15 easy, healthy lunch ideas that don’t involve sandwiches

warm pea & tahini salad

Before discovering the whole paleo or ‘primal’ eating philosophy, and going (mostly) grain-free, sandwiches were my go-to lunch.

Especially when I was heavily into my sourdough bread baking phase.

It’s been a long time since I last had a sandwich for lunch. And the thing is, I don’t really miss them. There are so many other quick healthy lunch options.

So if you’re trying to eat gluten-free or even if you’re keen to break out of your own ‘sandwich rut’, here are 15 ideas for healthy bread-free lunches.

portable lunches

Perfect for when you need to be able to make lunch in advance, even the night before and take it with you.
1. raw broccoli salad
2. carrot ribbon salad with pesto and cashews
3. butter bean & tuna salad
4. boiled eggs with curried chickpeas
5. chickpea & parmesan salad [skip the leaves]

lunches to make in the office

Most offices have some sort of ‘kitchenette’ with at least a sink and a microwave. Why not make the most of it and cook lunch at the office. Much cheaper than going out AND a great little break from the stress of the day.
6. tomato, almond & pesto salad
7. washing up-free salad
8. mixed sprout & avocado salad
9. tuna & white bean salad
10. the triple ‘s’ salad
11. green chickpea salad

quick hot lunches

Especially in the cooler months, a warm lunch can give a real boost to your day. Most of these don’t require a proper kitchen.
12. white bean & tomato soup
13. chickpea ‘kettle soup’
14. broccoli & parmesan soup
15. warm chickpea salad with rosemary & garlic

What about you? Got any favourite quick healthy lunches you’d like to share? Drop in to the comments below and share!

warm pea & tahini salad

Warm Pea & Tahini Salad

serves 2

It took me years to overcome my childhood fear of frozen peas. I’ve found the secret is to make sure you don’t overcook them. All they need is a quick soak in boiling water to defrost.

4 handfuls frozen peas
2 tablespoons lemon juice
sm bunch mint, leaves picked & chopped
2 generous handfuls almonds
3-4 tablespoons tahini

1. Pop the kettle on to boil. Place peas in a heatproof bowl.

2. Cover with boiling water and stand for 2-3 minutes or until peas are defrosted and bright green.

3. Drain peas and pat dry with paper towel. Drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil. Squeeze over lemon. Season.

4. Toss in mint and almonds.

5. Serve with tahini spooned on top.

nut-free – replace almonds with chunks of avocado

sesame-free – replace tahini with a few handfuls of grated parmesan or chunks of goats cheese or feta.

carnivore – replace almonds with finely sliced salami, proscuitto or shredded chicken.

fresh peas – by all means use fresh podded peas instead of frozen. Or skip the boiling water and try snow peas instead.

cold salad – allow peas to defrost for 15 minutes or so before using them in the salad. Skip the boiling water step.

video version of the recipe


recently on the stonesoup diaries

§ mastering the art of [kitchen] improvisation
§ 5 lessons from ‘a homemade life’
§ summer ‘slaw – possibly a worlds first!
§ ever wished you could cook like the (former) best chef in the world?
§ buttermilk dressing

Jules x

ps. Looking for easy, healthy dinner ideas?
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Then Check out the Tired & Hungry Cook’s Companion over here:


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