You don’t have to spend your hard-earned money on a small to-go order from your local chain restaurant. Instead, you can put together packed meals that taste better and cost less. Plus, they’re more sustainable for the planet – and you’ll have more time to enjoy your lunch break.
Here are five cheap lunch ideas for work.
You don’t always want to eat soup when it’s warm outside, but it’s a quick and easy alternative to most lunches. Plus, it’s delicious. You’ll use a slow-cooker to make this soup, which means that it takes minimal effort.
A base of beans, tomatoes and broth works perfectly for any other taco-esque toppings that you want to add. Then, pour the soup into individual containers that you can take to work — pack add-ons like avocado chunks and tortilla strips that you can put on top.
There’s a reason why so many busy people love this combination! It’s perfect for when you want to prepare meals for the entire week. You can cook each component beforehand so that you don’t have to rush when you wake up. Additionally, vegetables and rice are always inexpensive.
Feel free to explore different spices and sauces to jazz up your selection. Try honey sesame flavors for an Asian-inspired dish, or rub the meat with a spicy cajun mix. Then, use a reusable container to reheat your meal at work.
You don’t need meat to get protein. Most hummuses use chickpeas as a base. These beans pack a punch when it comes to nutrition. They also work to control blood sugar and curb hunger spikes. For this recipe, you can either make your own or use a store-bought version.
Grab a tortilla or pita shell to use for the wrap. Then, spread your hummus across the bottom — pile on cucumbers, tomatoes and spinach for your greens. Sprinkle feta cheese on top for a yummy finish. If you’d like more protein, try tofu or chicken.
If you think that salads can’t be tasty, here’s a recipe that says otherwise. This dish combines Mediterranean flavors with yummy grains and vegetables for a filling lunch. There’s no meat, so you won’t have to spend much to make several portions. Fresh vegetables often average less than $2 per serving — and bulk grains go a long way. You don’t have to become a vegetarian, but it’s cost-effective to eat more plant-based foods.
You can prepare these ingredients beforehand if you store them inside separate containers. Then, combine them into a salad that you can eat later on.
Here’s a versatile lunch that takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. This chicken salad uses avocado and corn as nutritious vegetables and delicious add-ons. Plus, you don’t even need to cook your own chicken if you don’t have time. Use a rotisserie instead! They’re a cheap alternative to a whole pack of chicken.
You can eat this chicken salad on a sandwich or pita if you want. You could also try crackers if you like to dip. Are you on a carb-free diet? Use a fork! It’s delicious, no matter what.
If you need a few ways to transform your work lunches, try these tasty options.