Does Healthy Lunch Ideas for Busy Moms sound like an oxymoron? For this mom, trying to raise my large family taking care of me can sometimes be an afterthought!
Are you eating lunch while you read this? If so, what’s on your plate? Do you even have a plate? Or are you standing over a sink inhaling the scraps of ingredients you used to prep lunches for your family? Yeah. I thought so.
Healthy Lunch Ideas for Busy Moms
I know that as a mom your lunch sucks. I know that because since entering mommyhood, my lunch often does too. Not my kids’ lunch though, goodness no! While my kids eat customized happy meals that I lovingly design with their specific tastes and food preferences in mind, I often graze on the leftover individually wrapped cheese strings, granola bars, and un-eaten apple slices. I routinely make “salads” with fruits and vegetables that didn’t get eaten by the kids because “they looked weird.”
Striving to find healthy lunch ideas when you’re a busy mom can be tough.
I tell myself, “it’s not so bad, it saves me time,” and that I’m being fiscally responsible for not letting the weird looking food go to waste. But, deep down, I know it’s rather sad to fuel my kids’ primary caregiver’s nutritional needs from the discards of my kid’s lunches. Not just because it isn’t always the healthiest combination of food choices for my body, but because my kids deserve a caregiver who is treated better than that. Plus, my kids need to learn to eat the food that’s been given to them, and not wait for a better option to come along.
So, in the spirit of taking care of myself, I have embarked on lunch ideas for me. I hope you, good momma, use these ideas to provide yourself with the same loving care that you provide for your family. Put your needs on the same pedestal that your families needs are put on. You deserve it!
Lunches that go on a plate? Remember those? Here are a few ideas that are quick, tasty, mom-favored lunch ideas that are best served on an actual plate!
- Leftover Love. Make your lunch the night before by cooking up a few extra servings at dinner time. Then, put a portion right into a lunch container (or on a plate if you’re a SAHM) and be ready for lunch the next day. Often, we put much more attention into dinner prep than lunch prep, so why not benefit from that effort over the span of multiple meals? I love these glass bento boxes they are easy to heat up food and to clean. For my kiddos, I stick with BPA safe plastic!
- Spin a Salad. Lunchtime salads are so tasty, fresh, and energizing that it’s hard to ignore them as a staple lunch option. An easy way to create quick salads is to keep bagged salads from the grocery store on hand and add some protein and roasted veggies from the previous night’s dinner. Top it off with shredded cheese and other dashes of flavor, like nuts or seeds, and you have a restaurant quality salad bowl in no time.
While it’s best to eat lunch sitting down, at a table, with actual cutlery, it’s not always possible when you’re a busy mom trying to keep up with a large crowd of your own creation. So, while it’s not ideal, here are some ideas to get in a healthy lunch when the luxury of an actual lunch break isn’t possible.
- Keep it Smooth! Smoothies are healthy, quick to make, and full of the right nutrients to keep busy mom’s fueled. And, despite my earlier admonitions, smoothies are a fabulous way to use up fresh produce before it spoils.
- Wrap it Up. Flatbread wraps with deli meat, lettuce, cheese, and maybe even some avocado are great to eat when on the go. Handheld wraps stuffed with nutrient dense fillings can keep a mom’s energy up when stopping is not an option. Sounds delicious huh? See finding healthy lunch ideas for busy moms isn’t as hard as you thought!
Snacks Are Not Bad
Some days, eating lunch is just not going to happen for busy mom’s, especially SAHM’s with very young children that need constant attention from their mother’s hands. On those days, sometimes the best a mom can do to get through is to snack smartly and snack often. It’s never a bad idea to have healthy snacks on hand, some of which could be:
- Fresh produce. Snack freely on fruits and vegetables. They’ll provide you with the same benefits they give your kids. Nutrition, energy, and fiber. It’s all in there.
- Nuts and Cheese. Options like nuts and cheese will keep the hangry urges at bay, helping to give mommas patience in less than ideal discussions with your toddler.
- Whole grains. Whole grain snacks, like energy bites that aren’t loaded in sugar, are perfect for moms to fuelling up for a long-haul errand run with kids. Remember to pack some mom-only snacks in with the ones you’re undoubtedly packing for your kids. You can throw in adorable lunch box notes for your kiddos too.
Healthy lunches for busy moms are just as important as healthy lunches for the kids. Don’t forget to add your favorite lunch snack items to the grocery shopping list too!
Stay Well Good Momma’s and enjoy all the different options for healthy lunches for your busy mom lifestyle.