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20 Frugal Bagged Lunch Ideas

20 Frugal Bagged Lunch Ideas
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Brown-bagging your lunch is a great way to cut down on daily spending by avoiding the price of packaged or pre-assembled food items. It can even be eco-friendly if you use reusable containers and baggies. However, thinking up a variety of meal ideas can be difficult, discouraging, and you may wind up spending more preparing a packed lunch than if you had just bought it pre-packaged.

If this is you, bagged lunches aren’t saving you as much money — and still tasting good — as they should be. Frustrated brown-baggers, this one’s for you, and all those out there who’ve never tried switching to brown bag lunches because you don’t know where to begin. Here are some tasty and affordable ideas for how to rock your brown bag lunches:

1. Turkey sandwich wraps

Turkey lunch meat is typically inexpensive, and tastes great with a number of different cheeses.

    source: rockYOface via Flickr

    2. Chili (homemade or store-bought) & crackers

    Chili is relatively easy to make, even if you’re not an expert cook. It can be made in large batches which you can freeze and de-thaw later. Or you can go the canned route, and bring some crackers along for dipping.

      source: paul goyette via Flickr

      3. Hummus and veggie stuffed pita bread

      Pita bread is awesome because it’s already got a pocket so you don’t even have to put two pieces of bread together! Stuff some hummus and inexpensive veggies in there and you’ve got a quick pocket-o-sandwich.

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        source: roboppy via Flickr

        4. Ham & cheese on a croissant

        Ham & cheese is a classic and cheap combo, but you might get bored with it quickly. Pick up a bag of pre-made croissants at the grocery store, or another unusual bread if you fancy.

          source: Mon555 via Flickr

          5. PB&J, substitute the “P”

          There are all kinds of spreads that taste great with jelly/jam if you’re bored of this lunch staple. Sunflower seed, almond, and cashew butter are the most popular.

            source: mysoslife.com

            6. PB & honey sandwich

            However, if you love your butter with the peanut (as I do), substitute the jelly/jam instead. Honey and peanut butter make a delicious sandwich.

              source: jazzijava via Flickr

              7. PB & potato chip sandwich

              If you’ve never tried this childhood classic…well, don’t knock it ’til you try it! (I really really love peanut butter, if you can’t tell.)

                source: LinguistAtLarge via Wikipedia

                8. Scrambled egg “cupcakes”

                You’d have to make these before the morning-of, obviously, but these tiny pseudo-quiches are tasty and inexpensive. Here’s a recipe.

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                  source: chasingthefirefly.wordpress.com

                  9. Banana & peanut butter wraps

                  Turkey isn’t the only thing that tastes great in a tortilla! (Okay, I swear I’m done with peanut butter…)

                    source: vegancrunk.blogspot.com

                    10. Casseroles (any kind)

                    Another one you have to make in advance, but an evening spent making a casserole provides lunches for days. Plus, there are a plethora of casserole recipes available online, so you can change it up on a whim.

                      source: Julia Frost via Flickr

                      11. Baked beans & hot dogs

                      Chop up some hot dogs and throw them into a can of baked beans. Heat and enjoy.

                        source: servedupwithlove.blogspot.com

                        12. Homemade lentil stew

                        Bags of dried lentils are super cheap, and make a great stew with ham or ham bone, sausage, squash, and a variety of spices. Find some ideas for recipes here.

                          source: youasamachine via Flickr

                          13. Tuna sandwich with celery/cucumbers

                          Even a good tuna fish sandwich can get boring. Chopped celery or cucumbers make a great simple addition,  and add a dash of pepper to taste.

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                            source: David Lifson via Flickr

                            14. Pasta salad

                            Cook a big batch of pasta, then cool it in the fridge and add any veggies, cheese, and nuts you want. Here are some ideas for recipes, which you can tweak based on what’s more affordable at the grocery store.

                              source: Michael Verhoef via Flickr

                              15. Microwave-ready tortilla chips & cheese

                              Nacho purists will sniff their noses at this, but when you’re trying to save money, the microwave is your new best friend. Some shredded cheese over tortilla chips popped into the microwave is quick and inexpensive.

                                source: garlicmysoul.com

                                16. Baked potato & favorite toppings

                                Bake some potatoes the night before and pack one or two with classic toppings like sour cream, shredded cheese, and chives or onions.

                                  source: curryandcomfort.yummly.com

                                  17. Have fun in the canned soup aisle

                                  Who says soup in a can has to be boring? There are many flavors of soup and grocery stores often have specials on canned soup, so branch out and try some!

                                    source: NPR.org

                                    18. Buy “manager’s specials” from the bakery section

                                    They might not be called “manager’s specials” at your local grocery store, but there’s usually a section with discounted day-old baked goods that have nothing wrong with them other than not being freshly baked. Hit up this section to get bread for sandwiches and muffins for treats.

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                                      source: howtohaveitall.net

                                      19. Make extra when cooking dinner

                                      Make a couple extra burritos or burger patties for dinner, and take the extra(s) to lunch the next day.

                                        source: dimitridf via Flickr

                                        20. Upgrade your miscelleneous leftovers

                                        Ever used the leftover food from a big holiday to make sandwiches and pudding the day after? Keep that going all year ’round and make your lunch with leftovers from the previous night’s dinner. Salads, wraps, and sandwiches are all quick fixes for food that requires a little revamp.

                                          source: kthread via Flickr

                                          Featured photo credit: Untitled/Travelling Steve via flic.kr

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                                          Last Updated on July 12, 2021

                                          100 Incredible Life Hacks That Make Life So Much Easier

                                          100 Incredible Life Hacks That Make Life So Much Easier
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                                          Want to learn some quick and easy life hacks that are easy to do, low cost and saves you time?

                                          By tweaking little things in your daily life, it can make your life much more convenient!

                                          Here’re 100 of the most practical life hacks so you can just pick up any of them right away!

                                          83 tie a small piece of bright colored fabric

                                            84 write random letter

                                              85 use a rubberband

                                                86 dorm smell bad

                                                  87 lean your phone on your sunglassess

                                                    89 how to waterproof your shoes

                                                      90 take a picture of the name card

                                                        91 iron inside out

                                                          92 old newspaper

                                                            93 tumble try shoes

                                                              keep a card like this

                                                                SONY DSC

                                                                  94 soap bar

                                                                    95 make a hole

                                                                      96 drop the battery

                                                                        97 use a coozie

                                                                          98 when taking a picture

                                                                            use a clean dust pan

                                                                              try a pants hanger

                                                                                use your cellphone light

                                                                                  use a spring from an old pen

                                                                                    quick and easy iphone speaker

                                                                                      user binder clips

                                                                                        wrap a wet paper towel around your beverage

                                                                                          put pancake mix in a ketchup bottle

                                                                                            clean out an old lotion bottle for your beach

                                                                                              use a muffin tin to serve condiments at a bbq

                                                                                                doritos are great for kindling

                                                                                                  use nail polish to identify different keys

                                                                                                    use a hanging shoe rack to store cleaning supplies

                                                                                                      freeze grapes to chill white wine without

                                                                                                        use paper clips to organize your cables

                                                                                                          almost finished your jar of nutella

                                                                                                            sick of having a box full of tangled

                                                                                                              unroll the rim to increase the capacity

                                                                                                                cut open toilet paper rolls and use as a cuff

                                                                                                                  remove the stem from strawberries

                                                                                                                    turn an old bottle into a simple little cord holder

                                                                                                                      for iced coffee and iced cappuccino, use frozen coffee cubes

                                                                                                                        how to fold a fitted bed sheet

                                                                                                                          tired of snoozing past your alarm

                                                                                                                            place a rubber band around an open paint can to wipe your brush on

                                                                                                                              ut a wooden spoon across a boiling pot

                                                                                                                                use bread clips to save flip-flops

                                                                                                                                  take pictures of friends holding items

                                                                                                                                    how i always know which headphone is the left one

                                                                                                                                      put a stocking over the end of a vacuum

                                                                                                                                        How to make sure you drink enough water

                                                                                                                                          user a can opener to open blister

                                                                                                                                            good sandwich guide

                                                                                                                                              turn your muffin pans upside down

                                                                                                                                                50 pounds of groceries and living on the 5th floor

                                                                                                                                                  the right way to make a blt

                                                                                                                                                    add one teaspoon of baking soda

                                                                                                                                                      38

                                                                                                                                                        hair straighteners equals to collar irons

                                                                                                                                                          stack your clothes vertically to see them all

                                                                                                                                                            the right way to make cookies in the summer

                                                                                                                                                              how to clean a blender

                                                                                                                                                                the right way to eat a popsicle

                                                                                                                                                                  use bread clips to label and organize power cords

                                                                                                                                                                    to get the built up residue off of your shower head

                                                                                                                                                                      user a hair clip to orgainize long wires

                                                                                                                                                                        a frozen saturated sponge in a bag

                                                                                                                                                                          rub stuck zipper teeth with a graphite pencil

                                                                                                                                                                            use a soda pop tab

                                                                                                                                                                              50

                                                                                                                                                                                51 How to multiply large numbers in your head.

                                                                                                                                                                                  52 How to open a bottle if you dont have a corkscrew.

                                                                                                                                                                                    rub a walnut on damaged wooden furniture

                                                                                                                                                                                      kids fall out of bed

                                                                                                                                                                                        use toothpaste to clear up hazy car

                                                                                                                                                                                          58

                                                                                                                                                                                            59 keep pizza out while driving home

                                                                                                                                                                                              60 put your straw through the tab to keep it from rising

                                                                                                                                                                                                hold oreos with a fork so your fingers

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Never lose your remotes again

                                                                                                                                                                                                    hiding your emergency money

                                                                                                                                                                                                      use a bread tab to hold your spot on a roll

                                                                                                                                                                                                        if you are at a hotel and run out of chargers

                                                                                                                                                                                                          keep a square of cardboard in a ziplock bag

                                                                                                                                                                                                            If you need to pee or smoke at a bar

                                                                                                                                                                                                              drill holes in the bottom of your garbage

                                                                                                                                                                                                                use an accented letter as your passcode

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  use a squeeze ketchup bottle top with your shopvac

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    do something unusual when locking the door

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      when heating leftovers space out a circle in the middle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        dont burn yourself in those hard to reach candles

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          put a small amount of water in a glass when you microwave your pizza

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            75 use a piece of paper to organize

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              use half a pool noodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                pencil case to store cables

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  78 clothespin to hold nail

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    79 make blts

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      80 take a picture of your fridge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        81 fill plastic water bottles

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          82 right ways to eat chips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            99 if your plug keeps failing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              100 put the banana on the wire

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                88 before you throw away a post it

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Source: Reddit LifeProTips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  There you go, 100 awesome life hacks that you can try right now to make your life a lot easier!

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