Quick Recipes for College Students

November 27, 2018
Happy Tuesday! Today's post comes from Environmental Intern Jasmine Jefferies. Enjoy!
College students are notorious for reaching for unhealthy snacks when they need something quick to eat. We frequently opt for items that are not the healthiest. In the moment, items such as chips, candy, cookies, etc seem like the fastest, most convenient option. It is hard to balance classes, work, appointments, and homework. With all of these obligations, the life of a college student remains constantly busy. Often, a  hectic college lifestyle can lead to the slide of some important areas of life. Typically, one of these areas is eating healthy. It can be difficult for a college student to maintain a healthy lifestyle with the “all-you-care-to-eat” dining commons, fast food, and late night snacks. However, there are a ton of quick, healthy snacks that any college student can incorporate into their everyday life. Here are a couple of healthy recipes.
1) Baked Chickpeas
Not only are these snacks super easy to make, but they are cheap and versatile. This chickpea snack is packed with fiber and protein, which means this is a great snack that is going to keep you full. Simply take 15 ounces of canned chickpeas, rinse and drain them. Once they are rinsed, pat them dry and add a touch of olive oil. Then you can add any seasoning you like. You can make they sweet, savory, spicy, any blend of seasoning works here. My personal favorite is simple: salt, pepper, and paprika. Other flavors include barbeque, lemon pepper, salt and vinegar, sriracha, cinnamon and sugar, and chocolate. Really, the options are endless. Once your chickpeas are coated in your desired spices/sauces, put them in the oven for 35-45 minutes on at 375 F. Pro  tip#1:  make sure they are in a single layer on the baking sheet. This allows them to get a really crunchy texture. Pro tip #2: be sure to shake the pan every ten minutes, so they cook evenly.
2) Trail Mix Bites
This recipe fuses trail mix and cookies to make a wonderful, healthy snack. These energy bites are filled with fiber, protein, and healthy fat. You can also get creative and switch up any nuts or dried fruit. For this recipe you will need:
1 cup of rolled oats
¾ cup of peanut butter
1 tablespoon of agave
¼ cup of pumpkin seeds
¼ cup of coconut
¼ cup of raisins 
½ cup of almond slices
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
This recipe is super simple. Just combine all the ingredients in a large bowl, and then refrigerate for a couple of hours. Scoop and roll the batter into balls, so they are ready to be served. This is another recipe that you can get creative with. You can swap peanut butter for almond butter, you can add cranberries or dried cherries - the options are endless for this easy recipe!
3) Bell Pepper Oven Fries
This recipe is great if you have a little more time and you are craving the classic fast food French fries. This recipe is a twist on that classic college favorite. This recipe is so good, you won’t even mind the veggies. For this recipe you will need:
2 red bell pepper cut into ½ inch rounds
2 large eggs (beat)
1 cup of flour
1 ½ cup of breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon of paprika, garlic powder, and salt
Start off by preheating the oven to 400 F. In a bowl, mix the breadcrumbs with all of the seasonings. Take each red bell pepper ring and coat it in flour, then the eggs, then the breadcrumbs. Once completely coated, lay each bell pepper ring on a baking sheet. Once all the rings are covered, put them in the oven for about 20 minutes total, making sure to flip them halfway through the cooking time. 
Hopefully, with the help of these snack ideas, students can avoid unhealthy cravings and fuel their body with nutritious food that will keep them energized and ready to tackle the day.  All of these items are healthy, easy, and they taste great!

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