41 protein-packed lunch ideas that are guaranteed to help you burn fat all day long
41 protein-packed lunch ideas that are guaranteed to help you burn fat all day long
This article is shared with permission from our friends at PaleoHacks.
Adding quality protein to your lunch is a great way to get a boost of energy to get you through your busy afternoon.
Whether you’re looking for a protein-packed meal that will keep you full throughout the day or a light dish packed with greens, protein will easily adapt to your mid-day meal.
We’ve found 41 simple (and creative) recipes to give you the protein you need while keeping your taste buds satisfied.
1. Tuna + Avocado Boats
Here is a really simple recipe filled with good fats and protein! Make your own Paleo-friendly tuna salad and pack it in a fresh, creamy avocado.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Tuna and Avocado Boats
2. Mushrooms Stuffed with Chicken + Roasted Peppers
This recipe is almost completely comprised of protein. It offers portabella mushrooms, chicken, and almond flour for a super protein punch! Sautéed veggies are the perfect addition of flavor here.
Recipe: Meatified | Mushrooms Stuffed with Chicken and Roasted Peppers
3. Baked Omelet Rolls
Sure, omelets are typically a breakfast staple, but when you roll them up they are a great lunch meal on the go. You can even add some of your favorite veggies if you want to increase your green intake.
Recipe: Eat Drink Paleo | Baked Omelet Rolls
4. Tuna in Cucumber Cups
Here’s a fresh, bite-sized recipe that only requires five ingredients. If you want to make a larger version, just slice a cucumber in half and load the tuna in rather than making small cups.
Recipe: Tastes Lovely | Tuna in Cucumber Cups
5. Ham + Cheese Pinwheels
It may not sound Paleo, but it certainly is thanks to delicious Paleo cheese! This simple lunch can easily be used as an appetizer as well.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Ham and Cheese Pinwheels
6. Fish + Pineapple Ceviche
Is there anything fresher than ceviche? It’s quick and easy to make too. Add some yam chips on the side to give this recipe a little more heartiness.
Recipe: Eat Drink Paleo | Fish & Pineapple Ceviche
7. Paleo Sardine Stuffed Avocado
It’s salty, creamy, and satisfying. Not to mention there’s 27.2 grams of protein per serving! It also utilizes the ultimate Paleo spice, turmeric.
Recipe: Keto Diet App | Paleo Sardine Stuffed Avocado
8. Mushrooms Stuffed with Ground Turkey + Spinach
There’s also a good amount of iron in this recipe due to the deep-green spinach. It’s simple and only takes seven ingredients to make.
Recipe: Table for Two | Mushrooms Stuffed with Ground Turkey and Spinach
9. Melon + Prosciutto Summer Salad
This is a great lunch for the hot months. Filled with melons, berries, and herbs, this salad gets its protein from its salty prosciutto.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Melon and Prosciutto Summer Salad
10. Mango Crab + Avocado Salad
Look at the colors on this recipe! Not only are the colors diverse, but the flavors are too. It’s sweet, sour, creamy, meaty, and crunchy.
Recipe: The Suburban Soapbox | Mango Crab and Avocado Salad
11. Brussels Sprouts, Blueberries + Bacon Salad
Bacon makes everything better, and in this case, it makes your daily protein levels go up! This salad offers a touch of bitterness, slight sweetness, and some salty heartiness. It’s easy to make—and easy to eat. It also packs walnuts for extra protein too!
Recipe: Stupid Easy Paleo | Brussels Sprouts, Blueberries, and Bacon Salad
12. Paleo Egg Salad
Eggs always offer a great helping of protein. And who doesn’t like a tasty egg salad sandwich (or just a bowl of the stuff, for that matter)? This recipe only has six ingredients too!
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Paleo Egg Salad
13. Taco Salad
Tacos are great for dinner, but when you remove the shells it makes one of the best salads in existence. Load up on the veggies and add a little Paleo Catalina dressing for some added flavor.
Recipe: Paleo Leap | Taco Salad
14. Cold Nordic Shrimp Salad
Get a triple serving of protein with the Nordic shrimp, hard-boiled eggs, and walnuts in this recipe.
Recipe: The Healthy Foodie | Cold Nordic Shrimp Salad
15. Char-Grilled Salmon with Avocado, Cucumber + Dill Salad
This four-ingredient salad comes with a side of salmon too. If you want to add the salmon to the salad, slice it up and mix it in!
Recipe: Woman and Home | Char Grilled Salmon with Avocado, Cucumber, and Dill Salad
16. Paleo Salmon Slaw
Salmon slaw is a great recipe to whip together to share during a friendly luncheon or even just for yourself. Add a slice of Paleo bread on the side if you want to make it a little heartier.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Paleo Salmon Slaw
17. Shawarma Chicken Bowls
Here’s a wonderfully spiced Indian take on salad. Curry, cumin, and coriander bring all the flavors here. Some Paleo-friendly naan is also a delicious addition!
Recipe: The Iron You | Shawarma Chicken Bowls
18. Fattoush Salad
Fattoush salad is a yummy Middle Eastern classic. This recipe adds some chicken for additional protein and seasons up with traditional Middle Eastern herbs to get those old world flavors.
Recipe: Cooking Glory | Fattoush Salad
19. Rainbow Turkey Salad
Bring your lunch up a notch with this fresh salad made with juicy, herb-roasted turkey breast and a rainbow of nutritious veggies!
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Rainbow Turkey Salad
20. Chilled Cucumber Soup with Hemp Oil
Who knew that hemp boasted so much protein? This cold soup pairs well with a small salad and also works well on its own for a light lunch.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Chilled Cucumber Soup with Hemp Oil
21. Paleo Pho
Pho is a light soup that is both a great lunch and dinner recipe. It’s also an amazing idea for colder months when soup provides a warm, comfy meal.
Recipe: Rubies and Radishes | Paleo Pho
22. Chicken Vegetable Soup
It’s the perfect lunch for a rainy day. Either add a small side salad or some Paleo bread as a side dish. This dish also includes apple cider vinegar, which is great for flushing out toxins from your body.
Recipe: Paleo on a Budget | Chicken Vegetable Soup
23. The Best Leftover Turkey Soup
Have some turkey leftovers you don’t know what to do with? Make it into a flavorful soup! It also offers sweet potato for added heartiness and mushrooms for an extra protein boost!
Recipe: PaleoHacks | The Best Leftover Turkey Soup
24. Paleo Gizzards Soup
Chicken gizzard soup is a different take on the classic chicken noodle we all know and love. Pair this warm and delicious soup with some hearty biscuits, and this becomes a great lunch for the winter months.
Recipe: Paleo Porn | Paleo Gizzards Soup
Sandwiches + Handhelds
25. Rainbow Kale Rolls
This versatile recipe lives up to its name because it’s filled with colorful veggies. Either follow the recipe or add your crunchy favorites.
Recipe: Eat Drink Paleo | Rainbow Kale Rolls
26. Paleo Italian Sub Roll-up
It’s an Italian sub without the bread! Imagine the protein you’ll get with turkey, ham, and salami in the mix. Don’t forget the pepperoncini’s for an extra kick of heat!
Recipe: Primal Bites | Paleo Italian Sub Roll Up
27. Paleo Chicken Salad Wraps
Yup, this delicious recipe is 100 percent Paleo! There’s also a hit of extra flavor from the Creole seasoning added in the chicken salad. Add some kale chips on the side for added crunch!
Recipe: Bravo for Paleo | Paleo Chicken Salad Wraps
28. Paleo Steak + Avocado Roll-up
A Paleo wrap, steak, guacamole, and butter leaf lettuce are the only ingredients involved here. Add a little Paleo hot sauce if you’re looking for even more flavor!
Recipe: Fitness in an Evolutionary Direction | Paleo Steak and Avocado Roll-Up
29. Cauliflower “Bagel” BLT
A BLT is always a yummy lunch idea, but when you put it on a Paleo-friendly bagel, a new delicious dimension is added. Top your bagel with poppy seeds, sesame seeds, or even dried herbs.
Recipe: The Iron You | Cauliflower “Bagel” BLT
30. Chicken Lettuce Wraps
A Paleo hoisin sauce provides the perfect sauce to dip your crunchy lettuce wraps!
Recipe: We Got Real | Chicken Lettuce Wraps
31. Bell Pepper Sandwich
Bell pepper actually acts as the bread in this recipe. Both bacon and turkey give this ruby red sandwich a great serving of protein during lunchtime.
Recipe: Fast Paleo | Bell Pepper Sandwich
32. Banh Mi Cucumber Subs
Isn’t it great that cucumbers are shaped the same as a French baguette? All of the classic Banh Mi flavors are present in this recipe, along with a creamy Sriracha mayo sauce.
Recipe: Get Inspired Everyday | Banh Mi Cucumber Subs
33. Portabella Sandwich Stack
Portabella mushrooms are a great source of protein and are also an amazing substitute for burger buns. Load this sandwich high with bacon, chicken, tomato, spinach, and guacamole, and then make some sweet potato chips (or any veggie chip) as a side.
Recipe: Multiply Delicious | Portabella Sandwich Stack
34. Paleo Sushi
Swapping avocado in place of rice is a genius way to make sushi Paleo-friendly. Pickle some veggie noodles for a tasty side dish too.
Recipe: Paleo Magazine | Paleo Sushi
35. Paleo Turkey Wraps
Turkey gets wrapped up in collard greens and seasoned with pecan hummus and mustard. Stick with the recommended veggies, or add the ones you like best. Cucumber or jimica are fun swaps.
Recipe: Fed & Fit | Paleo Turkey Wraps
36. Paleo Corn Dog Muffins
Bite-sized corn dogs are much easier to make than the standard corn dog. Instead of frying like the traditional recipe, these are baked. They are also a delicious crowd pleaser.
Recipe: Jay’s Baking Me Crazy | Paleo Corn Dog Muffins
37. Pizza Frittata
This pizza recipe offers multiple sources of protein. It’s also made in a cast-iron skillet, so you know the flavors will be amazing. Add your favorite toppings, or stick with tomato and pepperoni.
Recipe: Against All Grain | Pizza Frittata
38. Keto Low Carb Creamy Shrimp + Bacon Skillet
If you’re looking for a filling lunch, a meaty skillet will do the trick. This recipe is surf and turf at its very finest, and it’s creamy too.
Recipe: The Nourished Caveman | Keto Low Carb Creamy Shrimp and Bacon Skillet
39. Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
A loaded sweet potato provides the perfect portion size for lunch. The stuffing here is a great mix of greens and meats, so you’ll get a bunch of essential nutrients along with a full serving of protein too.
Recipe: Against All Grain | Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
40. Paleo Mexican Tacos
Here’s a light version of tacos, as butter lettuce acts as the traditional hard shell. Make your favorite salsa to top off these crunchy treats.
Recipe: Thank You Honey | Paleo Mexican Tacos
41. Protein Shake
A protein shake is an easy way to get the protein you are looking for quickly. When you’re in a bind, blend your favorite flavor combinations, and drink your protein easily.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Protein Shake