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Top 6 Healthy Snacks for College Students


Finding healthy snacks for college students that don’t take long to make or break the bank can be difficult. Plus, a lot of healthy snacks can be – let’s face it – incredibly boring.

If you want to avoid the Freshman 15 and stay healthy in college, however, it’s important to find tasty snacks that will keep you satisfied and stave off your cravings for 2 a.m. pizza runs.

By adding more interesting ingredients to basic snack foods, college students can come up with healthy snacks that don’t taste like cardboard.

Waffles with …

The college student staple: Peanut butter! True, it’s not exactly low-calorie, so it might not seem like a healthy choice. However, the protein-carb combo is filling and gives you lots of energy, so this can keep you going for a few hours.

To make this snack as healthy as possible, stick to whole wheat waffles and natural peanut butter that doesn’t have a lot of added sugar or partially-hydrogenated oil.

An egg fixed to your liking is another high-protein, low-fat enhancer for a waffle. Eggs have previously been the victims of bad press, but a soft-boiled egg atop a whole-grain waffle is truly one of the best breakfasts, or lunches, you can prepare for yourself. Just try not to eat more than one egg yolk per day.

Garden veggies dipped in …

A great cheap and easy food that’s definitely healthy — raw veggies of any kind. Baby carrots are a perennial favorite: they’re a little more expensive, but you don’t have to wash and cut them (leaving you more time for study!)

Most people like their raw veggies with ranch dressing, but hummus is healthier and gives you some extra protein (something that many college students lack since most of them aren’t exactly sizzling up a steak every night!) — and it tastes just as good. Eggplant-based baba ganoush is another yummy dip option.

Apples, bananas and…

Easy to grab when you’re on the run and definitely healthy, apples and bananas are both good on-the-go snack options for students. Admittedly, they can get bland on their own. Apple slices with cheese is a good alternative.

Sprinkle some cinnamon on apple slices, or combine with peanut butter and chocolate chips for a sweet snack. Bananas with Nutella is another deliciously sweet option, though a bit pricier than good old peanut butter.

Mixed nuts to go…

Another travel-friendly healthy snack for college students, mixed nuts also offer protein and keep you full longer. Keep a jar handy and fill up a plastic baggy on your way out the door.

Add raisins or dried cranberries for some extra flavor and sweetness.

Yogurt with…

Yogurt gives you your dairy and protein without the fat and is a versatile snack — a great option that you can easily eat in your dorm room. Avoid the sugary snack-pack-style yogurts and try Greek yogurt.

Greek yogurt has become very popular, and for good reason. It’s delicious! It’s also great because you can mix it with loads of things, from fresh fruit and granola, to honey, sprinkles or – everyone’s favorite – chocolate chips.

Pretzels and…

Nearly every food we’ve mentioned works well with pretzels. Whether soft or crisp, pretzels are a classic snack. They are good on their own and they’re easy to store.

With practically no fat or added oils, pretzels are a healthy snack for college students who shudder at the current prices of chips and cookies. Enjoy with cheese, mustard, peanut butter, Nutella, hummus, apples … anything you can think of.

What is your favorite healthy college student snack?



7 Responses to “Top 6 Healthy Snacks for College Students”

  1. Elizabeth, 18, UCF Incoming Freshman Says:

    You mentioned 2 A.M. pizza cravings, and I have the PERFECT alternative: healthy (yes, healthy, or at the very least low-calorie) personal pizzas, whipped up in just a few minutes!

    Ingredients:
    Whole Wheat Tortillas (Check calorie count, and go with one under 100 calories. I’ve found some as low as 50 calories for a bit tortilla.)
    Canned Tomato Sauce (Not pizza or pasta sauce, just regular tomatoes. They have fewer calories and you can control the flavor. Buy the Great Value (walmart) or Publix brand…you’re gonna spruce it up!)
    Low-Calorie/Low-Fat String Cheese (The mozzarella kind is traditional, but these day they make string cheese from Colby Jack and everything else. Use what you like, but I definitely prefer mozzarella. It’s pizza!)
    Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Etc. (Spices, dried herbs, and seasonings are things you should always have on hand. They can be bought in bulk sizes, have zero calories, and are great for adding flavor to otherwise bland foods. Throw some of these in things like Ramen, Mac’n’Cheese, or even popcorn to keep your meals interesting!)
    No-Calorie sweetener or sugar (things like Splenda are expensive but are great when trying to lose weight. Iced Tea sweetened with Splenda actually counts as a water serving!)
    Toppings – fresh tomatoes, lunch meat, sausage, bell peppers, mushrooms…whatever you like. Branch out and try new things, you might be pleasantly surprised!

    Directions:
    1) Using a toaster oven, regular oven, broiler or gas-burning stove and a pair of tongs, crisp up your tortilla a bit over the heat. Set aside.
    2) Using a blender or food processor, pulse ONE stick of string cheese until it is in crumbles. If you don’t have a blender or food processor, you can either chop the cheese into small pieces or pull of strings. Cover tortilla with cheese. I like to reserve just a little and put it over my toppings.
    3) Add toppings.
    4) Place in oven, toaster oven, or microwave until cheese is melted and toppings are warmed slightly.
    5) Cut pizza and dip into pizza sauce – you eat much less sauce this way, which saves both calories and money!
    6) Enjoy alone or with a friend. Usually, one tortilla worth is too much for me!

  2. Ronen at University Language Says:

    Thanks Elizabeth! That sounds delicious! Definitely going to try that one out.

  3. College snack | Sektion31 Says:

    [...] Top 5 Healthy Snacks for College StudentsMar 14, 2011 … Healthy snacks for college students need to be cheap and easy, and – ideally – not taste like cardboard. Here’s 5 snacks to get you started. [...]

  4. Adjusting to “College Eating” | The Hawk Screech Says:

    [...] http://www.universitylanguage.com/blog/14/healthy-snacks-for-college-students/ Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. « What is Inspiration? [...]

  5. Ari Vinograd Says:

    I’d like to point out that 3/5 suggestions are raw foods (all the uncooked fruits and veggies already are)! The benefit to raw snacks is that they come with their own enzymes.. positive bacteria which helps us digest our food. This, in turn makes more of the nutrients absorb-able, providing better energy to study!

    - Ari Vinograd
    http://www.bodypure.com

  6. Joe Says:

    I’m sorry if I’m wrong, but this isn’t very healthy, is it? I mean, waffles? Pretzels?

  7. Kaytie at University Language Says:

    Hi Joe,

    Though we chose a more appealing picture for the waffles, we do suggest eating whole wheat waffles to make the snack healthier. Besides the possible carb overload, (everything in moderation!) there’s really no drawback to pretzels or waffles.

    Of course, ULS is simply offering suggestions, and none of this advice should take the place of a doctor or nutritionist.

    Thanks for reading!

    Kaytie at University Language

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