Tired of feeling drowsy after lunch? Give you heart and body a heart-healthy boost of nutrients that will fuel you throughout the rest of your day.
American Heart Association Recipe
Minestrone soup is a perfect, healthy, versatile lunch filled with your favorite veggies. Below is the AHA’s healthier version of the soup, swapping out regular pasta or rice for whole grain pasta and reducing sodium.
- 1 medium yellow onion peeled and chopped
- 4 medium carrots chopped (makes about 2 cups)
- 5 sliced celery sticks (makes 2 cups)
- 2 cups green beans chopped
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasons with no salt added
- 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 no salt added, diced tomatoes
- 1 can salt free kidney beans
- 1 can salt free chickpeas
- 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 chopped zucchini
- 1 cup chopped spinach
- 1 cup whole wheat pasta
- 2 teaspoons canola oil
- 1 cup chopped parsley, for garnish
1. Add all the chopped vegetables into a four quart bowl or larger slow cooker. Pour in Italian blend, garlic powder, salt, and pepper and stir.
2. Pour the drained canned tomatoes, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, chicken broth, and bay leaves but do not stir. Keep the vegetables at the bottom closer to the heat source so they can cook thoroughly. Cover with lid and cook 5 hours on high or 10 hours on low.
3. Thirty minutes before serving, remove bay leaves then stir. Add chopped zucchini and spinach to bowl. Cover and let cook on high heat.
4. Prepare the pasta according to package directions.
5. When the soup is finished cooking, pour into bowls, top with parsley and enjoy a heart health lunch!
Kale Turkey Wrap
Sandwiches and wraps are some of the most popular lunches, so it can be difficult to avoid bread on your lunch break. Although whole grain bread has its benefits, it can sit heavy in your stomach after lunch. Try swapping the bread out for kale leaves for a light, but filling lunch.
Recipe from Eating Well
- 1 tablespoon cranberry sauce
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 3 medium kale leaves
- 3 slices deli turkey of your choice
- 6 thin red onion slices
- 1 firm ripe pear, cut into 9 slices
1. Mix cranberry sauce and mustard in a small bowl. Spread on kale leaves.
2. Top each leaf with a slice of turkey, 2 slices of red onion and 3 slices of pear.
3. Roll each leaf into a wrap.
4. Serve and enjoy!
Makes 3 wraps
Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Salad
- Recipe from Eating Well
Quinoa is high in protein but low in calories, making it a great replacement for rice or other high-carb grains, especially for people with diabetes, according to Medline. Quinoa boosts your good cholesterol and will leave you feeling satisfied after your lunch break.
- Cooking spray
- 1 small zucchini cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 cup halved mushrooms
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup quinoa
- ¼ cup white-wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
- 1 teaspoon chopped oregano
- 1 teaspoon mustard
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 ounce semisoft goat cheese or reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled
1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly coat a shallow baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Add zucchini and mushrooms and lightly coat with cooking spray and ¼ teaspoon of the salt and the pepper. Cover and roast for 10 to 15 minutes or more until vegetables are just tender.
3. While the veggies are roasting, add water, quinoa, and the remaining ⅛ teaspoon salt in a saucepan. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer covered, for 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender then drain if necessary.
4. Combine vinegar, olive oil, parsley, rosemary, oregano, mustard, and garlic and mix well to create the vinaigrette. Add vinaigrette to cooled vegetable mixture and toss to coat.
5. Top the quinoa with the vegetable mixture and add the cheese.
6. You can also add chicken or fish for an extra boost of protein!