Baon on a Budget: One Week of Recipes + a Shopping List

Some dishes cost under P20 per serving!


When it comes to baon, or packed lunches, many things come into play: the meal should be affordable, easy to pack, easy to eat, and should be able to last a few hours tucked away into a brown bag instead of, like a regular meal, eaten freshly cooked. Baon should also be nutritious and be appealing to eat (especially when it comes to kids!). 

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With a bit of prep, you can go healthy with your packed meals.


We checked prices of ingredients across several groceries and broke down the costs of some of our favorite baon- and budget-friendly recipes. Some cost under 20 pesos per serving to prepare! We also prepared a shopping list for your next trip to the grocery store. 


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Shop, prep, and pack! Baon has never been easier with these lunch recipes.



1 Pinoy Bistek


Pinoy-style beef steak, or bistek, is a baon go-to because it keeps well for hours. This is because it’s cooked in soy sauce, an ingredient also known for its preservative qualities. Use thinly-sliced beef to make this dish!



Next to adobo, bistek is one of the most common baons for kids and adults because it keeps well for hours.


Recipe cost breakdown:


Total cost P175 

Recipe yield 4

Cost per serving P44



2 Fusilli with Chicken and Broccoli


This pasta has a good mix of carbs, protein, and vegetables. It’s easy to prep, too! All you have to do is toss everything in a pan until it comes together.


If you find this oil-based pasta dish a little dry, try adding a spoonful or two of bottled pesto.


Recipe cost breakdown:


Total cost P149

Recipe yield 4

Cost per serving P20



3 Barbecue Chicken Fried Rice


Use leftover rice to prep your packed lunches! A barbecue sauce can put everything together—it’s an ingredient that also keeps well for hours.


For baon-worthy fried rice, mix in your fave barbecue chicken!


Recipe cost breakdown:


Total cost P76

Recipe yield 4

Cost per serving P19



4 Roast Chicken Salad Sandwich


This sandwich is a baon classic. One hack we love to use? Instead of making roast chicken from scratch, buy already-cooked roast or rotisserie chicken from your nearest grocery. You can also save the leftovers from your last weekend roast!


For more flavor, toss leftover roast chicken skin into the mix.


Recipe cost breakdown:


Total cost P315

Recipe yield 4

Cost per serving P79 




5 Pinwheel Bites


Kids will love these for baon! It’s a creative way to serve the regular ham and cheese sandwich. Don’t forget to use whole wheat or whole grain bread!


Make snacking fun for your little ones!


Recipe cost breakdown:


Total cost P25.98

Recipe yield 2

Cost per serving P13


Shopping list:


Beef, thinly sliced

Roast chicken

Chicken breast


White onions

Bell pepper






Sliced ham

Sliced cheese

Fusilli pasta

Whole wheat bread

White bread



Pantry staples:



Ground black pepper

Oil, for frying

Olive oil, for sautéing


Soy sauce

Garlic powder

Fish sauce (patis)

Barbecue marinade




Additional research by Cess Yu  


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Baon prep has never been easier!

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