Workday lunches can be such a drag. They’re so darn expensive, the quality can be questionable, and half the time you end up at same few spots near your office—boring! But packing a lunch can feel time-consuming, especially when you’re running around getting ready in the morning.

Here are three delicious recipes that can be made the night before, so they’re ready to grab on your way out the door. You can control the ingredients, they’re healthy and well-balanced, and all of these recipes are super speedy to prepare. It’s the perfect combination to help get you through a hectic workday.


1. Not-Your-Average Turkey Sandwich

I know, there’s nothing Earth-shattering about a turkey sandwich. But I’m guessing this is what you run out to buy half the time you go out for lunch, and the one you end up with is probably “just okay.” Am I right?

Well, with just a few minutes of prep this turkey sandwich will become a weekly staple in your lunch routine. It’s all about maximizing the flavor by upgrading the traditional ingredients with snazzier versions of themselves, and then adding in a surprise ingredient (apple!) that takes this sandwich to the next level.

  • 2 slices multigrain bread (I love Dave’s Killer Bread)
  • Chipotle mayo or spicy mustard (or both!)
  • 1 slice Havarti cheese
  • 1/2 apple, sliced very thin
  • 1 slice cooked bacon
  • 2 oz sliced oven-roasted turkey breast
  • 1 handful mixed greens

Do I really need to tell you how to make a sandwich? Probably not, but here you go. Take the sliced bread and spread with mayo and mustard on both sides. Start with layering the cheese on one slice, then the apple, then the bacon, then the turkey, and finish with the mixed greens. Top with the other slice of bread, cut in half, and wrap up for the next day. It’s especially yummy when served with salt and vinegar chips.


2. Spicy Chickpeas with Naan

My old roommate used to make this all the time, and it has become one of my favorite meals. It’s a great vegetarian dish, it’s amazing served warm or at room temperature, and it’s fun to eat since you get to layer up a piece of naan with Greek yogurt and the spicy chickpeas. I’m all for embracing your inner child by eating with your fingers—just don’t forget to pack a napkin!

  • 1 15-oz. can chickpeas
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tomato, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp curry powder
  • Naan and Greek yogurt for serving

Open the can of chickpeas and rinse and drain them with cold water. Set aside. Heat the oil over medium heat, then add the onion. Cook until the onion has browned, then add the tomato and chickpeas. Add the salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and curry powder, and cook for 15 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Bring to work for the next two days (or share with a co-worker!) with some torn naan bread and Greek yogurt.


3. Creamy Tomato Soup

So, you could always buy a can of tomato soup and heat it up at your office, but are you really going to look forward to that all day? I didn’t think so. This tomato soup takes less than 10 minutes to make and is so delicious and creamy you’ll be counting down the minutes until the clock strikes lunch.

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 15-oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 tbsp half and half
  • 1 small handful fresh basil (optional)

Heat the olive oil over medium heat, then add the can of crushed tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Cook for approximately five minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and mix in the half and half. If you have fresh basil on hand, throw in a small handful, then transfer to a food processor or blender, and blitz until smooth. Take to work in a microwave-safe container and serve with a crusty bread roll.


Read More: 52 Creative (and Easy!) Ideas for Lunch at Work That'll Make Everyone Jealous


Updated 6/19/2020