Preparing your own meals for work is one of the cost-saving strategies and healthiest choices you can make. But the thing is, preparing your own work lunch can get a bit challenging, especially if you don’t know how to pack it well.
So, how can you systematize your meal preps while keeping your work lunch stylish? The secrets are your packing habits and office lunch box!
Having a system, and knowing how to maximize your lunch box will allow you to have a more organized lunch every time. Plus, with the right lunch buddy, you can stay stylish, too!
So, read on and learn some packing tips to make your meal preps more efficient, and your office lunch looking more polished than ever.
Plan your meals ahead
The first step in making meal preps much easier and more efficient is to plan ahead. Having a weekly meal plan is a practical technique because you no longer have to waste time searching for work lunch ideas.
When it comes to meal planning, though, aim for variation. This will prevent you from getting bored with your office lunch and resort to buying expensive meals at restaurants or fast food chains.
One of the strategies that you can do is to make a list of packable lunch foods and break them down into different categories. You can make a list of easy-to-pack sandwiches, snacks or treats, desserts, fruits, and veggies.
When packing these food items, consider what you like as well, and then rotate through the lists. Also, make sure that you stock up on the ingredients that you need for your office lunches before your work week starts.
This is an efficient technique because you get to eat a variety of nutritious foods that you actually would love to eat for lunch. It also makes meal preps much simpler as opposed to having no plans at all.
Designate a lunch packing station
Once you’ve planned your weekly meals, it’s time to designate an area that will serve as your lunch packing station within your kitchen. Having a specific place to prepare your meals will also make meal preps more efficient.
If you’re uncertain which kitchen spot you should assign as your lunch packing station, find a free space between your pantry and fridge.
This way, you won’t have to walk back and forth your kitchen to get a specific food item or supply. Everything that you need from the fridge and pantry will be just within your reach.
Also, it helps to have drawers specifically designated for the items you’ll use in packing your lunches for the entire week. In here, you can store crackers, nuts and seeds, trail mix, and non-perishable snacks.
You can also purchase bins for your fridge that can hold your pre-packed sandwiches, cheese sticks, fruits and veggies, yogurt, and healthy drinks.
You can fill these drawers and bins over the weekend so that when the work week comes, you can pick what you need without so much hassle.
Create a guideline for a healthy, balanced lunch
Now that you’ve already figured out what to pack for the whole week and designated an area where all the meal preps will happen, you can proceed with the next step: create a guideline.
So, what is this guideline for and why is it important to have one? Creating a healthy eating guideline is crucial for your meal preps because it reminds you to pack a well-balanced lunch.
During hectic mornings, it’s convenient to grab just about anything from the fridge and pantry. But this may hurt your healthy eating goals.
Having a guideline will help ensure that you’re sticking with a balanced, nutritious diet even when you’re rushing in the morning. You can post this instruction near your lunch packing station, which is ideally between your pantry and fridge.
It must include what types of items you must throw in your lunch box each day including your main dish, fruit and/or veggie, healthy snacks like nuts and seeds, and dessert.
You can even make it more efficient by detailing how much should you prepare or get per category. For example, you can indicate in your guide that you have to pick one nutritious snack from the drawer, and one whole fruit from the fridge.
Ticking off everything from the guideline will help ensure you’ll savor a satisfying, balanced lunch every single time.
Make time for your meal preps
After preparing your meal plans and packing station, and crafting your balanced eating guidelines, you can now move forward with preparing your meals.
You’d want to make time to do this because it will help a lot in saving time and cutting costs. Many people strategize with this by preparing certain components of their packed lunches on Sunday.
This meal prep doesn’t need to be too tedious. In fact, it’s best to keep it simple. These steps that you’ll take, no matter how basic they seem, will make lunch packing easier every morning.
For instance, you can do certain tasks ahead of time such as washing and cutting fresh produce like fruits and veggies, or packing nuts and seeds for your snacks ahead of time.
Any chore that you can do over the weekend will make lunch packing more efficient and hassle-free during the work week.
Buy a high-quality lunch box
When packing your lunches for work, it’s important to not only pay attention to the quality of foods you’ll prepare but where you place them, too. But what constitutes a high-quality lunch box?
Over the years, controversy surrounded lunch boxes and other items containing BPA (bisphenol A), an industrial chemical that has been linked to various health risks including cancer, cognitive and behavioral problems, and heart issues.
If you want to have peace of mind on food safety, a BPA-free lunch box is your best bet. Other than this, you’d also want to look for other features that will allow you to have a more stylish and organized work lunch.
A high-quality lunch box is made from high-quality materials, free of harmful compounds like BPA, lead, and mercury, and is a total package. This means it’s got all you need such as utensils, extra containers, and food dividers.
Food separators and removable pots help a lot in organizing your lunches. These features will help prevent your foods from getting mixed up, preserving your meals’ taste quality and freshness.
They also allow you to control your meal portions and enjoy a variety of food while keeping them organized. For example, you can put nuts or seeds on the extra container, and use the divider to separate rice from a side dish.
A high-quality lunch box is also aesthetically pleasing. It doesn’t need to be super grand, but it’s something you can be proud to flaunt anywhere. It’s simple yet stylish, functional, and convenient to use.
If you’re looking for a lunch box that ticks all of these, you can consider buying the Karma lunch kit. It has its own cutlery set, thermal case, divider, and extra removable container, perfect for efficient lunch packing.
Even better, it looks slick and stylish, too! Its minimalist design makes it a great fit for your chic or dapper lifestyle. Put simply, you can enjoy a balanced lunch and convenient eating in a very sleek way.
Organize your lunch boxes and lunch packing supplies
It’s also important to keep your lunch containers and packing supplies organized. To do this, keep them in one place, so you’ll know exactly where to grab the items you need for packing your lunch.
Once you’ve identified your lunch packing station, designate a specific drawer or place within your meal prep area where you can put your food containers, utensils, lunch bags, and napkins.
For example, you can place your lunch boxes, sandwich container, and tumblers on a shelf. After use, and once you’ve cleaned them up, make sure to put them back where you got them, so they’re readily available for next use.
Designating a particular space for your lunch packing supplies and containers will also make meal preps much easier and hassle-free.
Pack your lunch at night
Packing lunches at night is a technique many people find useful. This prevents chaotic mornings by saving a lot of time and effort as you prepare to head for work.
The trick is to prepare and pack your lunch the night before. It’s even better if you can pack leftovers from dinner.
If you’re already beat by the end of the day, you can simply transfer your leftovers to your lunch box and place it in the fridge. In the morning, you can simply grab your lunch box, and reheat your food during your lunch break.
Bringing your own food to work is an effective way to save money and eat healthier meals and snacks. To make it more rewarding for you, you have to make sure your work lunch is kept organized and polished.
With the help of efficient packing techniques and a reliable office lunch box, you can achieve this goal. So, start adopting these habits into your lunch packing routine, and savor a stylish and organized work lunch every time.