Healthy sandwich ideas

Healthy spreads to vary your sandwiches

  • Two healthy sandwiches

    Hummus (chickpeas, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, pepper and tahini), reduced fat tzatziki (reduced fat yoghurt, cucumber and garlic dip), vegetable based dips, salsa.

  • Pesto, low fat mayonnaise, sweet chilli sauce.
  • Cranberry sauce, gherkin spread, chutney, mustard.
  • Low fat cream cheese, cottage cheese, ricotta.
  • Creamed corn, mashed avocado.

Creative sandwich designs

  • Zebra sanga: 1 slice of white, 2 slices of wholemeal, rye or grain. This is a great way to increase consumption of wholemeal/grainy bread.
  • Pinwheel or sushi sandwich: Spread a slice of bread with filling (e.g. avocado), roll up, cut in half and display with the filling showing.
  • Triple decker: multilayered sandwich (3 slices of bread, 2 different fillings per layer).

Top tips for sandwiches

  • Vary sandwiches, fillings and spreads to give more food variety and choice.
  • Try different types of bread, such as wholemeal, grainy, seeded bread, rye, sour dough, fruit bread, rolls, mini rolls, wraps, pita, focaccia, Lebanese and lavash breads.
  • Use poly- or mono-unsaturated margarine instead of butter. Spread sparingly, if at all.
  • Offer toasted sandwiches and wraps, or hot rolls.
  • Wrap sandwiches immediately after being made to stop the bread drying out.
  • Pat dry moist ingredients, such as tomato or pineapple, and place between dry ingredients/spreads to help stop the bread turning soggy.
  • Always try to include a protein source such as egg, lean meats, fish, reduced fat cheese or legumes (hummus dip, lentil pattie, Mexican style kidney beans).
  • Always try to include at least one vegetable or fruit filling.
  • Use lean meats and reduced fat cheeses.
  • Cut sandwiches into different shapes and sizes, e.g. four triangles for smaller appetites or ‘triple decker’ for older students.
  • Keep in mind that younger students only have little hands - Try mini dinner rolls.
  • Use leftover bread to make up toasties.
  • Name healthy sandwiches with catchy titles, like ‘Chomping Chicken Burger’, or after popular themes like ‘Bart Simpson’s BLT’ to help add to their popularity.

Healthy meat based sandwich fillings

  • Healthy pita wraps

    Lean ham, reduced fat cheese, tomato and chutney or salsa.

  • Roast chicken (no skin) and coleslaw (low fat dressing).
  • Roast chicken (no skin), cucumber, lettuce and reduced fat tzatziki or avocado.
  • Roast chicken (no skin), avocado, lettuce and alfalfa.
  • Tuna (in spring water), corn kernels, grated vegetables and sauce (salsa, chutney, low fat mayonnaise).
  • Tuna (in spring water), salad, and reduced fat cheese.
  • Roast beef, salad (lettuce, tomato, grated carrot, cucumber) and mustard.
  • Turkey, spinach, tomato and low fat mayo.
  • Roasted chicken (no skin), pesto and char-grilled capsicum.
  • Salmon (in spring water), spinach, spring onion, low fat mayo and reduced fat Swiss cheese.

Healthy vegetarian sandwich fillings

  • Mashed egg, salad and low fat mayonnaise.
  • Baked beans and grated reduced fat cheese (toasted).
  • Reduced fat cheese, salad and hummus.
  • Grated reduced fat cheese, avocado and lettuce.
  • Reduced fat ricotta, banana, currents, cinnamon and honey.
  • Reduced fat cheese/ricotta, grated carrot and sultanas.
  • Banana, tahini and honey or cinnamon.
  • Reduced fat cheese and vegemite

Themed sandwich fillings

  • B.L.T.: Bacon (lean and cooked), lettuce and tomato.
  • Tropicana: Lean ham, reduced fat cheese, tomato and crushed pineapple (drain well).
  • Mexicana: Baked beans, grated reduced fat cheese (toasted) and salsa.
  • Meatball Lovers: Sliced meatballs in tomato pasta sauce, reduced fat cheese and spinach.
  • Souvlaki: Lean chicken/mince patties or lamb, salad and reduced fat tzatziki served in pita bread.
  • Falafel Wraps (falafel mix can be purchased commercially and is quick and inexpensive to prepare): Salad and reduced fat tzatziki or hummus served in a wrap.
  • Christmas Lovers: Lean ham or turkey, roast vegetables and cranberry sauce.
  • The Aussie: Roast beef, beetroot, reduced fat cheese, pineapple and salad.
  • Italian Veggie Patch: Pesto, char-grilled zucchini, char-grilled eggplant, reduced fat feta and spinach.
  • Reuben: Corned beef, low fat coleslaw and Swiss cheese.


  • We ‘buy with our eyes’, so creative presentation is important.
  • It’s worth the effort as it will attract students to make a healthy choice, which in turn will increase sales of healthy food.

Important information for menu planning

  • Where possible choose reduced fat, reduced salt, and/or no added sugar varieties of products.
  • When selecting commercially made food and drink products, remember to check their nutrition information panel against the ‘Nutrient criteria for occasionally foods’ table in the Healthy Canteen Kit - Food Planner.

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