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3 Vegan Lunch Ideas for Broke College Students

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Navigating the world of veganism on a college budget can be challenging, but with a little creativity and resourcefulness, it's entirely possible to enjoy delicious and nutritious meals without breaking the bank. Whether you're a seasoned vegan or just starting to explore plant-based eating, these three budget-friendly lunch ideas are sure to satisfy your taste buds and keep your wallet happy.

Why You'll Love these Recipes

Budget-Friendly Ingredients: These recipes are designed with the college student's budget in mind. They utilize affordable ingredients that are easy to find at any grocery store or market, allowing you to enjoy delicious vegan meals without breaking the bank.

Quick and Easy Preparation: With busy schedules and limited time between classes, these recipes are perfect for students who need a quick and hassle-free meal option. They require minimal prep work and cooking time, so you can whip them up in a flash and get back to studying or socializing.

Nutritious and Filling: Despite their simplicity, these recipes are packed with nutrients and flavor. From protein-packed chickpeas to fiber-rich vegetables, each ingredient provides essential vitamins and minerals to keep you feeling satisfied and energized throughout the day.

Customizable Options: Feel free to get creative and personalize these recipes to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. Whether you prefer extra spice in your stir-fry or additional toppings in your wrap, these recipes serve as a versatile foundation for endless culinary experimentation.

Portable and On-the-Go: Perfect for taking to campus or enjoying between classes, these recipes are conveniently portable and easy to pack in your backpack or lunch bag. Say goodbye to expensive cafeteria meals or unhealthy fast food options – these homemade lunches are both wholesome and convenient.

1. Chickpea Salad Sandwich


  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons of vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped celery
  • 2 tablespoons of diced red onion
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Bread or sandwich rolls


  • In a mixing bowl, mash the chickpeas with a fork until they reach your desired consistency.
  • Add vegan mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, chopped celery, diced red onion, salt, and pepper to the mashed chickpeas. Mix until well combined.
  • Spread the chickpea salad onto bread or sandwich rolls to make sandwiches.
  • Serve with your favorite sandwich toppings, such as lettuce, tomato, avocado, or sprouts.

2. Veggie Stir-Fry with Rice


  • 1 cup of cooked rice (white, brown, or jasmine)
  • 1 cup of mixed frozen vegetables (such as carrots, peas, corn, and bell peppers)
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of grated ginger (optional)
  • Sriracha or chili flakes for heat (optional)
  • Chopped green onions for garnish (optional)


  • In a large skillet or wok, heat sesame oil over medium heat. Add minced garlic and grated ginger (if using) and sauté for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  • Add mixed frozen vegetables to the skillet and stir-fry for 5-7 minutes until they are heated through and slightly tender.
  • Stir in cooked rice and soy sauce or tamari. Continue to cook for another 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the rice is heated through and evenly coated with the sauce.
  • Remove from heat and season with sriracha or chili flakes for heat, if desired. Garnish with chopped green onions before serving.

3. Avocado and Black Bean Wrap


  • 1 large tortilla wrap (whole wheat or gluten-free)
  • 1/2 ripe avocado, mashed
  • 1/4 cup of canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons of salsa
  • Handful of spinach leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Lay the tortilla wrap flat on a clean surface. Spread mashed avocado evenly over the surface of the wrap.
  • Layer black beans, salsa, and spinach leaves on top of the mashed avocado.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Roll up the tortilla tightly, tucking in the sides as you go, to create a wrap.
  • Slice the wrap in half diagonally and serve immediately, or wrap it in foil or parchment paper to take it on the go.


Eating vegan on a college budget doesn't have to be bland or boring. With a little creativity and some affordable ingredients, you can whip up delicious and satisfying meals that are good for you and easy on your wallet. These three vegan lunch ideas are just the beginning – feel free to customize them with your favorite ingredients and get creative in the kitchen!

Happy Eating!

With Love,

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