Dorm Room Snack Hacks

Herbed Popcorn

In most minds, dorm room dining does not evoke Instagram-worthy images of nutritious foods. Students typically do not have access to a kitchen and can feel resigned to warming up easy mac or ramen noodles in a microwave or splurging on a fast food delivery order. Yet, with some ingenuity, it’s possible to eat healthy and on a budget from a dorm room. Here are a few simple strategies and recipes from Guiding Stars to help college students eat healthy dorm room meals and snacks without spending all their cash.

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Snack Healthy: Mini-Meal Chart

The featured photo of the article.

The days of three square meals may be a thing of the past. Busy daily schedules, limited time for cooking and the ever increasing popularity of smoothies, juices, protein bars, power bowls and the like are packing many nutrients into quick, on-the-go options. Bigger than snacks, these “mini meals” nourish us throughout the day and have the potential to work together to satisfy our nutrient needs.

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School Nutrition Standards: Where are We Now?

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On July 1, 2012, schools and programs that utilize the National School Lunch program began the process of adopting the changes required under the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act (HHFKA). Though challenging to implement, the strong need for better nutrition for the over 30 million children who rely on the National School Lunch program and the opportunity for greater reimbursement per meal (an extra 6 cents), encouraged schools to comply. The transformation to come was so monumental and innovative for a program that hadn’t seen change in fifteen years, that Guiding Stars devoted a webinar on the topic. Now, two years later, we can see how the changes are being implemented and where we are on our journey toward feeding the next generation.

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Making Banana Pancakes

I love pancakes. They’re such a cozy way to start the weekend, and having extras on hand to heat in the toaster makes the work week easier to manage. The problem is that I prefer pancakes covered in butter and syrup, which is not the most nutritious way to start the day, especially given that pancakes are typically not what you could call nutritionally dense to begin with.

I’ve been learning a lot about improving the nutrition of my favorite recipes while working with Guiding Stars, so I decided to try modifying the buttermilk pancake recipe in my favorite cookbook. The result was completely delicious (without syrup!) and earns 3 Guiding Stars…this is the process I used to get there:

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