Like every college student, I struggle with eating healthy daily. I have the power to eat whatever, whenever I what, which is quite different than back at home where Mom does the grocery shopping. In addition to this, complete freedom has limited space. All I have refrigerator-wise is a small 2x2x2 mini-fridge that I happen to share with my two other roommates. This causes a bit of a limitation for healthy eating. Yet another issue is that I’m a picky eater. Not in the sense that I don’t try new things, but that I like to feel full while eating healthy, which doesn’t exactly happen when all you eat is vegetables.
I went to my local grocery store (shoutout Kroger) the other day with the intention of only getting healthy goodies. I decided to do my best to acquire some healthy snacks in order to A) snack without leaving my dorm and B) avoid junky food. I’ve decided to share what I purchased and how I plan to pair them for multiple snacks!
First, my shelf-stable snacks.
|12 Grain Bread, Pretzel Thins, SmartPop! Popcorn, Toasted Sour Cream & Onion Chips, Cheez-It Snack Mix, Oatmeal|
I bought a smaller loaf of bread because I doubt I can go through a whole one without it going bad first (I know from experience). Pretzel thins are such a great snack because they can go with everything and they’re relatively healthy (compared to potato chips, etc.). I wanted popcorn, so I opted for the healthier version, SmartPop. I’ve tried the whole Skinny Pop thing, but it just doesn’t compare to the microwave kind. The toasted chips were an impulse buy, but I checked out the nutrition info, and the calories aren’t bad and neither is the sodium. That’s a win in my book. Next is the Cheez-It Snack Mix. This was one of my guilty pleasures during winter break, where I ended up eating a whole box in 24 hours. I don’t exactly consider that healthy, so I knew I needed a better method. The 100 calorie snack sizes are the perfect solution. I can limit how much I’m eating but still enjoy the cheesy goodness. And finally, the oatmeal. I’m not enough of an early riser to go grab breakfast before classes, but not having breakfast isn’t a good idea, so I opted for microwave oatmeal. It’s fast, easy, and relatively healthy.
|Peanut Butter & Cookie Butter|
Peanut butter is always good for college students to keep in their stash because it’s a quick, easy source of protein. In addition to this, I highly suggest Cookie Butter, which can only be found at Trader Joe’s. Just imagine cookie batter, but better. It’s truly life changing, and has a good source of protein as well!
|Wasabi & Soy Sauce Almonds|
These spicy little almonds are a great, healthy snack, without the bland, boring taste of plain almonds. Another delicious flavor is their Smokehouse almonds. Tastes like a yummy barbecue potato chip.
|Dark Chocolate Pomegranate|
Another guilty pleasure of mine. It’s necessary to keep a little emergency chocolate around (you know, for stress, period cravings, etc.) and this is my absolute favorite option.
And now for the mini fridge selection…
|Hummus, Cucumber Dill Greek Yogurt Dip, Baby Carrots|
|Laughing Cow Creamy Swiss Cheese|
This stuff is seriously heavenly. They come in cute little wedges, which is perfect for keeping proportions, and is the best with pretzels.
|Organic Mozzarella Sticks|
String cheese is the perfect snack for on-the-go, and is a great source of calcium!
Because who doesn’t love a good avocado?!
|Dasani Sparkling Lime Water|
Okay, so this Dasani Lime is my new favorite. I don’t really drink soda, so this is the perfect fix for when I want a little carbonation, but not the gross things soda has in it. And zero calories = score!
And now, for some of the pairings using my new goodies:
Other helpful hints:
*Do make a list before you go. My roommate is a great (or bad?) example of this. She’ll go to the grocery store with no list at all and just sort of grab what she feels like. Not good. (Don’t worry, she gave me permission to publicly out her.)
*Don’t go to the store hungry. You’ll stay away from things you should be eating and find yourself getting junky, unhealthy foods.
*Check what you already have. What’s the point of buying brand new peanut butter when you already have a half of a jar already? Duh.
*Know what you don’t like. I know I don’t really prefer to snack on apples, as healthy as they are, so I don’t buy them because they’ll go to waste.
*Proportions, proportions, proportions. The Cheez-Its above? Yeah, I know they’re not that healthy for you, but I love them, so I opted for the 100 calorie packs to keep myself controlled (even if I do eat 2 at a time, shhhhh). And the baby carrots? They’re also in proportions so I can open one and not let the others spoil or anything!
*And finally, thank your roommates for letting you takeover a part of the fridge! I know I basically took over 2/3 of the fridge, but my roommates don’t have anything in the fridge at the moment, so it’s working out well!
Happy shopping, Mini-Fridgers! I know it can be so tempting to just opt for ramen and pizza bagels, but think of your body! It wants healthy food! What is your favorite healthy snack? Comment below!