Tips for Keeping Your Lunches Easy, Affordable but Varied!
If you’re like me (especially in grad school), you don’t have time to make elaborate lunches, but you are not thrilled at the concept of eating a PB&J every day either. So, I have a simple suggestion for you! I came up with this idea while in graduate school when I had little to no time to fix myself lunches nor money to buy ingredients for them.
PICK THREE DIFFERENT ITEMS
By this, I just mean, it’s much easier to keep your lunches unique and varied if you have a couple of different items with your lunch. For instance, whenever I eat lunch, I usually like to have a sandwich, a chip of some sort, a fruit and a drink. So, your lunch has a few components which means, you may technically be eating the same kind of lunch everyday but it’s different because you can change one or all of the 4 items you bring.
2. VARY THE ITEMS WEEKLY
In grad school I would grocery shop once a week. I’d buy one type of bread, one lunch meat, one bag of chips, one type of fruit and one drink. I didn’t have the money for a lot of different kinds of chips, breads, meats and drinks, but I would vary what kinds of breads/meats/chips/fruits/drinks I got each week.
Here’s an example:
Week 1: I’d have a croissant sandwich with chicken (that I’d cook and have ready) honey mustard and avocado, Doritos and strawberries and a Root Beer.
Week 2: I’d have a bagel sandwich with cucumbers, ham and mustard, salt and vinegar chips, a tangelo and sweet tea.
Week 3: Buttermilk bread with tuna and lettuce; Pringles, watermelon and Coke.
You can get even more creative and change out the fruit for apple sauce or yogurt or the chips for some other item of your choice. There is not strict formula to follow, I just found that it helped my budget to only buy one type of bread/meat/drink/fruit/chip for a week but also it helped my sanity to change it up—ever so slightly—every week. It made grocery shopping fun because every week was a new adventure! What kind of sandwich do want to try out this week, and with what unique chip, fruit and drink?
This is not some mind blowing, world changing idea I’m offering (and if you hate sandwiches is even less so) but you may find it useful if you are operating under time constraints and with a tighter budget—-especially if you are student (undergrad or grad).
I loved to experiment and try out different kinds of sandwiches and chips and fruits every week! If you like my suggestions or have any of your own, I’d love to hear from you!
The Liberty Belle