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What is lunch called in London?

When you’re visiting London, you might be wondering what to call your midday meal. Is it lunch, dinner, or something else entirely? The answer may surprise you! In London, the midday meal is typically referred to as lunch, while dinner is reserved for the evening meal. However, there may be some regional variations and personal preferences. Let’s explore more about what lunch is called in London and the different ways it is enjoyed in this bustling city.

The Many Names of Lunch in London

London, the capital city of England, is one of the most vibrant and multicultural cities in the world. Given its diversity, it is no surprise that people have different names for lunch in London. In this section, we will explore the various names that Londoners use to refer to their midday meal.

What is Lunch?

Lunch is a meal that is typically eaten around midday or early afternoon. It is a time for people to take a break from work or school and refuel their bodies with nourishing food. In London, lunchtime begins at around noon and lasts until 2 pm.

Lunch in London

1. Lunch

The most common name for midday meal in London is simply lunch. This term is widely used across the UK and refers to any type of meal that is eaten around midday. It can be a quick snack or a sit-down meal at a restaurant.


2. Ploughman’s Lunch

The Ploughman’s lunch is a traditional British meal that consists of bread, cheese, and pickles. It is named after the ploughman, who would take this meal with him to the fields while he worked. Nowadays, it is a popular lunchtime option in London pubs.

Ploughman’s Lunch

3. Tea

In London, some people use the word “tea” to refer to their midday meal. This term is more commonly used by older generations and often refers to a light meal consisting of sandwiches and cakes. It is a tradition that dates back to the Victorian era.


4. Brekkie

Brekkie, short for breakfast, is a term that has become increasingly popular in London in recent years. Some people use it as a substitute for lunch, especially when they are having a light meal in the morning and do not feel hungry for a full lunch.


5. Snack

Snack is a term used to refer to a small meal or light bite that is eaten between meals. In London, people often use this term to refer to a midday meal that is smaller than a traditional lunch or consists of finger food.


6. Grazing

Grazing is a term that has become increasingly popular in London in recent years. It refers to the act of eating small portions of food throughout the day, rather than having three large meals. This approach to eating has become popular with those who are health-conscious and want to maintain a steady level of energy throughout the day.


7. Bento

Bento is a Japanese term that has become popular in London in recent years. It refers to a single-portion meal that is packed in a container and usually includes rice, meat, fish, and vegetables. It is a popular lunch option for those who want something healthy and filling.


8. Brunch

Brunch is a meal that combines breakfast and lunch and is usually eaten late in the morning or early in the afternoon. It is a popular weekend activity for Londoners who like to take their time and enjoy a leisurely meal.


9. Street Food

Street food is a popular lunchtime option for Londoners who are on the go or looking for something quick and delicious. London is renowned for its street food scene, offering a variety of international cuisines from food trucks and stalls scattered around the city.

London Street Food

10. Pack Lunch

Pack lunch is a term used to refer to a meal that is prepared at home and taken to work or school. It is a popular option for those who want to save money and eat healthy homemade food. Londoners often pack their lunch in lunchboxes or reusable containers.

Pack Lunch


There are many names for lunch in London, reflecting the city’s diverse culture and culinary traditions. Whether you prefer a sit-down meal, street food, or a packed lunch, there is no shortage of delicious and satisfying options available in the city.

What is Lunch called in London?

London, the capital city of England, is home to diverse cultures, cuisines, and customs. As such, it’s no surprise that the city has its own unique way of referring to that most important midday meal – lunch. In this article, we’ll explore what lunch is called in London, some of the popular lunch dishes, and some of the best places to enjoy lunch in London.

What is Lunch?

Lunch is traditionally the second meal of the day, following breakfast, and typically eaten during the middle of the day, usually between 12 pm and 2 pm. It generally consists of a light meal or a sandwich that can be eaten on the go. However, in London, the concept of lunch can be quite different, as it’s a time of day where people can enjoy more substantial, diverse, and cultural dishes.

Popular Lunch Dishes in London

In London, you can find a variety of dishes for lunch, from traditional British food to international cuisines. Some of the popular lunch dishes in London include:

1. Fish and Chips

Fish and chips are a staple of British cuisine and have been a popular lunch in London for over 150 years. The dish consists of battered and deep-fried fish served with thick-cut chips or French fries.

Fish and Chips

2. Pie and Mash

Pie and mash is a traditional East London dish that has been around for over 200 years. It consists of a pie served with mashed potatoes and gravy. The meat used in the pie varies, but steak and kidney, chicken, and vegetable are popular options.

Pie and Mash

3. Sandwiches

For a quick and easy lunch, Londoners often turn to sandwiches. You can find a wide variety of sandwiches, including egg and cress, coronation chicken, and classic ham and cheese.

Sandwich in London

4. Curry

London is home to a large South Asian community, and as such, curry is a popular lunch dish. You can find a variety of curries from different regions of India, including butter chicken, rogan josh, and vindaloo.

Curry in London

5. Afternoon Tea

Afternoon tea is a quintessentially British experience that involves a pot of tea, finger sandwiches, scones, and cakes. It’s often enjoyed as a leisurely lunch option in London, and there are many restaurants and hotels that offer afternoon tea service.

Afternoon Tea in London

Best Places to Enjoy Lunch in London

There are countless places in London to enjoy lunch, ranging from high-end restaurants to street food stalls. Here are some of the best places to enjoy lunch in London.

1. Borough Market

Borough Market is a food lover’s paradise and is home to a plethora of street food stalls and vendors offering a wide range of dishes from around the world. From fresh sushi to artisanal cheese, there’s something for everyone at Borough Market.

Borough Market London

2. Dishoom

Dishoom is a popular chain of restaurants that offer traditional Bombay-style cuisine. The menu includes dishes such as biryani, kebabs, and spicy lamb chops.

Dishoom London

3. The Wolseley

The Wolseley is a grand café-restaurant located in a beautiful art deco building in Piccadilly. The menu features classic European dishes, and the restaurant is known for its excellent service and elegant atmosphere.

The Wolseley London

4. Franco Manca

Franco Manca is a popular pizza chain with locations throughout London. They serve delicious sourdough pizzas made with high-quality, locally sourced ingredients.

Franco Manca London

5. St. John Bread and Wine

St. John Bread and Wine is a bakery and wine bar known for its simple, yet delicious dishes that showcase the best seasonal ingredients. The menu changes regularly, but you can expect dishes such as roasted bone marrow, rabbit stew, and sourdough bread.

St. John Bread and Wine London

In conclusion, lunch in London is a diverse, cultural, and substantial meal that offers a wide range of dishes and options for every taste. Whether you’re looking for a traditional British meal or an international cuisine, London has something for everyone. So, next time you’re in London, be sure to explore the city’s diverse lunch options and indulge in some of the best food the city has to offer.

What Are the Popular Lunch Foods in London?

London is known for its diverse culture and cuisine. Here’s what you can expect to find for lunch in the city:


Sandwiches are a staple lunch food in London. You can find them in almost every café or deli. The traditional sandwich filling includes cheese and ham, tuna mayonnaise, prawn mayonnaise, egg mayonnaise, and chicken. However, there are countless variations with different types of bread, sauces, and toppings. One of the most popular types of sandwiches in London is the bacon sandwich, consisting of bacon, either brown or red sauce, and buttered bread.

Bacon Sandwich London


Soup is another common lunch food in London. Although it’s a simple dish, it’s perfect for a quick and healthy lunch. You can find soup in almost every café or restaurant with different flavors such as mushroom, tomato, vegetable, and pumpkin. Most soups are served with bread or croutons to make it more filling, and some may even come with a side salad.

Tasty Soups London

Pie and Mash

Pie and mash is a traditional British dish that originated in London. It consists of a meat pie with mashed potatoes, parsley liquor, and sometimes, gravy on top. The most popular meat pie filling is beef, but there are also variations with chicken, lamb, or vegetables. You can find pie and mash shops all over London, and they are usually served with a side of jellied eels.

Pie and Mash London


Pizza is not traditionally British, but it has become a popular lunch option in London in recent years. You can find numerous pizza chains and independent pizzerias all over the city, each with their own unique toppings and flavors. Pizza can be a filling and satisfying lunch option that’s perfect for sharing with friends or colleagues.

Pizza London


Burgers are another popular lunch food that has been adopted in London. Most burger joints serve American-style burgers with beef, cheese, lettuce, tomato, and ketchup or mustard. However, some restaurants offer a more gourmet experience with unique toppings and flavors. Burgers are usually served with fries or onion rings on the side.

Burgers London

Food Ingredients
Sandwiches Bread, cheese, ham, tuna, prawn, egg, chicken, bacon
Soup Mushroom, tomato, vegetable, pumpkin
Pie and Mash Meat pie, mashed potatoes, parsley liquor, gravy
Pizza Dough, cheese, tomato sauce, various toppings
Burgers Beef, cheese, lettuce, tomato, ketchup, mustard

Overall, London offers a wide range of lunch options to satisfy any craving. Whether you’re in the mood for a traditional British dish or something more modern, you’ll find it in the city. So the next time you’re in London, be sure to try some of the delicious lunch foods that the city has to offer.

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That’s a Wrap!

Well, folks, we’ve arrived at the end of our little chitchat about London’s lunch lingo. Hopefully, you’ve enjoyed learning about the quirky names and funny phrases that locals use to refer to their midday meals. But before you go, we want to say a big thanks for stopping by. It’s been a pleasure having you here, and we hope you’ll come back again soon for another virtual adventure through the streets of London. Who knows what other gems we might uncover together next time? See you soon!

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