This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy.

Looking for some simple, healthy lunch ideas to pack for work? These 20+ lunch recipes are perfectly portable and can be enjoyed cold (no microwave needed)!

Pinterest graphic for easy, healthy work lunch recipe ideas.

Whether you’re spending the day in the office or at school, or simply in need of some make-ahead lunches while you work from home, I’ve rounded up 20+ of my favourite easy, healthy lunch recipes from the blog to help you decide what to make!

As a dietitian, I know how important it is to have something nourishing, tasty, and satisfying to get you though your busy day.

Each of the recipes below meets certain criteria to make them perfect to enjoy for lunch, no matter where you may be!

What Makes A Healthy, Packable Lunch

To make it on this Healthy Lunch Ideas List, the meals had to meet certain requirements for a good packed lunch:

  1. They can be packed and carried on your commute without getting soggy/making a mess.
  2. They can be enjoyed cold, so no need to reheat them if you don’t have access to a microwave.
  3. They can be made in advance, so no scrambling in the morning to get something together. You can make these dishes the night before and keep them in the fridge to grab and go. TIP: try to make some larger batches of these meals, so you can cook once and eat multiple times! 
  4. They are nutritionally balanced, giving you some protein, healthy fats, complex carbs, and lots of veggies. These types of foods and meal combinations will keep you energized and able to focus through your busy workday.
  5. They are easy to make and not too time-intensive – I know your schedule is a busy one!!

1. Kale Butternut Squash Salad With Farro

overhead zoomed out photo of kale butternut squash salad with farro and goat cheese on a white plate
This kale butternut squash salad is made with delicious ingredients like farro, goat cheese, dried cranberries, and pumpkin seeds. It's easy, healthy, and so satisfying!
Get the recipe

2. Winter Pasta Salad

winter pasta salad with roasted butternut squash, mushrooms, broccoli, arugula, and shrimp in a bowl
This Winter Pasta Salad is made with oven-roasted butternut squash, broccoli, and mushrooms, as well as arugula, shrimp, and a thyme-mustard vinaigrette. This recipe is easy, healthy, and can be made dairy-free, gluten-free, and/or vegan if needed.
Get the recipe

3. Roasted Broccoli Salad

closeup shot of white bowl with roasted broccoli, farro, dried cranberries, and feta salad
This Roasted Broccoli Salad is made with chewy farro, dried cranberries, crumbled feta, and a simple red wine vinegar + oregano salad dressing. It's easy, healthy, and the perfect side to add to your meal!
Get the recipe

4. 20-Minute Healthy Tuna Pasta Salad

healthy tuna pasta salad with olives, tomatoes, arugula, and herbs
This Tuna Pasta Salad Recipe is easy, fast, and healthy. Made without mayo and ready in 20-minutes! Perfect for a make-ahead meal.
Recipe is dairy-free and can be gluten-free if using gluten-free pasta.
Get the recipe

5. Healthy Taco Salmon Rice Bowl

Overhead photo of a taco salmon rice bowl with vegetables.
This taco salmon rice bowl is a super easy, healthy, and colourful meal! Nutritionally balanced and full of flavour – it's perfect for a weeknight dinner or a packed work lunch. Recipe is gluten-free and can easily be made dairy-free if needed.
Get the recipe

6. Strawberry Quinoa Tabbouleh With Feta

small bowl with strawberry quinoa tabbouleh salad and 2 pieces of feta cheese and gold fork
This Strawberry Quinoa Salad is made with feta cheese, cucumbers, tomatoes, parsley, and mint. It's refreshing, nutritious, and incredibly easy to make! Gluten-free, with dairy-free/vegan option.
Get the recipe

7. Shrimp Taco Salad Bowl

taco salad bowl with romaine lettuce, shrimp, avocado, bell peppers, tomatoes, quinoa, lime, cilantro
This taco salad recipe is such an easy and quick-to-make shrimp dinner idea. It combines sautéed shrimp and nutritious cooked quinoa with healthy salad ingredients, such as crunchy romaine lettuce and chopped bell peppers. A terrific 35-minute meal!
Get the recipe

8. Cold Chopped Quinoa Salad

chopped quinoa salad with cucumbers, carrots, parsley, pomegranates, hard boiled eggs in pink bowl
This Cold Chopped Quinoa Salad is perfect for lunch or dinner meal prep! It's made with pomegranates, chopped carrots, cucumbers, parsley, and protein-rich eggs to help make this salad a complete, healthy meal. It's gluten-free, vegetarian, and ready in under 30 minutes.
Get the recipe

9. Roasted Vegetable Pasta Salad With Shrimp

pasta salad with roasted red peppers, cherry tomatoes, corn, shrimp, and arugula in a white bowl, gold fork, and blue dish towel
This roasted veggie pasta salad is packed with balanced nutrition and tons of antioxidants! Perfect to make for an easy weeknight dinner, packed lunch, or to bring to your next summer BBQ.
Get the recipe

10. Cold Soba Noodle Salad With Tempeh

cold soba noodles salad with tempeh, lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, red peppers, and radishes in a brown bowl
This nutritious soba noodle recipe is made with a delicious tamari lime dressing. Vegan, gluten-free, and ready in 30 minutes!
Get the recipe

11. No-Mayo Tuna Salad

no mayo tuna salad on toast with arugula
Greek yogurt adds extra protein and avocado adds healthy fats and fibre to a traditional tuna salad. This no-mayo option comes together in under 10 minutes. Add to toast, pitas, or wraps for a quick lunch.
Get the recipe

12. Pesto Quinoa Bowl

pesto quinoa bowl with sweet potatoes, broccoli, hard boiled egg, pecans
This Pesto Quinoa Bowl is packed with nutritious and tasty ingredients! It's great for meal prep or as a packed lunch. Recipe is gluten-free, with vegan option available.
Get the recipe

13. Crispy Tofu Salad With Tahini Dressing

Overhead photo of a large white plate topped with a colourful chopped salad topped with tofu cubes and a drizzle of tahini dressing.
Filled with crunchy veggies and crispy tofu, this healthy salad is satisfying, delicious, and packed with nutrients. With a creamy and rich miso sesame tahini dressing, this recipe is vegan and gluten-free. This salad is meant to be eaten cold and enjoyed as a complete meal!
Get the recipe

14. Massaged Kale Salad With Sweet Potato & Goat Cheese

This fall salad combines massaged lacinato kale, roasted sweet potatoes, pomegranates, and toasted pecans for a delicious and filling meal or side.
Get the recipe

15. Easy Caprese Pasta Salad

overhead shot of white bowl with cavatappi pasta, chopped cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, bocconcini, and basil
Bursting with flavour, this caprese pasta salad recipe is easy to make, or make-ahead. It's perfect for a BBQ, picnic, or packed lunch idea. Balsamic vinaigrette and pesto dressing options included!
Get the recipe

16. Broccoli, Cauliflower & Salmon Salad

Overhead photo of a white plate topped with arugula, cauliflower, broccoli, salmon, and a drizzle of curry tahini dressing.
This roasted broccoli, cauliflower, and salmon salad is made with arugula, quinoa, dried cherries, and a creamy curry tahini dressing. It's an easy, healthy, and balanced meal that packs in a ton of nutrition, like fiber and protein. Recipe is gluten-free and dairy-free.
Get the recipe

17. Cucumber Avocado Salad With Quinoa

large white bowl with cucumber, avocado, quinoa, hard boiled eggs, sauerkraut salad and gold serving utensils
This Easy Cucumber Avocado Salad is made with nutritious ingredients like quinoa, sauerkraut, nutritional yeast, hemp seeds, lemon, and fresh herbs. It's healthy, refreshing, and can be enjoyed as a complete meal or side salad! Gluten-free with vegan option available.
Get the recipe

18. No-Mayo Avocado Egg Salad Sandwich

white plate with mashed avocado egg salad sandwich over a slice of toast
Using avocado as a substitute for mayonnaise, this healthy boiled-egg salad sandwich recipe is packed with protein, healthy fats, and fibre for a filling, balanced meal. Plus, it's made in 20 minutes or less!
Get the recipe

19. Tuna Pasta Salad With Pesto

overhead shot of large white bowl with tuna pasta salad, pesto, cherry tomatoes and gold spoons
This Tuna Pasta Salad With Pesto is an easy, healthy make-ahead lunch idea. It's made with protein-packed canned tuna and a dairy-free hemp seed pesto. Simple, delicious, and ready in 30 minutes!
Get the recipe

20. Chimichurri Grain Bowl

grain bowl with roasted sweet potatoes, romanesco, radishes, chimichurri sauce, and a fried egg
This High-Protein Chimichurri Grain Bowl is a healthy vegetarian lunch or weeknight dinner idea. Recipe can be made ahead and enjoyed either warm or cold! 
Get the recipe

21. Canned Mackerel Pasta Salad

canned mackerel pasta salad with peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, basil, and arugula in pink bowl
This Canned Mackerel Pasta Salad is an excellent source of omega-3s, protein, and tons of veggies. Super delicious, ready in 30 mins, and great for meal prep or a packed lunch!
Get the recipe

And there you have it – 20+ Easy, Healthy Lunch Ideas to pack with you to work (or school)! I hope you guys find some inspiration from this list, and I hope that it saves you some time, energy, and stress when deciding what to make.

If you make any of these recipes, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram or Pinterest – seeing your creations always makes my day. You can also subscribe to my email list to never miss a new recipe or nutrition education post!

More Healthy Recipe Roundups

Get the Recipe: 20+ Healthy Lunch Ideas, Including Kale Butternut Squash Salad

This kale butternut squash salad is made with delicious ingredients like farro, goat cheese, dried cranberries, and pumpkin seeds. It's easy, healthy, and so satisfying!
overhead zoomed out photo of kale butternut squash salad with farro and goat cheese on a white plate
Print Pin
5 from 2 votes
Leave a Review



  • Preheat oven to 400F and bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • Remove kale leaves from stems before washing and drying. Place kale in a large salad/mixing bowl and drizzle 2 Tbsp olive oil, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt, and pepper overtop.
  • Using your hands, squeeze and massage the oil-lemon mixture into the kale, similar to how you would knead dough (about 1 minute). Cover the bowl and let sit while you cook the rest of the ingredients.
  • Cook farro in the pot of boiling water using the "pasta method" or according to package directions. Drain when done.
  • Place butternut squash cubes on a baking sheet and toss in remaining 1 Tbsp of olive oil, cinnamon, and salt. Transfer to the oven for 30 minutes, tossing halfway.
  • Once both farro and squash are cooked, add them to the massaged kale along with goat cheese, dried cranberries, and pumpkin seeds. Toss well, adding more salt + pepper if desired. Serve and enjoy!


*This recipe makes about 2 servings if eating as a full meal, or 4 servings if enjoying as a side salad.
*This massaged kale salad can be made in advance and stored in an airtight container for about 3 days in the fridge. Kale holds up well and doesn’t go soggy like other leafy greens.
*Farro is NOT a gluten-free grain. If you need to follow a GF diet, simply swap the farro with another whole grain like quinoa or brown rice.
*For a dairy-free/vegan version, simply omit the goat cheese or replace with a vegan alternative.


As a dietitian, I create recipes with whole food ingredients that provide the nutrients needed for optimal health. My nutrition philosophy does not focus on numbers; however, I understand that this information can be helpful.

Do note that the nutrition info provided is an estimate and I cannot guarantee correctness of the displayed values. These numbers will differ depending on brands used, recipe modifications, and amount eaten. If you require specific nutrition information due to medical reasons, please consult with your dietitian or physician.

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know by leaving a recipe rating below, or by tagging @walderwellness on Instagram. I love seeing your beautiful creations!

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy.