Snacks and Meals to Fuel Your Body This School Year at College
By: Sina Teskey, RD, LD, CSO
School is officially back in session. Whether you live on campus or off-campus it is still important to think about how you can prepare for the school year in regard to nutrition. With schedules varying each day and lots of studying you will want to be prepped with snacks and easy meal ideas to make packing for class simple and quick. Here are some snack ideas to toss in your bag before you head out.
- Think protein at snacks. Pre-packaged nuts or trail mix can be great when you have a longer period of time before your next meal.
- Add Fruit. Don’t want that banana mushing in your bag? Try dried fruit, canned fruit, apples, oranges, fruit leather, or fruit snacks.
- Stock up on grains that taste good and provide you with the energy you need for learning. Try Luna bars, Cliff bars, cereal bars, mini bags of goldfish or other crackers, chips, or put cereal in a zip lock bag to take with you.
- Wanting some calcium? String cheese or yogurt can be packed if you plan to eat it in the hour after you leave your house. Otherwise, try the non-refrigerated pudding packs or calcium-fortified hot chocolate packets.
Not only are snacks important but quick meals will also be important for busy days. Take a look at a few sample ideas below.
- Peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a side of cottage cheese and some veggies and dip
- Tuna/Egg or Chicken salad sandwich with veggies and dip
- Spaghetti with store-bought pesto, chicken, and vegetables
- Tuna Melt (mix tuna with mayonnaise, lay on toasted bread add a slice of cheese to the top and broil in the oven until the cheese melts)
- Scrambled eggs with veggies and cheese (try spinach and feta) and have with a piece of buttered toast
- English muffin pizzas (layer an English muffin with sauce, cheese, and your favorite pizza toppings and broil or bake until warmed and toasted)
- Frozen burritos or dinners. Make sure to add to this as it will not be a complete meal. Try a side of cottage cheese, baked chips, and/or fruit with it.
- Use a Rotisserie Chicken to make a wrap or add to the top of a salad. Pair the salad with a dinner roll or toast and croutons.
- Frozen pizza with a side salad.
The important thing to remember is to properly fuel your body to take you through your day and plan ahead so food is available in your backpack and at home. Ensuring adequate nutrition will help you gain the knowledge you need for a successful school year. If you feel like you are delaying meals or skipping snacks and/or meals it may be a good time to check back in with your Emily Program team! That’s what we are here for.