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seven great ideas for packed lunches

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Its now officially autumn, and I’m entering into another phase of trying to be good. This time I’m trying to stop money frittering out of my wallet at lunchtime by bringing my own packed lunch to work where I can take advantage of a microwave. Here are seven of my current favourite ideas:

  1. Beef chili burritos. Delicious either hot or cold, made from a big pot of chili con carne and flour tortillas. In my house the ingredients for chili con carne are minced beef, onion, tinned tomatoes, red kidney beans, garlic, chili powder, cumin and Worcestershire sauce.
  2. Soup and bread rolls. I cheat and take tinned soup in, with a couple of rolls (preferably cheese bread). I like the rolls that you can buy part-baked either from the chiller or the freezer as they only take a few minutes to finish off in the oven.
  3. Hamburgers. I generally buy good quality burgers, a nice piece of mature cheddar, seeded hamburger buns and maybe some onion. I take them to work unassembled, reheat in the microwave and then put them together.
  4. Banger in a bun. I have to admit that I don’t like frankfurters, but I do like a great British sausage in a hotdog bun. Excellent hot or cold with good quality relish or mustard.
  5. Egg fried rice. This can use up all sorts of leftovers, together with the rice. To take to work, I make a little omelette and cut it up, adding it to the rice, probably some chopped onion, red pepper and peas if I have them. I heat up at work and add soy sauce to taste.
  6. Jacket potatoes. I know that they taste better baked in the oven, but a jacket potato heated up in the microwave at work, with some nice strong grated cheddar is very filling and quite delicious.
  7. Leftover curry. Unfailingly better reheated the next day, leftover curry is a great lunchtime treat as the cold weather comes in. I find it easier to take naan bread to accompany my curry than rice.

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8 comments for “seven great ideas for packed lunches”

  1. Good luck with your phase of being good :) I will try stealing some of your ideas and see if they will work for me. My current packed lunch menu has three options in it - pasta, sandwiches or left-overs. About time I added something new to the menu :)

    Posted by ispf | September 27, 2007, 4:29 am
  2. cool post

    here’s a tip related to rice

    i’m a 20-something bachelor, and I’ve just started my first job. once a week, I get up and put some rice in a rice steamer before jumping in the shower. the rice is hot, and ready when I’m gearing up to get out!
    it keeps just fine on my desk until lunch time.

    Posted by jehan | November 29, 2008, 11:06 pm
  3. If we eat out or do take out, I immediately break up the meal in 3-5 portions (in addition to my meal that day) and just eat it for the rest of the week. This way you’ll enjoy your delish meal from a few days….

    Posted by J&B. | March 17, 2009, 7:33 pm
  4. @J&B.
    That’s a great idea. Of course, I can be greedy, so sometimes there isn’t enough for 5 portions, but still, it’s a brilliant suggestion.

    Posted by plonkee | March 19, 2009, 12:07 pm
  5. Egg fried rice is a good idea. Eggs are also pretty cheap to buy compared with other foods.

    Posted by mike | June 5, 2009, 6:14 pm
  6. I agree with the curry, but I definitely would not want to put a burger in the microwave.

    Posted by WaysToSave | November 1, 2010, 6:49 pm

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