Sarah Grace and I loved having a grocery store right down the road from our dorm. Almost every weekend we would grab our recyclable bags and make the ten minute walk to Publix. The grocery store got us out of our dorm room, provided exercise, and gave us a time to talk to each other about our weeks. Going to the grocery store may seem like a hassle to some, but we always looked forward to our trips; it’s the simple things that count. While buying groceries weekly does mean spending extra money in addition to your meal plan, we found that it was the best way for us to stay happy and healthy with quality food stocked in our room. We were willing to sacrifice around 30-40 dollars a week in order to cut back on eating junk food from vending machines and cafeteria food. Here is a list of some of the items we regularly purchase at the store.
We ate breakfast in our dorm room every day because it was healthier and more convenient. Watch out though, because a lot of breakfast foods can contain a lot of sugar.
Plain instant oatmeal – look for the brands with no added salt and sugar, then add your own fresh fruit or nuts
Greek Yogurt – we started out eating fruit flavors, but after realizing how much sugar they contained we slowly transitioned to plain yogurt
Granola – watch out for sugar content on this as well. Our favorite brand was Bear Naked + Protein
Coconut Creamer – a lot less fat than half and half
Bananas – try to buy them green and no more than 5 so they don’t ruin before your next grocery run
Kashi Go Lean Cereal – we loved the high fiber and protein and low sugar content of this cereal
Bread – always try for whole wheat
Avocado – great for avocado toast; buy one ripe avocado and one green one to last you throughout the week
We typically only ate lunch in the room on weekends or if we had a busy day
Loaf of bread
Hard Boiled Eggs – can be boiled in a rice cooker and last about a week
Snacks are essential to living in a dorm, but make sure to keep them healthy
Nuts – if you can, eat unsalted nuts due to the high sodium content of salted nuts.
Grapes – during the fall and spring, we put our grapes in the freezer for a nice cold treat to cool down from the heat outside
Apples – we ate our weight in apples this past year because they are such an easy, filling snack.
Lara/Kind Bars – these have high sugar content but are the better choices of other snack bars out there
Like lunch we only ate in our dorm occasionally
Sweet Potatoes – can be steamed in a rice cooker and are delicious!
Amy’s Organic Frozen Dinners– we loved the black eyed peas, rice and mixed veggies one the best
Frozen Andes Chocolate Mints/ Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate almond milk -great post-exercise drink
Our dorm did not have a kitchen so we only purchased food that could be prepared in a rice cooker or microwave. Try to buy foods in small amounts and most fruits and veggies can be purchased in small quantities. We would split foods like bread that are only sold in bulk. We were good about splitting food prices pretty evenly, and we learned to share foods so that we didn’t waste anything. If you want to live a healthy lifestyle while living in a dorm, buying healthy food is key.