One of the most economical moves you will ever make in your life is packing your own lunch. Bold statement, but brown bag sandwich it can save the average Joe $20-$30 a week. That’s about $100 a month or a whopping $1,200 a year… Math. Anyways, the Economical Chef is all about saving money, so we get excited about opportunities like this one. Making the perfect lunch is like the World Series of saving money for the EC. So lets dive in and learn how you can have the lunch that kids will want to trade all their Oreos for:
Brown Bag Sandwich
Ingredients of brown bag sandwich (5 servings):
- 1 loaf of wheat bread Buy on Amazon.com
- 1 lb of lunch meat – chicken or turkey
- 1 pack of deli sliced cheddar cheese – the sharper the better
- 1 bottle of yellow or dijon mustard
- 1 head of Boston bib lettuce (or whatever lettuce your over-picked grocery store has)
- 1 avocado
- Get out two slices of bread and place them next to each other on a plate. That was a hard.
- Wash a couple crisp lettuce leaves and pat them thoroughly dry. Layer half of the lettuce on the first slice of bread.
- Now, spread your mustard on top of the lettuce you just laid down. Putting the lettuce inbetween the condiment and bread stops the bread from getting soggy.
- Next, take 2-3 slices of lunch meat – or about 0.1 lbs – and layer it down on top of the lettuce and mustard.
- Continue stacking – place the rest of the lettuce on top of this lunch meat. Layering the lettuce and lunch meat gives your sandwich more crunch and freshness.
- Take another 2-3 slices of lunch meat – 0.1 lbs – and layer it on top of the second lettuce pile.
- Place a slice of cheese on top of it all.
- Finally, slice up 1/5 of an avocado and place/smear it on the other piece of untouched bread
- Carefully flip the avocado bread on top of the sandwich stack and……
- ….the sandwich is DONE.
The ingredients will stay fresh all week, except for maybe the avocado. Once you slice it open, you have two options:
- Slice the rest of the avocado into strips and put it in a Tupperware in the fridge with some lemon juice
- Mash up the rest of the avocado into your favorite guac – again in a Tupperware, with lemon juice, in the fridge.
Either of these options should keep it fresh all week and allow you to continue to use the superfood for your daily sandwich.
- $3 – 1 loaf bread
- $8 – 1 lb of quality deli lunch meat (substantially cheaper if you buy pre-packed)
- $3 – 1 package of deli cheese
- $3 – 1 bottle of mustard
- $2 – 1 head of lettuce
- $1.25 – 1 avocado
- $20.25 – grand total
- $4.05 – per sandwich
Once again, the economics check out. I’ll break this one down a little further for you too. Once you have that bottle of mustard, it will last you another 4-6 weeks, so your next go around on sandwiches will cost you $17.25 total or only $3.45 per sandwich. Bottom line, even at the cheapest of sub shops like Jimmy Johns you will end up paying close to $7-8 per sandwich – and while its fast it does not pack half the freshness as the sandwich you just made above.