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Pack Tasty and Heart Healthy Lunches

January 24, 2011

As you send your family back to work and school after the holidays, you’ll probably want them to eat healthy, in order to make up for all the holiday indulgences. We found 22 healthy lunch ideas from Cooking Light.com that sound easy and delicious, too! They include:

  • Pack a heart healthy lunchA sandwich named Mr. Stripey with Tomato, Arugula, and Pancetta  
  • Curried Chicken Salad with Apples and Raisins
  • Little Italy Chicken Pitas
  • Blueberry-Orange Parfaits
  • Tuna Pan Bagnat
  • Southwestern Chicken Pasta Salad
  • Avocado Soup with Citrus-Shrimp Relish
  • Butterscotch Blondies

As well as healthy, helpful and educational tips like:

Smart Packing Tip: To prevent soggy sandwiches, pack separate zip-top bags of tomato slices, arugula, and bread, and then assemble the sandwiches just before eating. Toasting the bread before packing also helps keep everything crisp.

Prep Tip: Put leftovers to good use when preparing your lunches. Consider incorporating some of tonight’s dinner into tomorrow’s lunch. Slice leftover chicken or beef and serve it on top of pasta or salad greens, mix it into a grain salad, or make it into a sandwich.

Nutrition Tip: Fresh, whole fruit is your best option for sides and snacks during the day. Change things up by selected fruit that’s in season--you'll enjoy diverse flavors plus nutritional variety as your choices change naturally throughout the year. An apple, chilled grapes, or mango slices offer a great source of fiber, keeping you feeling fuller longer.

Nutrition Tip:  While avocados are high in fat, most of it is “heart healthy” mono- and polyunsaturated fat. One-fifth of a medium-sized avocado has about 50 calories. Not bad considering these versatile fruits are nutrient-rich, containing nearly 20 vitamins and minerals. As long as you use moderation as your guide, avocados are a very nutritious and tasty addition to sandwiches, salads and dips.