Nurse Lifestyle

20 Quick and Easy Packable Lunches for Nurses

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These lunches for nurses are precisely what you need to keep your energy high and satisfy your taste buds. Hopefully, you’ll have your full break to devour them.

Whether working in an office or on the floor, whenever it comes time to decide on what to bring for lunch, I unmistakably lack inspiration or motivation. Nutritious meals are a must for nurses! I always end up bringing the same sandwich or simple salad and frankly I grew tired of it. More often than I would like to admit, I found myself bringing a nondescript frozen meal that likely has a day’s worth of sodium as the main ingredient. I would love to have more options that are both healthy and easy to prepare. I did some research and found a lot of different lunches for nurses that either requires a little preparation the night before or can be made and ready the morning (or evening) before a shift.

colorful food in meal prep container
healthy lunch for nurses in a meal prep container

Quick and Easy Packable Lunches for Nurses

At lunch, you need something hearty, but not heavy. Healthy meals are imperative to thrive during 12-hour shifts. It should be nutritious and easy to eat. It also should stay on the fridge and the microwave. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite easy lunch ideas for nurses so you can have some new and exciting meals to try and stop relying on the vending machine or raiding the patient pantry for graham crackers and peanut butter.

You should strive towards a balanced meal with a good protein source and a mix of healthy fats and slow-burning carbs. The night shift isn’t an excuse to forgo a healthy diet. You can find some new favorite recipes, make a meal prep day, and find some new favorite recipes.

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Salads

Who doesn’t love a good salad? Salads are a nurse’s best friend, because you can out a variety of textures and flavors all in one bite. Plus, bonus points that you don’t have to touch your meal with your hands. Who knows where they’ve been before lunch on any given shift. I love that salads don’t just come in the green leafy variety.

From chicken salad to pasta salad, there are so many great choices for a fast and easy lunch. I also love that salads are a great option for healthy lunches for nurses. You can really be sure to get in all that needed fiber and protein in a good salad.

Here are some great options that will tickle your tastebuds and excite you for your lunch break. So get that grocery list ready!

Sandwhiches and Wraps

You can’t make a list of lunches for nurses without including sandwiches and wraps. There are many great options we’ve listed , even including some low-carb lunches for nurses. I really like that some of these sandwhich ideas can be made from the leftovers from dinner the night before. That’s not just a Thanksgiving thing you know.

Try these unique sandwhich option lunches for nurses.

Soups and Chilis

There’s nothing better that a bowl of warm soup on a cold winter day. This category of lunches for nurses also gets bonus points because you don’t have to touch it. I love that there are so many options for hearty soups available.

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Everything Else

Feeling adventurous? Trying something a little more eclectic our more eclectic in these everything else options for lunches for nurses. You can’t just eat all brown rice and boiled chicken an expect to stay satisfied and keep those energy levels high.

Healthy Snacks for Nurses

Packing some easy to eat healthy snacks is a great idea to keep you satisfied between meals.

Lunches for Nurses Storage Solutions

Having a healthy and delicious lunch to take to work with you is fantastic, but what are you going to store it in? Here are some of my favorite nurse lunch bags and portable food storage options that are perfect for any busy nurse.

Rubbermaid LunchBlox Sandwich Kit

20 Quick and Easy Packable Lunches for Nurses

Don’t let the “sandwich” in the name fool you. This little beauty works great for hosting a variety of tasty dishes. I like that you get extra little compartments that stay assembled and upright thanks to the locking mechanism. All your meal components can have their own little homes and only come together when you are good and ready. Pick up yours on Amazon.

PackIt Freezable Lunch Bag with Zip Closure

20 Quick and Easy Packable Lunches for Nurses

The PackIt is probably one of the coolest (pun intended) lunch boxes you can get. Your food will be sure to stay fresh and safe from germs and bacteria that could potentially set in if your meal were to rest at room temperature. Even if you have access to a fridge at work, it’s always nice to have this pack to keep your meal cool on the commute and in case you’re working fridge cleanout day. You can pick up yours in a variety of colors on Amazon.

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3 Compartment Stackable Meal Prep Containers

3 Compartment Stackable Meal Prep Containers

If you want to get your meal prep out of the way once a week, then these containers are just right for you. They are stackable, durable, and have compartments to keep your food from touching until you are good and ready. They are reusable, microwavable, dishwasher safe, and come with a lifetime guarantee. You can pick up yours on Amazon.

Human Organ for Transplant Insulated Lunch Tote

Human Organ for Transplant Insulated Lunch Tote

One of my best nursing friends (who happens to be a fantastic flight nurse), uses this very lunch box. I can only imagine the laughs and joy it brings whenever she pulls this sucker out of the fridge or when a new employee happens to catch a glance of it for the first time. Food should be fun, and I like when it extends to your lunch box as well. You can pick up your own transplant tote on Amazon.

Also, in case you are curious, there is such a thing as a Mini Personal Portable Oven, and I had a really hard time not buying one.

Meal Prepping is a Must

If you want to ensure you have a tasty meal during your break, you will have to do some meal prep. I have a great article on meal prep tips for nurses that can help you save time and eat healthy. My friend Kati, at FreahRN wrote a great article on how to meal plan for nurses and healthy eating for nurses.

What are your favorite lunches for nurses to take to work?

What do you carry your lunch in?

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