Between organization meetings, group projects, too many shifts at work and finding time to catch up on Stranger Things, it can seem impossible to find options aside from frozen meals and fast food to eat. With this in mind, we caught up with MizzouRec’s registered dietitian and got the scoop on what’s quick, easy and affordable to eat during our jam-packed semesters.
Breakfast – Yogurt parfait
Layer your favorite yogurt with fruit and granola
Lunch – Turkey and cheese sandwich, pita chips, carrot sticks
Snack – Protein balls
There’s tons of recipes out there with all sorts of ingredients. So whether you like peanut butter or protein powder or chia seeds (or all 3!), you’re bound to find a recipe for you. Our dietitian recommends searching on Pinterest for the perfect protein balls for your palette.
Dinner – Poached salmon
Mix a tablespoon of honey and olive oil, and spread the mixture onto the salmon. Season it with the seasoning of your choice, and it’s ready to cook! Salmon can be cooked on the stovetop, in the oven, or even in the microwave! If you choose to microwave, cook the piece in short intervals until it is thoroughly cooked.
Breakfast – Oatmeal with fruit
Lunch – Peanut butter and jelly sandwich, green snap peas with two tablespoons ranch dip, two small cookies
Snack – Popcorn
Dinner – Loaded potato or sweet potato
Another recipe that you can make in the microwave! Our dietitian recommends going light on the sour cream and cheese. In addition, she suggests cottage cheese as a healthier alternative for sour cream – YUM! Other great low calorie toppings include salsa and barbecue sauce.
Breakfast – Scrambled eggs
Did you know you can microwave eggs?! Lookin’ at you, friends still in the residence halls! Add cheese and your favorite flavorings to spice ’em up.
Lunch – Buffalo chicken sandwich
Add 2 Tbs of olive oil mayonnaise, 1 Tbsp (or to taste) buffalo chicken sauce and 1 Tbsp blue cheese (or cheddar cheese!) to 1/3 cup of canned chicken or pre-cooked grilled chicken. Mix it up, serve it on whole wheat bread and you’ve got a flavorful, protein-packed meal! For more flavor, you can add 2 Tbsp of chopped celery or diced tomato to this one.
Snack – Nuts
Peanuts, walnuts, almonds, oh my! You name it – all nuts are a great source of protein to power you through your busiest days.
Dinner – Beans and rice
Breakfast – Banana and frozen breakfast sandwich
Lunch – Quesadilla
Combine a tortilla/flatbread, cheese, and a protein like beans, chicken or beef, and vegetables like tomatoes, peppers, and green chilies. Microwave until the cheese has melted. Buying canned beans, chicken and/or tomatoes with chilies will shorten the amount of prep time required – a.k.a. more time to binge-watch that Netflix show you love!
Snack – Pita chips and humus or chips and salsa
Dinner – Pesto chicken
Microwave directions: place 3-4 oz frozen grilled chicken in the bottom of a bowl or plate. Top with 1 Tbsp store-bought pesto, 1-2 slices fresh tomato (or 1/4 cup canned diced tomato) and 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella. Microwave for about 2-3 minutes, or until heated through. Add 1/2 cup pasta or bread and a piece of fruit for a complete, healthy meal!
Breakfast – Breakfast bagel sandwich
1 whole wheat bagel + 1 slice of cheese + 1/4 avocado sliced + 1 slice of deli ham (or 2 pieces of bacon) = perfect breakfast to end the long week.
Lunch – Bento Box
Bento boxes don’t always have to include sushi! Take 10 whole wheat crackers, 2 ounces of your favorite cheese and a thinly sliced apple. Then, add some grilled chicken to your box and 1/2 cup fresh sugar snap peas. Try different combinations of toppings on your crackers, or eat them separately! (Pro tip: if you’re making this in the morning to eat later in the day, add 1/2 tsp lemon or lime juice to your apple to prevent browning!)
Snack – Fruit and vegetables are always great snack options.
Add two Tbs of dip if you need extra flavor.
Dinner – Bean and cheese burrito
In a 10 in. whole wheat tortilla, add 1/2 cup refried beans and 1/4 cup cheese. You can also add anything from diced tomatoes to olives to avocado slices. This is another microwavable recipe!