The Best Meal Deals for Students In 2023
Learning how to budget and to cook are two of the biggest lessons you’ll learn as a student. We’ve offered you some help before in how to make delicious meals for students that are cheap and easy but there are always meal deals around that you should look to take advantage of.
The odd treat meal is always advised, we don’t want you to have a boring student life with no fun, but for the everyday lunchtime, take the guess work out of what you’re going to have.
Give yourself as much time as possible to relax before starting your afternoon lectures and go for the best meal deals around.
Here is our guide on the best meal deals for students to make the most of in 2023…
Top Lunchtime Meal Deals
If you choose to make your lunchtime meals from scratch and take them with you, you’ll always save money.
Sometimes though, you haven’t got the time, or you just want to have something you’ve not made yourself.
For lunchtime meal deals, all the main supermarket chains will have some variation of this, where you can pick up a sandwich or a wrap, a snack, and a drink, all for just a few £££s.
If you are looking to impress a date or buy in for your university friends, there are some great meal deal options at places like Marks & Spencer that you can use for dinner.
1. Tesco Meal Deals
The meal deal is £3.90 in all Tesco stores across the country but £3.40 with a Clubcard and will save you around 50% when choosing the most expensive available items.
The meal deal consists of one main, a snack and a drink of your choosing.
A Tesco lunchtime meal deal is incredible, as if you go in at the right time there are seemingly countless combinations possible, including the Plant Chef range and all the meaty favourites within the original Tesco sandwich range.
Don’t forget, if you’ve signed up for a Tesco Clubcard, you’ll get a huge discount and points that seem like you’re making a saving of about 95%.
In fact, going to Tesco without a Clubcard is criminal, the savings are that good!
2. Sainsbury’s Meal Deals
The meal deal at Sainsbury’s cost £3.50 in all stores nationwide, and if you are clever and choose what would normally be the most expensive items, you can save around 50%.
You can choose between pastas, wraps, sandwiches snacks and drinks within this deal.
The best thing about the Sainsbury’s meal deal is that it includes their hot food range and not just cold sandwiches.
This means you can now take advantage of the in-store bakery and buy croissants, doughnuts, alongside a choice of steak and potato slices and the other filling warm items.
Don’t forget to scan your nectar card when shopping at Sainsburys, you’ll get points each time you shop!
3. Co-op Meal Deals
The Co-op meal deal is £3.50 in all stores nationwide for members (apart from some petrol station Co-op locations), and for non-members its £4.
There is a really good range of choices from the Co-op, and for us their crisps are top tier and the best out of all the supermarket own-brand crisps.
The vegan soup range is outstanding and there is a good choice of sides, including the Ginster range of pasties and sausage rolls etc.
In fact, if you are clever with your choice of side it could make for a good lunchtime meal tomorrow, saving you even more money.
A further student discount gives you an extra 10% off the price of the meal deal, whilst a combination of some of the most expensive items could save you up to 50% against the normal retail prices.
4. Boots Meal Deals
The Boots meal deal is £3.99 for all stores outside of London, and £4.99 within London and airport Boots.
There are always loads of choice in Boots, including triple packs of BLTs and chicken sandwiches, the Naked range of drinks and an expansive vegetarian and vegan range.
For us, the Boots meal deal has always come in handy when we’re taking a train or a bus journey, but it could easily become a staple part of your daily lunchtime routine as a student.
5. Too Good to Go
Too Good to Go is the forward-thinking app that helps to reduce food waste and gets you a lush meal for a bargain price.
The idea is that local restaurants, cafés, bakeries, and grocery shops, list ‘magic bags’ on the app that will include any food or items that are leftover and would only go to waste if they are not picked up.
You’ll find chains like Pret and Greggs on there, as well as local independent eateries in your town.
There are often only a select few bags each day for each location, so you can make a list of your favourites and keep an eye on them every day.
You’ll have a time slot of an hour or two to collect your magic bag, and it will be a surprise as to what you get, but at a fraction of the price you’d pay for the item usually (on average you’ll pay around £4 for items that should cost £12.
There is obviously risk that you might end up with a poor bag, but most of the time it is magic, a surprise lunch deal where you’re helping reduce food waste!
6. M&S Meal Deals
This is a fancy treat that is great if you have invited a date round for dinner to your student flat, or you want to cook something nice as a treat for your flatmates or course mates.
The ‘Dine in for Two’ offer has been a staple for many years now, and although it isn’t necessarily student budget friendly and something you could do all the time, it is fantastic every now and then.
The original offer is £12 for two people where you get to choose a main dish, a side dish, and one of either a starter or a dessert.
Currently, you’ll find a ‘Pizza Night Dine In’ from M&S that is perfect for a student night in. You can pick up two stonebaked pizzas and two sides for just £12. This includes vegan and gluten-free pizza options, and sides such as mac ‘n’ cheese bites, dirty fries, and more.
Is there anything better than a couple of big pizzas, soft drinks, and a movie night? We don’t think so, get on down to M&S and pick up some pizza pie for a cosy night in.
The meal deal at Morrisons has to be one of our favourites, because you’re able to get 1 main, 1 snack and 1 drink for £3.50-£4.
We know what you’re thinking, what’s so good about that? Well, you’re also able to choose a main from the salad bar, which includes a medium sized salad box.
The medium salad box is usually £2.99 on its own, but with this lunchtime deal, you can get it for £3.50 or £4.
We always go for a Naked smoothie to get the most from our money, it’s gotta be done!
On top of the great meal deals you can see above, don’t forget that you can also get a student discount alongside of, or instead of, meal deals if you flash your student ID at the point of purchase.
For instance, in some retailers like the Co-Op, you can get a 10% discount on all food orders if you show your student ID.
For those of you who love a savoury snack from the nation’s favourite bakery Greggs (this is fact right?), you can get one of the following items for free when buying their lunchtime sandwich deal:
- Greggs sausage roll
- Vegan sausage roll
- Cheese and onion bake
- Sweet treat
Who doesn’t love a freebie?! Why not go with your flatmates and make the most of this super good deal.
We’re salivating just at the thought of it all. If there are other meal deals out there that are perfect for a student on the go, please let us know what you’ve found and we’ll be sure to pass on the good news!
If you enjoyed reading this blog, you should take a read of 10 Uni Kitchen Essentials You Need In 2023.