Realistic Lunch Ideas for Jamaicans

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In the spirit of a #betteryou January and saving more this month + year on a whole. I decided to carry lunch! I started last week and only lasted up to Thursday as I ran out of food by then and I thought with better planning I would be able to last the entire week.

I did what any millennial would do and turned to Google to help with some suggestions; the only issue is the things they recommended are things I have no interest in eating or could find here in Jamaica that wouldn't cost an arm and a leg to purchase all the ingredients. No shade to vegans and vegetarians but Avocado toast or Quinoa with Asparagus are things that are not on my menu. I enlisted the help of my sister who is a seasoned "lunch-carrier" and came up with the ideas below. 

The area where I work is more of an upscale "food area" so lunch is anywhere between $1,500 - $2,000(Jamaican Dollars) per day and even more -- or I have to drive into Half-Way Tree which usually takes an hour because of Traffic to get cheaper meals and that is counter-productive because of gas. With me taking lunch to work I will be able to save $5000-$6000 per week -- fingers crossed.


If you live in Jamaica and are looking for clever yet realistic lunch Ideas I hope these will help.

On My Shopping List

- Ground Beef
- Chicken Breast Tenderloin
- Shrimp with tail On
- 2 Tins of Sausage (Chicken - regular + hot and spicy)
- String Beans
- Potatoes
- Spaghetti
- Seasoning (Chicken seasoning, Jamaican All-Purpose)
- Spanish Rice Packet ( Zatarans's Brand)

There were some things I had leftover from last week, for example, a Ragu Sauce, Sweet Peppers, Mixed + Frozen Vegetables and Fettucine noodles which I will be using this week as fill-ins. I also bought juices, water, and snacks so I won't be spending a dollar on food this week.



Monday

Image Source: Delish.com | All rights reserved
Spaghetti + Meatballs



Tuesday

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Curried Shrimp with Mashed Potatoes and String Beans



Wednesday

Image Source: Tatanya's Everyday

Sausage + Veggie Pasta with Fettucine Noodles (using the Ragu Sauce)



Thursday

Image Source: Delish.com
Shrimp Fried Rice



Friday

Image Source: Yelp.com | All Rights Reserved

Grilled Chicken Breast with Baked Potatoes + Veggies on the side ( a combination of all the leftover Vegetables) 


The trick here is to purchase items that can create a variety of dishes. The shrimp, for example, is very versatile. It can be curried, fried, combined with pasta or turned into fried rice. In the coming months, I will be meal prepping to save time as I have to cook the meals the night before to take to work, so I will be purchasing glass storage containers from Amazon which will be way cheaper than purchasing here in Jamaica.

Another thing I will be implementing is to change the menu each week, I don't want it to become monotonous and I also want it to be fun and exciting and not become boring and a burden because I'm saving.

I would like to hear from you .. what are some of your favorite things to prepare for work to save money. And how much have you saved since taking lunch to work on a monthly basis?

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