors that this salad offers—it’s a winner for sure!

                                          Want more creative and easy lunch ideas? These other 20 sandwich-free ideas have you covered!

                                          Featured photo credit: bon appétit via bonappetit.com

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                                          Last Updated on August 15, 2018

                                          7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

                                          7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

                                          Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

                                          Video Summary

                                          Why is it important to train up our core strength?

                                          There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

                                          This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

                                          Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

                                          In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

                                          One Exercise, multiple benefits

                                          There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

                                          By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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                                          When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

                                          Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

                                          In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

                                          What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

                                          What will happen when you start doing planks every day

                                            1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

                                            Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

                                            • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
                                            • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
                                            • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
                                            • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

                                            2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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                                              Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

                                              Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

                                              3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

                                                Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

                                                4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

                                                  Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

                                                  A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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                                                  A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

                                                  On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

                                                  5. You’ll improve overall balance

                                                    Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

                                                    6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

                                                      Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

                                                      7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                                                        Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                                                        How to hold a plank position

                                                        1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                                                        2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                                                        3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                                                        4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                                                        5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                                                        6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                                                        7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                                                        Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                                                        Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                                                          How to improve your plank time gradually

                                                          1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                                                          2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                                                          3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                                                          Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                                                          Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                                                          You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                                                          • Prolapse
                                                          • After prolapse surgery
                                                          • Pelvic pain conditions
                                                          • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                                                          • Previous childbirth
                                                          • Overweight

                                                          Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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