Make Lunch-Packing Easier

I know the benefits of bringing your own lunch to work every day (saving money, eating healthier), but most days I simply lack the motivation. Here are some tricks I’m going to try to make it more enticing.

Verve-lunch-bag-R-3 1. Update your bag. Carrying lunch in a fun food tote (like the ones from will make you feel like you’re part of the cool, eco-minded crew. 2. Try a bento box. Break the boredom by filling a Japanese-inspired lunch box in visually creative ways. Check out the site for amazing ideas (see photo at right…who would’ve thought you could have pizza and lasagna in one lunch box?).

3. Make a lunch with a universal appeal. If you’re fixing lunch for someone else in your family, might as well pack your own bag at the same time. Make just one basic that everyone will enjoy, like egg salad or pita pizzas. Same goes for snacks: string cheese is an easy, crowd-pleasing toss-in.

Realsimple-cucumber-soup_300 4. Or, flip the script and upgrade your lunch. Get inspired by Europeans and make lunch the most important meal of the day. Whip up easy but sophisticated brown-bag lunches, like this cool cucumber soup recipe, pictured left. (See more Real Simple lunch recipes.) Make enough to have leftovers for dinner.

5. Start a lunch co-op. Imagine having to make lunch only once a week (granted, you’re making larger portions), but having a home-cooked meal all week. Talk to your coworkers about organizing a lunch crew where you all benefit.

What do you bring for lunch? How do you motivate to pack it? Share your tips here.