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saving money on lunch

edited 30 November -1 at 12:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
39 replies 16.8K views
piggehpiggeh Forumite
1.7K posts
edited 30 November -1 at 12:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
Right, at the moment I don't make any of my lunches for work, and instead either go to Asda or buy it from the sandwich van as it comes round each day. However, I want to start putting some money aside for a holiday or a car, so need to cut some expenses, and this seems like a fairly obvious one!

At the same time, I'm fairly lethargic once I get home, and I very much doubt I would stand there each evening/morning doing a lunch, so was thinking of something I could do at the weekend and then freeze during the week and take what I need each day.

I quite like some salads, but dont like fish, or anything really oily, or nuts. I wouldnt mind say, chicken, bacon, potato salad, pasta, lettuce, etc, but dont know how well these freeze or how well they store for a week in the fridge!

Does anyone have any suggestions on what to do that I could get away with doing just once a week and that then stores well?
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Replies

  • Anne_Marie_2Anne_Marie_2 Forumite
    2.1K posts
    Was going to leap in here with some suggestions, apart from the freezing bit. I have never frozen any of my home made salad concoctions, but they usually have mayo, fromage frais or yoghourt, and I suspect they would separate.
    Salad vegetables do not generally freeze well in my humble opinion.
    You could make up sandwiches, pitta bread or wraps and freeze them, depending on fillings - wouldn't advise sliced tomato, they go all soggy and watery, likewise cucumber and lettuce.
  • piggehpiggeh Forumite
    1.7K posts
    So basically I'm doomed eh?

    You are probably right, it would probably seperate the mayo and that. Otherwise I guess the next best option is to do as much as possible and add the mayo and salad each morning/evening.
    matched betting: £879.63
  • Anne_Marie_2Anne_Marie_2 Forumite
    2.1K posts
    piggeh wrote:
    So basically I'm doomed eh?

    You are probably right, it would probably seperate the mayo and that. Otherwise I guess the next best option is to do as much as possible and add the mayo and salad each morning/evening.
    Not at all, I just can't think of anything salady that can be frozen, but I may well be wrong!
    What about making a quiche and freezing that in slices. You could make up some potato salad, bean salad, coleslaw - some other kind of salad. They will last for several days in the fridge. Pop into wee containers to take to work. Pack quiche seperately, or it will go soggy, add a few tomatoes, a lettuce leaf or some spinach and there you go! A total feast!
    If you like dressing with your salad - take in a wee screwtop jar.

    When I said make a quiche, make more than one, because it will just disappear - only evidence left will be crumbs, but it's just as easy to make two as one.
  • Anne_Marie_2Anne_Marie_2 Forumite
    2.1K posts
    You could always make pasta in tomato sauce and freeze that, and have as a salad in a bowl. You might just have to add a little water as it does get a bit thick. You could always add some chopped chicken or whatever you fancy - keep some leftovers from night before depending. Otherwise some nice crunchy veggies.

    Wraps are easily my favourite, but you don't want to do mornings or evenings - they are a cinch honest.

    Well that's my brain drained out of recipes for tonight! Someone will along in the morning with some good ideas.
  • Penny-Pincher!!Penny-Pincher!! Forumite
    8.3K posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    HM Coleslaw and Potatoe Salad will last about 3 days in the fridge, so you could make some up on Sunday night, then only have to make one batch through the week.

    Rice/Pasta salad are nice and refreshing. Normally have with chicken,ham, cheese, tuna etc. I have a chopped salad in the fridge (lasts 2/3 days) then add salad daily to pasta/rice-take in Mayo or Salad cream.

    Cold Chicken, Cold Pizza, sausage rolls, pork pies. HM Quiche is lovely and can be frozen easily and portioned. Just take a bag of salad with you to go with it.

    Do they have a fridge?

    HTH

    PP
    xx
    To repeat what others have said, requires education, to challenge it,
    requires brains!
    FEB GC/DIESEL £200/4 WEEKS
  • Eels100Eels100 Forumite
    984 posts
    I was always the same as you when it came to making lunches but I now make one for OH every morning! I bake a cake at the weekend (the weetabix recipe on here is FAB!) and give him a slice of that, I buy big packs of mixed nuts and raisins, or seeds, and give him a small mixed bag of them, fruit (eg plums, grapes, pomegranate, use your imagination!) and a yoghurt. That all takes a matter of seconds to put together, then I make a couple of rolls with last night's leftover cold meat or salad, or whatever.

    Planning your evening meals to provide leftovers for the morning mean you can get two meals for the time and effort it takes to make one. Quiche is a good suggestion, but pasta, cold potatoes, pizza, wraps all make yummy lunches. And leftover cold vegetables can usually be mixed through rice in a dressing to make another tasty salad.

    Oh, and frozen homemade soup is a good one - take it to work in the morning and it'll be almost defrosted at lunchtime, then just zap it in the microwave if you have one.
  • aimeelisteraimeelister Forumite
    600 posts
    ✭✭
    I knew i had seen it on here somewhere before

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=157506
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=185456

    Im sure theres a better way of doing a link, but im not that clever!

    I must say ive started making my lunches and im really bad with bread, so im fishing 2 slices out the freezer each day and slopping some spread and a slice of cheese on it and a bit of lettuce, the bread is then defrosted by the time it gets to lunch.
  • I just do sandwiches every morning at breakfast - only takes about 2 mins.

    Sometimes I'll do curry or pasta or something in the evening, do a double lot and keep the excess for lunch the next day - no extra time spent at all.
    'Never keep up with Joneses. Drag them down to your level. It's cheaper.' Quentin Crisp
  • Cheese scones are handy to have in the freezer - just grab and go!
  • Linda32Linda32 Forumite
    4.4K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭
    I oftern take salads to work and they keep fine without going in the fridge, well I'm still here anyway :D

    This is what I do, We usualy have salad on the side rather than veggies during the summer, so when I do the tea in the evening, I also chop up salad stuff into a small bowl.

    Then in the morning, I open a tin of mackeral (I know you said you don't like fish but I wanted to include that to show it stays fresh until dinner with out being in the fridge ;) ), throw half in my salad bowl and store the other half in the fridge for next day.

    Or boil an egg the night before, leave in fridge until morning then chop that into your salad bowl.

    OH likes sticks of celery and carrot so every now and again I chop up a batch and keep them in the fridge, so I just take an handfull out in the morning.

    HTH
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