You probably know the scenario. The office clock says noon and everyone in the office starts talking about where to go for lunch. Everyone agrees on where to go, and you don’t want to be left out so you go with them. You didn’t bring anything for lunch because you just didn’t have time. So you hurry off to the restaurant, gobble down your food, share a few laughs with your co-workers and rush back to the office wishing you had time for a nap.
As you walk to your desk, you notice this guy putting away his brown bag. He appears calm, happy and ready to get back to work, some of which he did while eating his lunch. He’s thinking how delicious it was, how much money he saved and the hassle avoided.
Is it worth it to prepare and bring your lunch to work each day? Since it’s hard to find lunch for less than ten bucks, I think so. Looking at some basic examples let’s say the cost to fix your own lunch costs about $3 a day. It’s probably much cheaper but we’ll go with that for the estimate. That’s $15 for a five day week. Eating out at approximately $10 a day comes to $50 for the week. You saved at least $35 not including drive time and gas. That’s more than $1,800 a year saved. Interested?
Lunch Ideas For Work: 5 Brown Bag Tips To Make Bringing Your Lunch a Little Easier:
1. Prepare it the night before – That way you’re not rushed in the morning. Keep it simple but be creative and think healthy. Sandwiches on wholesome bread are fine but include nuts, fruit or yogurt. Also, put in a little treat for yourself that you can look forward to, perhaps a health bar or your favorite cookie.
2. Plan ahead and buy in bulk with lunches in mind –Buy large chips and put them in smaller plastic bags instead of buying small individual bags. Or buy your favorite snacks and make your own 100 calorie packs. Don’t pay more for convenience!
3. Cook a big dinner and save some for lunch the next day or the entire week- If it’s home cooked you know it’s good, healthy and better for you. Put it in individual containers that night so you can grab and go in the morning.
4. If you’re running late, grab a can of soup or vegetable chili- Most offices have ovens or microwaves you can use for heating it up. If your office doesn’t have a microwave (or it’s too nasty to use) invest in a thermos. That way you can heat your lunch up in the morning and it will still be hot by the time you are ready to eat.
5. Bring your drink- If you drink soda, you can get a 12-pack of soda for around $2.99 and that comes to about 25 cents a can. If you prefer water, bring your own water bottle so you can refill it throughout the day. Compare that with expensive vending machine drinks or coffee and you’ve saved even more.
If you need some inspiration for lunch ideas, my favorite list is at the Hillbilly Housewife Lunchbox ideas.
There’s a lot to be said for brown bagging your lunch. You eat better, save time, money and you’re more productive. Before you know it, you may find your other co-workers brown bagging it with you.
What are your favorite lunch ideas for work?