I absolutely love to eat, but when it comes to having lunch, I don’t always have the money to go out and grab something at the local fast food chain. Sometimes, all I have is 10.00 for the whole week for lunch and you know (depending on where you go), you can spend that and then some in one sitting.
I am so guilty of that….Just look at my face. GUILTY!!!
I was making eating very expensive when it really didn’t have to be. If you’re anything like me then you’re on a budget and after taking care of the kids, the house, the bills, getting groceries and filling the tank with gas – I’d really only have just about $20.00 or less left over to have for lunch the rest of the week. What makes that whole scenario even worse is that I would go to work and spend half of it on lunch and it was just Monday. I had to get through the rest of the week on 10.00 or less….
Eating lunch used to be my most expensive meal of the day and to kick it up a notch, the food I purchased would make me sleepy and sluggish for the rest of the day. What was I doing to myself?, What was I doing to my pockets!
When I realized that I was spending way too much money on lunch, I decided that I had to come up with a plan where I could eat more for less as I was spending way more money on lunch than breakfast and dinner alone. Not only was eating out breaking my pocket each and every week, sometimes it left me hungry and money-less for the rest of the week without having any money to buy me anything to eat after Tuesday.
So, I came up with a plan that helped me save money and could help you too, Especially if you don’t want to eat the infamous PB&J everyday or Ramen Noodles, in which is nothing wrong if that’s what you choose but I love variety as I get bored with the same ole, same ole easily.
Listed below are a couple of suggestions on how you can not only save money but have a different variety to eat everyday of the week. At the end of the tips, I posted a short video of the things I look for when I go to the store.
A FEW SUGGESTIONS FOR MY LUNCH CREW!!
We Have Leftovers?
I absolutely hate cooking and only do it because I have two kids and a kitchen (seriously)…but I noticed that when I would cook, I would never bring leftovers to work the next day. If I had money, I would just use that to pick me up something but why do that when you have leftovers. I know quite a few people may not like them as they have to have something freshly cooked everyday (I knew someone like that) but leftovers are a great way to save an extreme amount of money that could be used on something else, like dish soap to wash the dishes or other things. So, utilize and start to pack you up a lunch when dinner is over. Your pocket will thank you later..
Dollar Tree is My Best Friend
Okay, I love the dollar tree and it has really evolved since the 80’s and 90’s – do you know that now you can buy steak strips for a dollar at the dollar tree?, YES HONEY!!! STEAK!!! who would have thought. If you’re a big breakfast person that has to have something to stick to your bones then you can buy the pancake and sausage entree’s for a dollar. And they have a variety of other things that you can buy as well, from chicken and rib sandwiches to french fries. Why eat PB&J when you have the dollar tree. If you’ve been sleeping on the dollar store, then I would advise you to WAKE UP & SHOP! plus the food is actually delicious, trust me – it doesn’t taste like it’s only a dollar.
Wal-Mart is Cool Too
You can find some great deals at your local Wal-Mart Store. As you’ll see in the video below, I shop for quantities that last me a whole week. I’m not a big breakfast person so yogurt, fruit and granola are fine with me. I usually find the better deals in the evenings when things have been marked down from the morning. I can get a sandwich, burrito, a salad, yogurt for the week, cheese sticks and nuts for snacks and let’s not forget those Michelina meals that are only $1.00 and if you catch them on the right day, they may even be marked down to $.88 cents. Buy you five of those and that’s your lunch for the week. As far as something to drink, I’m a big fan of the Sam’s Choice Sparkling waters, they come in so many different flavors (mine is Blackberry Lemonade and Orange Cream) plus they are cheap, $.60 for a 33.8 fl oz bottle. I checked my Wal-Mart last week and they were marked down to $.50 (guess it’s time to stock up).
Sometimes I even buy a case of water, in which is really cheap – You can get 32 bottles of the Wal-Mart Great Value brand for less than 5.00 and you can head on over to the dollar tree to buy you a box of 10 flavor packets for 1.00.
So as you can see, Lunch really doesn’t have to be expensive at all. It’s all about your mindset and how that mindset views saving. I wish I had took the time to really sit down and figure all this stuff out earlier, I could very well be on my way to Paris right now.
But we live and learn and as GI-JOE says; “And Knowing is Half the Battle”
How much money are you spending on lunch a week?
(Please forgive any errors, it’s my first live vlog video I’ve posted to the page so it’s as professional as my phone would allow)
Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager
Let’s Live Well, Laugh Loud & Love Hard!
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P.S. I am not sponsored nor have I been paid by Dollar Tree or Wal-Mart – these are just my observances and opinions.
6 thoughts on “Lunch on a Budget for $20 or Less”
Great tips on affordable, and certainly more nutritious lunches than what fast food can offer. I like your blog–you’ve got some good stuff going on: food for the body and food for the soul. Inspire on. . .
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Hi Stephanie, thanks so much for reading the post and visiting the blog. Yes, there are always other alternatives – people just have to want to choose them. I appreciate your kind words…
Ok I see you!!! This was actually quite helpful. What I really liked was the fact that there are more healthy options then not. No excuses now. ha! That YouTube video was very helpful as well. I wonder if anyone was eavesdropping on those great tidbits? I will be eating good and saving good now.
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Hi VaGaBoND – I appreciate you so much for reading the blog, that made my day. I take great joy in being able to help others not make the same mistakes that I have made in life, which is what JustsumInspiration is all about. So glad you got some tips and are able to use them. Let me know how it works out for you. Blessings ~
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