Man Up Your Lunch – Packed Lunch Box Ideas for Men

by on November 24, 2013 · 13 comments                       

packed lunch ideas for men│man up your lunch │

photo above courtesy of  OneCraftyThing

Manly Meals – when size counts

If you’re a man, or you have one to pack for, this post is for you.
You’ll find inspiration and links to packed meal ideas that are man-sized, husband-tested, and guy-friendly. Packed lunches are not just for kids!

Why pack?

“Packing homemade lunches for my husband Eric helps us stay within our monthly budget. For him to eat a decent, healthy lunch out is at least $15 per day! With EasyLunchboxes, we are able to re-purpose leftovers into lunch and pack his man-snacks for the day. This, of course, is a great example to our 3 children. They see dad bringing his homemade lunch to work, and they don’t question bringing theirs to school. Homemade lunches is what we do! By packing them fresh, it gives us the opportunity to talk about being less wasteful with our food and about prioritizing how and where we spend our money. By saving over $300 per month in not eating out for lunch, my husband is able to be a bit more relaxed about our finances. And that’s a good thing.”  – Laura of MOMables

Packed lunches for work

Alex, of Lunch with Eyeness sent me pics of husband Todd, enjoying his lunch break outside. “I don’t always take my lunch to work, but when I do, it’s in an EasyLunchbox.” – Todd

Take lunch to work │man up your lunch

“At work it’s me and the guys. We don’t get “real” breaks since we only overlap shifts by 5-10 minutes. We eat whenever we can and typically at our workstation. At least once a week we take turns making sure everyone gets fed. Sometimes we do delivery, but sometimes I pack up leftovers from home in EasyLunchboxes and leave them in the employee kitchen. Free food is always a good thing, even if it’s someone else’s leftovers! A.C. (pictured below) was in the midst of eating some of the beef and vegetables I had left when I came in tonight. He took the rest home with him and swears to bring the box back tomorrow (probably unwashed but that’s okay. The kitchen has a dishwasher!).” – Karen, What’s in our Lunch Bags

work station, meal station │ man up your lunch

I pack lunches and snacks for my husband Loren to take with him on the road. He’s an actor, and sometimes he’ll have multiple auditions in a day, driving all over Los Angeles. Sometimes he’ll eat out, but I much prefer to send him off with more than “break a leg!” That way, I know he’s well fed and not forced to do extra driving, in search of his next meal.

On the road? Take packed meals and snacks │man up your lunch

Beau Coffron, best known as LunchBoxDad, shared the below pic with me. “Eating left over chicken leg, cheese sticks, pretzel nuggets, assorted veggies. Also sporting the horrible mustache for “Movember” raising awareness and money to fight cancer.” (Personally, I think the mustache is decidedly “Cary Grant like” on him, and not even slightly horrible…) Check out Beau’s delish recipe for a filling  taco lunch.

LunchBox Dad packs lunch in EasyLunchboxes │man up your lunch

Stickin’ to a meal plan?

If you have allergies, or you’re sticking to any kind of dietary choices, restrictions, or meal plans, bringing your own food may be a necessity, or it just may be easier than searching for something “OK” to eat when you’re at work, or on the road. Corey of Family Fresh Meals packs vegetarian lunches for husband Darryl.

Pack meals in EasyLunchboxes for special diets │man up your lunch

Cold Pizza – ya gotta love it

Breakfast (or lunch!) of Champions

Cristi of Bent on Better Lunches sends her hubby off with this one regularly. Pictured below: Leftover pizza pieces, marinara for dipping, berries & melon balls, and a little MIL humor by Lunchbox Love.

Cold Pizza - breakfast of Champions - man up your lunch

Big Families, Big Eaters

Loads of ideas for hearty appetites on The Family Lunchbox’s Facebook Page:

Manly meal ideas from The Family Lunchbox packed in EasyLunchboxes

Leftovers for Lunch

“I hadn’t really considered packing lunches for my husband until I started cooking. Really cooking… Cans don’t count! Suddenly I was inundated with leftovers after every meal.

I get bored easily, and don’t like how reheating can change the texture and taste usually, so *I* don’t eat leftovers very often. And our girls certainly won’t, since I had to bribe and cajole them to choke down my apparently “blecchy” veggie-filled dinner in the first place! Suddenly packing lunch for my man seemed like a good idea!

And when he left a “catered lunch daily” job for a new one that only caters lunch once a week, I was practically shoving leftover-filled EasyLunchboxes at him. ‘I made you a lunch for tomorrow. It’s the one with the orange lid on the top of the stack on the middle shelf. Not the pink or yellow. Those are for the girls. Yours is ORANGE. If you take the wrong one I will hurt you. Love you. Have a nice day at work!’

He was half-convinced I was trying to poison him for the life insurance money, the way I was suddenly eager to pack lunches for him! But really, I was just grateful to have an outlet for all the leftovers I’m not a fan of!” – Kendra of Biting the Hand That Feeds You

Leftovers are an easy way to pack lunches for work │ man up your lunch

Deb of ipacklunch often makes ‘his and hers’ lunches for work.
Deb says, “My husband Jamie emails me at my office everyday after he eats his lunch and tells me thank you.” Now that is SWEET! :)
Click on the image below for the recipe (as well as the HER version of this lunch):

Leftovers for his lunch │man up your lunch

► ► MORE man-size leftovers to lunch box ideas from Deb
► ► Caprice has some excellent lunch box recipes on The Home Heart 
► ► More delicious, filling lunch box ideas like the one below are on The Roxx Box

Pack a New Orleans Po' Boy │man up your lunch

“Husband Jeff often makes ME lunch, but this time I beat him to it and packed this one for him: Chopped Baby Spinach Salad topped with diced carrots, broccoli slaw, diced green peppers, grape tomatoes, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries and crumbled goat cheese, all from Trader Joe’s. Crunchmaster’s Multi-seed Gluten-Free Crackers (I’m seriously addicted to these!) and Sabre’s Classic Hummus (we must eat like 50 lbs of hummus a year, at least!)”  – Christine of My Epicurean Adventures.

Work at home │man up your lunch

Go ahead, humor me

“I am very lucky to have a husband who humors me in the lunch-making department. He’ll take any shaped food, any picks, any designs, any boxes with nary a complaint.” – Shannon,

Go ahead, pack my lunch │man up your lunch

Husband – Tested Recipes

From Alice’s Kitchen of Husband Tested Recipes: the delicious lunch below features Spicy Walnut Lentil Burgers (with a little red onion and yogurt sauce to go with), Spicy Asian Ginger Slaw, and for dessert – Triple Chocolate Brownies (made with a secret ingredient which cuts back on the fat).

husband tested recipes for lunch boxes │man up your lunch

► Find more lunches for men HERE and HERE.
► See how much food you can pack in my EasyLunchboxes. Meals and snacks for a long day.

In the photo below, David, husband to Michelle who blogs over at Creative Food, is eating a ham and cheese sandwich with baby carrots and celery. “He always asks for cold lunches because he has a lot of virtual meetings and webinars that he is attending, so heating up his food isn’t always possible!”
(The man holding the sign is not David. He’s a model. A real man who packs lunch. Who wears the same clothes as David.)

real men pack lunch │

Inspired yet?

Real men pack lunch for work │ │man up your lunch

photo above courtesy of  OneCraftyThing

It’s not the size of the box, it’s what you put in it.” - Kendra Peterson

Pack lunches for work FAST in EasyLunchboxes

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1 Christine November 25, 2013 at 7:55 am

Wow, such a fun post, Kelly, filled with so many wonderful ideas on what to pack men for lunch! Seeing all these yummy lunches is really making me hungry right now! Thanks for including mine in this fabulous mix. <3
Christine is the cool author of..Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Brown Sugar ToppingMy Profile

2 Beau November 25, 2013 at 8:10 am

This is such a great article and timely too. Theres a ton guys can do with Thanksgiving leftovers! Thanks for all the ideas!

3 Amanda P November 25, 2013 at 10:44 am

Loved this post! Great to see all of the manly lunch ideas ^_^

4 Roxanne November 25, 2013 at 6:38 pm

Love this!! Now my man is HUNGRY!!
Roxanne is the cool author of..Grizzlies Brand ~ A Review Bento #132My Profile

5 Cara November 25, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Why is a ‘real man’ any more manly if a women packs his lunch for him? Why does he have to eat culturally stagnant foods like chicken, beef and carrots, ham sandwiches, etc. to be classified a ‘man’? Frankly, posts like these reinforce the ideology that women belong in the kitchen, and do not help to unify the stereotypical dichotomy between gender roles.

6 Kelly Lester November 26, 2013 at 7:34 am

Hi Cara – I never said that a man was more manly if he had a woman in the kitchen packing lunch for him. I’m not trying to lessen gender polarity here (and really, I kind of like that men and women are different), I’m just trying to share ideas for packed lunches for bigger appetites. If you do a search for lunch box ideas, you’ll find that the majority of posts focus on kids and school lunches, not packed meals for adults/men. Beau (pictured above) packed his own, but I can guarantee that he’s no more real than the other guys I highlighted ;)

7 Sandy May 28, 2014 at 7:19 pm

Please don’t be offended Cara, I just stumbled across this web site while looking for big lunch ideas for my husband. Since he works 12 hour shifts without complaint to put me through school, I will gladly put on the apron and get in the kitchen and make sure he is well fed!!! I absolutely believe in equality and when I finish my degree and start work, it will be his turn to decide what he wants to do for a future career, and I am quite positive that he will be more than happy to pack me a lunch while I go off to work to hopefully support his dreams!!! In the end it’s not about stereotyping, it’s about eating!!!!! (oh and respect is always served at our table)

8 Kelly Lester January 7, 2014 at 8:36 am

Thanks for your comment Rachelle! It’s even easier to make lunches for the ones we love when we know how much it means to them :)

9 Ryan Gomes March 28, 2014 at 11:36 pm

Hi, I just stumbled upon your blog/website via a pinterest post “Man-up your lunches” that caught my attention. As a bachelor it is a challenge feeding myself healthy lunches that I actually made. It’s so easy to run to the drive-thru (YIKES!, I know), or to just buy, buy, buy. I spend big bucks eating out (a little too much). I am willing to try these ideas to stay healthy and save major money!

10 Kelly Lester March 29, 2014 at 5:03 pm

Hi Ryan! Welcome! So happy you found this post. With just a little planning ahead, and maybe 10 minutes the night before, it’s not hard to take a lunch with you :) My Pinterest boards especially are filled with tons of great lunch ideas and easy recipes, and every blogger I feature here has a ton of ideas too. (Don’tcha just love the internet?) Thanks for your great comment and … happy packing!

11 cherry May 8, 2014 at 2:07 am

He can pack his own lunch, I am not his mother…
Also, I just love the “gendering” of food…

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