While some collegiettes have the luxury of living in apartment-style dorms complete with microwaves, refrigerators and full ovens, many of us are forced to make the cold trek down to the dining hall every time we want a snack, which is just the worst when it’s late or it’s too cold outside. By keeping a stash of appliance-free, non-spoiling snacks on your shelf, you can curb your hunger and keep yourself going between meals! Try keeping some of these great fridge-less treats on hand for easy, healthy snacking.
1. Dried Fruit
A busy week can leave you with rotten bananas and bruising apples that you were sure you would eat before they went bad. To ensure that you always have a fruity and sweet snack available, try keeping some dried fruit on hand!
Dried fruit won’t go bad and is just sweet enough to satisfy your dessert cravings.
However, beware of the sugarcoated look-a-likes and candied fruit that may masquerade as a healthy treat, and instead choose the natural, unsweetened and organic options. But even unsweetened dried fruit has more calories than fresh fruit, so keep your snack size portion to a handful or two. A quarter-cup serving of dried cherries has 130 calories with 32 grams of carbohydrates and 1 gram of protein. You can keep snack-sized portions in small Ziploc baggies so that you’re not tempted to keep reaching back into a big bag.
Nicole Gartside, a senior at NYU, suggests trying fruit leathers as an easy snack. Fruit leathers are a happy medium between dried fruit and gummy snacks, and Nicole says that they’re “just sweet enough to hit the spot. They come in so many different flavors and they don’t take up any room at all in your dorm!”
Stretch Island Fruit Co. makes all-natural fruit strips out of dried, pressed fruit puree (think healthy Fruit Roll-Ups!). One of these “Orchard Cherry” Fruit Strips has just 45 calories and 12 grams of carbohydrates, and it counts as half a serving of fruit.
2. Mixed Nuts
Just a handful of protein-packed nuts can keep your hunger at bay. Whether you prefer almonds, cashews, pistachios or peanuts, this snack can be perfect to keep on hand when you feel like you can’t quite make it until dinner. Raw, unsalted nuts are your best bet, but lightly salted or roasted nuts can help cure your salty-chip craving!
Nuts provide your body with essential healthy fats, but they do have a high caloric value, so be sure to limit your serving size. One quarter-cup of whole, plain almonds has 170 calories, 6 grams of carbs and 6 grams of protein. For proper portion control and a great on-the-go snack, try the 100 Calorie Packs from Blue Diamond --each pack has 3 grams of carbohydrates and 4 grams of protein. Throwing one of these mini packs in your bag in the morning can be just what you need to hold you over between classes!
Trail mix is an especially filling snack that can satisfy your salty, sweet and chocolaty cravings all in one bite. However, store-bought trail mixes are often loaded with extra salt or chocolate, so if you’d like a healthier variation, try making your own! Try out different nuts like almonds, peanuts, cashews and pistachios with your favorite dried fruit and dark chocolate bits (or skip the chocolate altogether if you have the willpower) until you find your perfect ratio. The nuts will fill you up with protein, while the fruit will give you the kick of energy you need to make it through your next class. Make a big batch and split it up into sandwich bags for portion control and perfect on-the-go snacking.
3. Granola Bars
Granola bars are the Holy Grail snacking option for collegiettes. The options are endless—whether you’re looking for something salty, nutty, fruity, sweet, crunchy or chewy, there is sure to be a brand for you.
Fruit-and-nut bars are an even healthier alternative, so check out the assortment of bars offered by KIND. The original Fruit & Nut Delight Bar has 17 grams of carbs, 3 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein in just 200 calories!
Not all granola bars are created equal, so look for bars with all-natural ingredients and few preservatives. Some good options are LARABARs and FiberLove bars. Because they’re pre-packaged, it’s easy to just throw a bar in your bag if you need a quick snack between classes to silence your growling stomach.
Throw away the greasy potato chips that used to be your late-night snack and grab a bag of pre-popped Skinny Pop or Boom Chicka Pop for a guilt-free snack that’s low in calories. The Original Skinny Pop Popcorn has 155 calories in a four-cup serving with 15 grams of carbs and 2 grams of protein. Better yet, Skinny Pop offers 100-calorie bags for snacking on the go and easier portion control. Look for these healthy popcorn options, and you may find you like them even better than the butter-filled recipes offered by many microwavable popcorn brands!
5. Roasted Seaweed
You may not have expected to snack on seaweed, but when roasted with a little salt, this natural snack provides a great alternative to chips! These paper-thin snacks are perfect to munch on without making you feel weighed down.
The Roasted Seaweed Snacks from Trader Joe’s offer 2 grams of carbohydrates and 2 grams of protein in only 60 calories per package! Eating your greens has never tasted so good.
6. Wasabi Peas
If you’re struggling to get your daily dose of vegetables while at school, trying snacking on them during the day! Wasabi peas are perfect if you’re looking to spice up your snack routine, so try picking up a bag next time you’re at the store.
One quarter-cup serving of Trader Joe’s Wasabi Peas contains 4 grams of protein, 19 grams of carbs and 120 calories. Because these peas are wasabi-coated, be careful not to overindulge. Luckily, the peas are so spicy you probably couldn’t eat the whole bag in one sitting!
7. Healthy Crackers
Natural and organic crackers can be a great way to fill up when you need something crunchy to snack on. While cheesy and super-salty options might be appealing, choose organic, multigrain alternatives. Mary’s Gone Crackers are organic and vegan, and they don’t contain dairy, gluten or trans fats. A 13-cracker serving of the original flavor has only 140 calories, 21 grams of carbs and 3 grams of protein.
For added protein and extra flavor, top your crackers with peanut butter or almond butter. Luckily, peanut butter and almond butter are both fridge-less, so they’re perfect to keep in your room to jazz up your favorite snack. Two tablespoons of Skippy Natural Creamy Peanut Butter have 140 calories, 7 grams of protein and 6 grams of carbohydrates.
8. Chocolate-Covered Espresso Beans
For a sweet treat when the coffee shop feels too far away, try keeping dark-chocolate-covered espresso beans in your room. Sophie Dodd, a junior at Middlebury College, likes to keep couple of these espresso beans in her room for late-night studying. Just a few of these can satisfy your sweet tooth and give you the extra energy you need; each bean contains about 8 mg of caffeine.
If you don’t have a coffee machine in your room and the campus coffee shop is too far of a hike, these coffee treats are the perfect boost. Because they’re coated in chocolate, treat these beans as a dessert and only consume them in moderation—after a few of these, you won’t need that dining-hall brownie you’ve been craving all day!
9. Dry Cereal
Though milk and cereal seems to be the perfect breakfast, a few handfuls of dry cereal can also be a great midday snack. The flavor possibilities are endless, but we suggest trying Special K Original or Kashi GOLEAN cereal as your new favorite snack.
Kashi GOLEAN is high in fiber and protein if you’re looking for a filling and nutritious snack. Both cereals are low in fat, and a few handfuls are perfect to snack on throughout the day. Keeping small sandwich bags on hand is a great way to make this an on-the-go snack, so scoop a few handfuls of your favorite cereal into a Ziploc bag and keep it with you to munch on throughout the day!
Whether your campus has dropped to negative temperatures or your walk to the dining hall is just too daunting in the middle of the day, keeping non-spoiling snacks on hand ensures that you won’t be caught hungry. Try these and more healthy snack ideas from Her Campus and toss the potato chips and chocolate bars in the trash!