Bagged lunches afford the possibility of not only saving money, but having access to what you actually want to eat. No more settling for what is nearby! Without having to leave the office you also get more time to eat with - and maybe the chance to squeeze in a few minutes of overtime to make the most of your hard-earned money.
Below are just a few ideas of what bagged lunches you could make for the week using limited grocery items at the store. The idea is to buy items that go far - and don't cost too much. The items you'll want to have on hand are small Ziploc bags, a plastic sandwich container, and some brown paper bags.
Chicken salad sandwich with a banana, portable applesauce, and potato chips
Portable applesauce is super convenient, and you can purchase a four pack for under $5. Chicken salad can easily be made from leftovers - just add mayo, salt, and pepper! To save money, purchase a bulk bag of potato chips and use snack bags to distribute them. The white bread will cost under $2, and bananas are always under $1 a pound - even the organic ones.
Spinach salad with a side of pretzel sticks, and your favorite juice
There is no need to pretend you don't enjoy juice just because you're an adult, and it is an easy (plus affordable) way to get a serving of fruit. Pretzel sticks can be found in bulk bags right next to the potato chips for around the same cost. For the spinach salad, you can use fresh spinach leaves, goat cheese, diced tomato, and bacon bits.
PB&J on Rye with a cheese stick, portable applesauce, and muscle milk
Muscle milk is packed with the protein you need to stay sharp through the day. A PB&J on rye is even better than on white bread, and a cheese stick never goes out of style. You don't have to pick string cheese if you don't want to, of course, but nobody is going to judge if you do.
Taco Bowl with seltzer water
This is great if you had tacos the night before. All you need is taco meat and your favorite toppings! I personally enjoy Mexican cheese, honey chipotle salsa, and avocado. Add a flavored seltzer water for a healthier choice than a soda - or pick an all natural soda like Jarritos.
Avocado BLT on wheat, with a bag of chips and a pickle
This is the adult version of your normal BLT. You make it the exact same way, just add a little slightly-smashed avocado after the mayo on the bread. Naturally, this is served with a bag of chips and a pickle. If you want to add a fruit, either an apple or a banana are great choices.
Homemade trail mix with a beef jerky, cheese stick, apple sauce, and juice
Hearty homemade trail mix can be made with your favorite nuts, dried fruit, and chunks of chocolate. You'll be surprised at how filling this can be because of the high protein content! Add a beef jerky stick (or your favorite dried meat) for a little something extra.
Stuffed Avocado with a bag of chips, fresh pepper slices, and pretzel sticks
Cut two avocados in half, place the four pieces in your sandwich container, and then load them up with your favorite fillings. An idea might be salsa and cheddar cheese, or perhaps bacon bits and goat cheese. Bell pepper slices are crisp, refreshing, and sweet. They can even be tucked right atop the avocado halves to save space.