Thanks to crazy weekday schedules, lunch is often as neglected as breakfast. Add the pressure of toting a homemade Whole30-friendly dish to work—and it can seem easier to just say “eff it” and forego lunch hour altogether.
But since skipping meals isn’t the best idea, we want to make sure you can fuel up properly without straying from the program. Take your pick from the dishes below.
This take on loaded fries may not be an exact replica of the popular pub lunch, but you may find you actually prefer it to the original. Replacing dairy with the heart-aiding fatty acids of guac and throwing romaine lettuce in for some extra vitamins, the Whole30-compliant update is incredibly fresh-tasting and won’t send you into food coma.Hass+avocado+composition+and+potential+health+effects.+Dreher+ML,+Davenport+AJ.+Critical+reviews+in+food+science+and+nutrition,+2013,+Dec.;53(7):1549-7852.
The starchier cousin of bananas, plantains are available at most grocery stores, but if you can’t find them, sweet potatoes work just as well here. They take the place of tortilla chips, but topped with a generous mound of spiced lean turkey, they still pack all the flavors of traditional nachos.
While many Whole30 chicken salads rely on a homemade mayonnaise, not all of us have the time, patience, or means to whisk up raw eggs with an immersion blender. Instead, try this mayo-free rendition, which gets its creamy texture from avocado and some Mexican flair from a few simple spices.
Sometimes you just need a good burger for lunch. And while there are plenty of healthy recipes out there, many use condiments that aren’t Whole30 friendly. Satisfy that craving the clean-eating way with this version.
With all the ground turkey and veggies going on, this is more like a chunky stew than a soup. It may be a bit more chopping and simmering than what you’re used to in the middle of the day, but that’s exactly why this is such a perfect recipe to make on a weekend and have on hand for a no-brainer lunch all week.
We’re used to seeing asparagus bundled in bacon, but these roll-ups go for a lower-cholesterol protein, using salmon to wrap around the green spears and crisp bell pepper slices. Slightly broiled, these dainty little parcels can liven up your lunch break.
Proving again that you don’t need mayo to make deli salads delicious, this recipe subs in mashed avocado to get the same creamy feel but with many more healthy fats and fiber. Scooped into romaine leaves, this salad is better than the original in taste, nutrition, and presentation too!
Poached salmon may sound bland at first glance, but this recipe is anything but. Simmered with chopped herbs, lemon, and garlic, the filet literally soaks up their fragrances and flavors. It’s one of the easiest ways to make the tastiest fish dish.
Struggling with adding taste to dishes without dairy or sugar? Let Asian flavors come to the rescue. This recipe shows you how, using herbs like lemongrass and coriander for a fresh, clean dressing. It may become your new go-to long after you’re done with the Whole30.
If you’re using preboiled shrimp, this no-cooking-required salad comes together in just a few minutes. With sharp red onion and cool avocado chunks accompanying the shellfish, the ingredients here make for a light but nutrient-dense meal.
A colorful way to break up your workday, this taco salad puts just as much emphasis on including a variety of produce as it does on the meat. The best part? There’s so much to enjoy here that you don’t even a need to whisk up a dressing. Just a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon will do the trick.
If you’re short on time but want a hot meal, this quick, four-ingredient recipe should be right up your alley. A fast 5 to 10 minute saute lets the kale and bell peppers retain their crispiness (plus many of their antioxidants) while making sure the meat is browned to perfection.
It only takes five ingredients to make seven juicy beef burgers for each day of the week—just check your bacon’s label to make sure it’s Whole30 approved. Quick to put together, cost-efficient, and freezable, these patties will make your life easier—and lunchtime yummier.
When you want a satisfying, healthy, and easy-to-make option for a quick lunch that’ll last a few days, quiche never disappoints. This one goes above and beyond in nutrition and taste, packing in plenty of produce alongside the meat, and including a simple sweet potato base for that crust-like crunch.
No need to fight off those relentless pizza cravings while on the Whole30—make these muffins instead! Brimming with sausage (check that there’s no added sugar), sundried tomatoes, and roasted garlic, a couple of these portable bites will totally hit the spot.
Use the Whole30 experience to experiment with unique salad combinations like this one. Packed with sliced almonds, a whole sweet potato, apples, and an almond-butter dressing, it’s not only creative, but also packed with ingredients to keep you happily full for hours.
While pulsed cauliflower is usually used as a replacement for rice, here it takes the place of cracked wheat to recreate a traditional Lebanese dish the Whole30 way. Make it a night in advance to let the olive oil and herbs soak into the veggies, and you’ve got a flavorful lunch ready to pack the next day.
It’s hard not to look at the bright, happy colors in this sunny salad and not want to make it! Healthy fats dominate here, with almonds and avocado making for a creamy and crunchy contrast, while orange segments lift up the heavier ingredients with sweet, citrus juiciness.
Since dairy, beans, and soy aren’t permitted on the strict Whole30, herbivores can find getting enough protein to be a real challenge. If you’re one of them, try this egg salad paired with a mashed avocado “dressing.” It’s a step up in flavor and nutrition from plain old hardboiled eggs and doesn’t require homemade mayo.
There are zucchini fritters and sweet potato pancakes. And then there are these latkes, which are somewhere in between. Using equal amounts of both green and orange veggies, they give you the best of both worlds.