HG's Back-to-School Survival Guide! (College Edition)

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Here's your OFFICIAL guide to a guilt-free school year... There's great info here for everyone, but if you know someone in college, in grad school, or living in a campus-style setting, send this to them ASAP!

  I. Breakfast (Always Eat It)

At the dining hall, skip the fatty pastries and oversized bagels with slabs of cream cheese; stick to high-fiber cereals with fat-free milk, light yogurt, fresh fruit, oatmeal, and hard-boiled egg whites. Also keep quick b-fast items in your dorm room for those times you'd rather sleep in than hit the cafeteria. (BEEN THERE!) Fruit, low-cal snack bars with protein, and 100-calorie packs of nuts are smart, and they're ideal if you don't have a fridge or microwave; they're also perfect to toss in your bag for later, if you're not hungry first thing in the morning. Got a fridge? Stash low-fat yogurt cups. Hot water? Instant oatmeal is your friend. No coffee machine? Mix up some instant coffee with powdered creamer, and get to that 8 a.m. class on time.

  II. Lunch and Dinner at the Cafeteria

First things first: Take a lap around to scope out all the options. Look for lean protein, like baked chicken breast, grilled fish, etc. Cafeteria have a salad bar? Click for tips! When it comes to sandwiches, here's the deal: Skip the fatty deli salads and opt for lean turkey slices, choose mustard over mayo, load up on veggies, and go for thin slices of wheat bread, not oversized rolls or wraps. (Save even more calories by ditching the top slice of bread.) As for sides, avoid the chips and fries... A piece of fruit or some veggies (crunchy cut-up ones or steamed options) are the way to go. If your caf' is buffet-style, pretend there are no seconds -- this way, you'll have a clear idea of exactly how much food you're eating.

  IV. Dorm-Room/Apartment Must-Haves!

Water Bottle
- Staying hydrated can help you avoid mindless munching, but buying plastic bottles all the time can get pricey. If you need a filtration system, try a water bottle with a built-in filter. If not, check out these cute aluminum options.

Low-Calorie Drink Mix Packets - Skip the soda and stash some of these packets. Crystal Light makes roughly a billion flavors (including naturally sweetened options), and we also really like Lipton Tea & Honey To Go Packets.

Protein-Packed Snacks
- These are essential when you need something really filling between meals. If you have a fridge, stock up on portion-controlled cheese snacks, fat-free Greek yogurt, turkey slices, and fat-free cottage cheese. No fridge? No problem. Go for jerky, pouched tuna, low-cal protein bars, and packets of nut butter. If you have a microwave, cans of low-fat chili are excellent to have on hand.

Crunchy Snacks - Don't cave to the call of the vending machine and its fatty chips and crisps. Keep your own stash of smart crunchies. We're hopelessly devoted to Popchips, and 94% fat-free popcorn is perfect if you've got microwave access. Click here for a whole email devoted to crunchy snacks!

Sweet Treats - Smart ways to feed a dessert craving are a must. Jell-O's sugar-free pudding snacks are great, but if you don't have a fridge, Snack Pack's sugar-free options are shelf-stable. And you can't go wrong with sugar-free dessert-inspired gum, lollipops, and hard candies!

The Super-Healthy Stuff - Fresh fruit and veggies are pretty much essential. We're Fuji fanatics, but apples of any kind are fantastic. And click here for some unexpected veggies to snack on. Also good? Packs of almonds with 100 calories ROCK! Blue Diamond and Emerald make 'em.

Frozen Items - If you have a freezer, here's your go-to shopping list: meatless burger patties, guilt-free meals & meal starters (click here for our favorites!), VitaTops, and low-fat fudge pops.

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  III. Dining Out/Ordering In

Here's a quick list of essential survival guides -- click and read up!

Frozen Yogurt
Fast Food
Chinese Food
Happy Hour (if you're of the legal drinking age!)

  V. College-Savvy Recipe Roundup

Mini Fridge/Freezer (No-Cook Basics)...

Spicy Thai-Style No-Cook Stir-Fry - A GREAT alternative to greasy takeout.

Happy Trail Mix Yogurt - WAY smarter than those oversized bags of trail mix being sold in the student center.

Salsa-fied Tuna Stacks - So easy and so satisfying!!!

Shrimp Cocktail Tacos - Four ingredients, humans. Can't get much easier than that...

Mini Fridge/Freezer + Microwave...

BLT B-fast Burrito and Cheeseburger Tacos
- These recipes will obliterate fast-food cravings.

The Egg Mug Classic & More - Egg mugs are b-fast scrambles made in the microwave. Click here, and prepare to have your world ROCKED.

HG's Lean-O Cioppino - Canned soup just got WAY more interesting. And it only took TWO other ingredients!

Mini Fridge/Freezer + Stove...

Grilled Cheese Dunkin' Duo, Greek Grilled Cheese, and Apple 'n Jack Grilled Cheese
- That's right... THREE guilt-free grilled cheese recipes. WOOHOO!

Growing Oatmeal Bowls - If you're lucky enough to have a stove in your abode, make these oversized oatmeal bowls! You'll never look at instant oatmeal packets the same way again...

Creamy Cheesy Bacon 'Chini and Double-Cheese Corn Quesadilla
- These easy snacks/mini-meals may soon become stars in your collegiate universe!


Quick! Pass this email to any college students you might know -- click "Send to a Friend" now.


Today, August 31st, is both National Eat Outside Day and National Trail Mix Day. Honor both -- make some Party Poppin' Trail Mix, and take it on a hike!

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