13th April is also known as National Make Lunch Count Day, an event created by TGI Fridays that promotes taking healthier lunch breaks during the work day, away from the desk.
According to research carried out by the well-known family restaurant, it was found that one third of workers eat at their desk everyday, with 73% having lunch at their desk at least twice a week.
Established in 2016, Make Lunch Count Day encourages workers to get away from their desks and even offices at lunch time, as relocating to a place not associated with work has been proven to improve your productivity and health. Taking a break away from the desk allows for a vital refresh in productivity, creativity and attention.
BUPA also reported that 43% of workers say that they’re often too busy to pause and take a proper break at lunchtime, especially with so many eateries in London coming with a long service wait.
But this definitely isn’t the case with every food joint. As hustle culture becomes more common, more and more London restaurants have started tailoring their services to busy workers. If that’s you, you might want to look at Propagrub’s roundup of the best quick lunches in London:
Located slap-bang in the middle of London’s financial district, Big Easy is an American barbecue restaurant, otherwise known as a ‘Bar.B.Q & Crabshack’. Served until 3pm, Big Easy’s “Hit & Run” menu promises to serve one course within 15 minutes, or you get it free of charge! Better yet, one course is only £10, with two being £15.
Before returning to work, you can get a taste of shrimp mac ‘n’ cheese, minute steaks, fajitas and more, with veggie options also available. Enjoy this speedy meal in Big Easy’s modern curve-shaped building, overlooking the Thames. Don’t work in Canary Wharf? Not to worry as Big Easy also has locations in Covent Garden, Chelsea, Westfield and Bluewater.
Locations: Canary Wharf, Covent Garden, Chelsea, Westfield, Bluewater
ROKA is an award-winning restaurant serving top-tier Japanese food all over the globe. Luckily for us Londoners, four of its branches can be found across the capital. Like Big Easy, you can visit ROKA in Canary Wharf, or experience ROKA in London’s media district, Fitzrovia, as well as Mayfair and Aldwych.
For those slightly longer lunch breaks, try ROKA’s lunch menu, which is said to be ordered and consumed within 45 minutes. Served from 12pm-3pm on weekdays, you can expect a selection of five dishes for the table and a dish of choice from the Robata grill for £36 per person, or £46 for premium. Being a more high-end option, ROKA’s lunches are perfect for when pay day rolls around.
Locations: Canary Wharf, Fitzrovia, Mayfair, Aldwych
If you work in Clapham, this authentic Thai restaurant is exactly what you need to break up your busy to-do list. Based on the High Street, The Pepper Tree serves Thai street food created by their all-Thai team of chefs, which you can experience within its charming canteen-style dining layout.
The Pepper Tree’s dishes have a ten-minute meal promise, which also applies to their set lunch menu on offer 12pm-5pm on weekdays. For £9.95, you can enjoy one starter and one main of traditional Thai flavours for an overall span of just 20 minutes. This includes small plates, curries, stir-fries, wok noodle dishes and more, freshly made to order. If we haven’t convinced you, take it from celebrity chef Rick Stein, who has previously confessed his love for this Clapham joint.
Location: Clapham’s High Street
If your daily commute takes you below the river, then this Southwark hidden gem is a great option for a quick lunch. Lokma is an authentic Turkish grill and bar that has everything one needs for a traditional Turkish feast.
For just £10, Lokma serves an express lunch menu, which offers mezzes, wraps, char-grills, moussaka and more for all those midday Turkish cravings. Lokma’s dishes will most definitely keep you full for the rest of the work day, so there’s no need for snacking distractions in the afternoon. There’s also a Shisha bar that you can come back to at the end of the day – you’ll be a regular in no time!
For those just wanting some cheap and cheerful fast food to take the edge off that Monday feeling, why not mix it up and try an alternative from the chains? Based in Baker Street, Battersea, Soho, Islington and more, Chick’n is an independent fast food restaurant serving up, you guessed it, a whole load of chicken. We’re talking tasty chicken in all forms: burgers, tenders, wings and more, along with dips and milkshakes. Meat-free burgers are also available.
Chick’n doesn’t need to have any kind of minute-based promise to convince you it’ll get the job done quickly, after all, it’s a fast food restaurant. But make sure to beat the queues by using their click and collect option. This way you can make your order in the office and have your food ready by the time you arrive. Just don’t bring it back to the office!!
Locations: Baker Street, Battersea, Soho, Islington, Wandsworth, Acton
Got some recommendations of your own? Share your favourite quick London lunches on the Propagrub app now.