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Colorful Toasts and Lunchmeat Alternatives

Processed meats like deli sliced turkey and ham are sandwich staples and make for easy protein additions at breakfast and lunch. However, research continues to show that processed meats – high in sodium and preservative chemicals – are associated with chronic illnesses. In fact, a study found individuals who ate red or processed meat four or more times per week had a 20% higher risk of colon cancer than those who consumed it less than twice per week. Ditch the lunchmeat for these alternatives:


  • Cottage cheese
  • Hummus
  • Almond, peanut or other nut/seed butter


  • Scrambled or sliced boiled eggs
  • Silken tofu
  • Flavored tuna packs
  • Sliced grilled chicken
  • Black beans or chickpeas

Though the daily fiber recommendation for men is 38 grams and 25 grams for women, the average American only consumes 15 grams of fiber per day. Try these flavor combinations we taste tested that pack in both fiber and protein to fuel your day:

Strawberries and Cream Toast

Features: whole grain toast, berries and almonds provide fiber to keep you energized for longer. Cottage cheese is a good source of protein and pairs well with the vitamin C-rich strawberries.

  • 1 whole wheat toast
  • ¼ cup cottage cheese
  • 4 strawberries, sliced
  • 1 tsp balsamic reduction
  • 1 tbsp almonds, sliced

Cucumber and Roasted Red Pepper Hummus Toast

Features: whole wheat toast and veggies provide a nice crisp and fiber to contrast the creamy hummus. Roasted red pepper and cucumber are great flavor combinations and packed in nutrients.

  • 1 whole wheat toast
  • 2 tbsp hummus
  • 1/3 roasted red pepper
  • Garnish: thinly sliced radishes and cucumbers

Southwestern Toast

Features: black beans and whole wheat toast provide a complete protein and significant fiber. The flavors of cotija cheese, avocado, lime and cilantro are a perfect combination.

  • 1 whole wheat toast
  • ¼ avocado, sliced
  • ¼ cup black beans
  • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce
  • 1 tbsp Cotija cheese
  • 1 lime wedge
  • Garnish: cilantro, chopped

Shanthi Appelö is a registered dietitian and health and wellness spokesperson for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan based in Detroit. Passionate about the science of nutrition and behavior, Shanthi has experience working in clinical nutrition, public health and teaching in the university setting. In her free time, she enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, exploring the outdoors, working on art and spending time with family.

A Healthier Michigan
Author: A Healthier Michigan

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