I came up with these Healthy Wrap Ideas because I wanted easy lunches that I could bring with me. I needed lunches I could eat that didn’t require utensils or need to be warmed up.
I’m a carb junkie so whenever I have to tighten up my diet to drop a few pounds, I am very resistant to giving them up. This sacrifice hits me hardest at lunch where most of my quickest, portable option (a MUST for me on most days) is a sandwich.
Thankfully, I’ve found a number of wrap recipes that allow me to enjoy the same great flavors and convenience of sandwiches with fewer calories and more fiber. If I’m really being tight with my diet, I can substitute lettuce for the tortilla and still enjoy portability and great taste.
I’m not the only one who appreciates this lunch option. It turns out the kids also enjoy this variation on their typical sandwich.
They, more than I, appreciated the ability to load up on sauces and condiments that normally make their sandwich bread too soggy. I have also noticed that we all load wraps up with more vegetables than we do our sandwiches, either because a “crunch” factor is essential in a wrap or because it’s easier to roll the veggies into a wrap as opposed to layering them into a flat layer on a sandwich.
Healthy Wrap Basics
I have found several delicious wrap recipes, but before we get to those, I’m going to give you a simple formula for putting one together using things you already have in your refrigerator so that you can see how easy it is to whip one up for lunch next time you want something quick AND healthy.
Choose your wrap
Tortilla – If you are watching your weight, I recommend La Tortilla Factory’s Smart & Delicious Original. It’s whole grain and only 50 calories per tortilla. Otherwise, if you just want to choose a healthy option, corn and whole wheat tortillas are both whole grain and are good choices. And read the ingredient labels of the vegetable colored tortillas because they don’t always contain vegetables and can be much higher in fat and calories than a plain tortilla.
Lettuce – If you choose iceburg or romaine, you will need to overlap and double up leaves to prevent tearing and spillage. Endive leaves are very sturdy and will work if you want to make a boat, but may crack if you roll them. Cabbage leaves are also sturdy, and more pliable. Collard greens will work almost exactly like a tortilla. Other people swear by Bibb lettuce or butter head lettuce.
Choose your sauce
- Cream cheese
- Greek yogurt
Choose your protein
- Deli meat
- Strips of chicken or flank steak
- Shredded beef, pork, or chicken
- Fish (e.g. tilapia, cod, salmon, or tuna)
- Eggs (e.g. sliced hard-boiled eggs or egg salad)
Choose your toppings
- Lettuce or Spinach Leaves
- Sliced Onion
- Sliced Green Pepper
- Sliced Mushrooms
- Sliced Cucumber
- Diced Tomatoes or Cherry Tomatoes
- Sliced Olives
- Grated Carrots
- Raisins or Craisins
- Chopped Nuts
Choose your dressing
- Honey Mustard
To roll your tortilla wrap, fold in both the left and right sides of the tortilla toward the center. Fold the bottom half of the tortilla up and over the fillings (making sure to keep the sides folded in).
Roll the tortilla slowly towards the top edge, squeezing slightly as you do to ensure a tight wrap. If desired, rub a small amount of whatever sauce you used as the base of your wrap to the top edge of the tortilla before you seal it to keep it from unwrapping. Cut wrap in half using a serrated knife. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap if you aren’t eating it immediately.
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To roll your lettuce wrap, you will follow almost the same procedure as the tortilla wrap with the exception that you may need to layer extra lettuce leaves on the sides before you begin to wrap to hold all the ingredients in. You can also skip the wrapping and simply place a small pile of your toppings in the middle of the lettuce leaf and eat it like a soft taco.
Healthy Wrap Recipes
If you are willing to put a little more time and effort into your lunch wrap, here are some delicious alternatives.
- Chicken BLT Wraps with Aioli – a flavor-rich version of a classic wrap, substitute crumbled, crisp turkey bacon for the bacon bits to reduce the fat and calories
- Thai Peanut Chicken Wrap – your favorite Thai flavors, all wrapped up in an easy to eat-on-the-run package
- Summer Wrap – chicken, apples, grapes, honey and almond butter all wrapped up in lettuce; filling, tasty, and healthy
- Buffalo Chicken Wrap – same great flavor of buffalo chicken wings but much better for you (though you’ll still need to have a stack of napkins handy)
- Grilled Veggie and Hummus Wrap – a yummy vegetarian wrap with tons of fresh summer veggies
- Raspberry Chipotle Turkey Wraps with Brie and Roasted Garlic – gourmet taste with very little effort, a wonderful warm wrap for a fall or winter day
- California Wrap – one of the most popular sushi rolls translated into a wrap
- Asian Lettuce Wrap – ditch the tortilla and enjoy this healthier version of those popular asian wraps at a well-known restaurant chain.
- Southwestern Chicken Wrap – all your favorite Tex-Mex flavors in an easy to assemble wrap
- Shrimp Avocado Wrap – you can swap out the wrap for a corn tortilla and enjoy this as a shrimp taco, but no matter how you hold it–it’s delicious
Do you have your own favorite wrap recipe that isn’t shown here? If so, please share it in the comments!