Have you become bored with your usual low carb lunches? Or maybe you are simply eating more low carb meals, even though you aren’t following a strictly low carb lifestyle. Even if you aren’t cutting carbohydrates, lunches can become less than exciting. Instead of settling for another mundane midday meal, give the following low carb lunch recipes a try. Each serving has fewer than 400 calories and is so delicious, you won’t miss the carbs.
Quick low carb lunch ideas
A delectable low carb lunch can keep your midday hunger at bay and give you the energy you need to power through your afternoon. Here are a few quick and simple low carb recipe ideas for lunch. Basic calorie contents have been provided.
- Hard-cooked eggs are easy to tote to work or on picnics and provide the staying power of protein. They make excellent low carb snacks, too. If you need some crunch, partner eggs with low carb crackers or mix with mayonnaise and spread on a piece of low carb toast or tortilla. One large egg is about 80 calories.
- Tuna salad composed of mayonnaise, diced celery, shredded carrot, grape halves, fresh minced herbs and your favorite seasoning makes a satisfying meal with many textures and tastes. For a change, try cooked salmon or another fish instead of tuna. One (6-ounce) can of solid white albacore packed in water is about 170 calories.
- Cubes of cheese paired with toasted nuts and olives (or a modest serving of fruit) becomes a simple gourmet lunch, especially if you enjoy it with a small glass of wine. One ounce of hard cheese is about 100 calories, one ounce of nuts is about 160 calories, and four large olives have 25 calories.
- low carb wraps, using dark leafy greens or low carb tortillas to hold low carb fillings, are versatile and give you near endless variations. Try thinly sliced deli meats and cheese combinations, cream cheese spreads, and any number of vegetables or fruits (like avocados, tomatoes, or olives). Leafy greens have minimal calories and tortillas range from 60 to over 100 calories (read the labels).
- Cream cheese dips can be mixed with fresh herbs, garlic, roasted red peppers, and olives as well as berries or even smoked salmon for a flavorful array of dips or spreads that can be eaten with cut vegetables or low carb chips, crackers, or miniature toasts. One ounce of cream cheese has about 100 calories.
Give these low carb recipes a try when you have a little more time in the kitchen.
Low carb gazpacho with avocado
Gazpacho is a chilled soup that is especially satisfying on a hot summer day. It is naturally high in vitamins and minerals and low in carbohydrates. This entire low carb recipe has about 200 calories, not counting the avocado.
- 1 cup finely diced peeled cucumber
- 1 cup finely chopped green peppers
- 1 cup finely diced, seeded tomato
- 1 cup finely diced celery
- 1/4 cup minced onion
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh flat leaf parsley
- 2 cups tomato juice
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce or more to taste
- Zest, minced and juice from a lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
- Pinch of cayenne
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Diced avocado
- Mix all the vegetables, parsley, tomato juice, lemon zest and juice, and all the seasonings in a large bowl.
- Refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight to develop the flavors. Serve chilled, garnished with diced avocado.
Roast beef rollups
With the many meats and cheeses at most supermarket delis, you can have a different lunch every day of the week. Have your cheese thinly sliced so it will be easier to roll. And experiment with different leafy greens, such as Bibb, radicchio, or spinach. One roast beef rollup has about 70 calories.
- 16 (1-ounce each) slices of roast beef
- 4 ounces very thinly sliced Muenster or provolone cheese
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 16 romaine lettuce leaves
- Lay the slices of roast beef flat on a cutting board. And evenly divide the cheese among the slices.
- Mix together mayonnaise and mustard and spread on cheese. Top each with a lettuce leaf and roll up. Lay on a serving plate seam-side down.
Chicken salad with crumbled boursin
Boursin is an all-natural Gournay cheese (named after a small town in France) with fewer than one carbohydrate per serving that comes in a delicious variety of flavors. It adds unparalleled flavor and a creamy contrast to the tender roasted pepper, crisp carrot, and diced chicken. One of these satisfying salads has about 350 calories, without dressing.
- 6 cups mixed greens
- 1 cup sliced roasted red bell peppers (from a jar)
- 1 cup shredded carrot
- 8 ounces cooked skinless chicken breast, diced
- 8 tablespoons Garlic and Roasted Red Pepper Boursin cheese
- Your favorite low carb salad dressing
- Divide greens among four salad bowls. In a mixing bowl, combine peppers, carrot, and chicken and toss to combine.
- Evenly divide chicken mixture among the four salads. Top with crumbled Boursin and drizzle with dressing.
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