Generally speaking, campus food is not catered toward those who are trying to eat healthy without jeopardizing flavor and their bank accounts. Being a vegan with an unfortunate class schedule that makes it impossible for me to run back to The Hill for a decent meal, finding a nutritious campus eatery has become a priority.
After doing some research and taste testing, I finally found some healthy and relatively budget-friendly places to eat. Here is a list of tips and healthy, vegan-vegetarian-glutenfree-friendly, campus eateries for those days when you don’t have time to pack a lunch or eat on The Hill (RIP poor swipes).
Not only does it have a salad bar with an array of greens and toppings, but there’s also a hot food bar stocked with grilled protein, rice, and veggies. For your salads, skip the prepared dressings for olive oil and vinegar, and add some grilled tofu or veg from the hot food section to spice things up. Or go the hot food route and make yourself a delicious bowl. But beware the price of salads; toppings add up fast.
Wolfgang Puck Express
The menu at Wolfgang is fairly large and you will find no shortage of lean proteins and superfoods. There are lots of vegetarian options and almost anything can be veganized, including the pizza (ask to omit the cheese). You will find all kinds of salads, light pastas, and sandwiches too. I went for the Vegan Hummus Wrap and a side salad ($8.17).
Lu Valle Commons
This has got to be my favorite place because you’re guaranteed a bang for your buck. I usually get the burrito bowl ($6.75) with rice, beans, tofu and veggies, pico de gallo, hot sauce, and corn, all of which are vegan. They also make tacos and burritos that can easily be healthified, but your best bet is to get a bowl and avoid the meats.
Fusion has a decent selection of veggies and proteins to choose from. Most of the sides are gluten free and vegetarian/vegan-friendly, and include brussels sprouts, brown rice, tabouleh, grilled veggies, etc. You can also add a sauce or hummus to round out your dish. For the healthiest option, I recommend the Veggie Plate with hummus and pita bread.
North Campus Student Center
The Lighter Side
Here you have a choice of three sides or a protein and two sides. I chose the sweet potato puree, black beans, and roasted tomato and cauliflower. I recommend adding some salt and pepper because the veggie sides can be a bit bland. But this is definitely a healthy and budget-friendly option if you don’t want to leave North Campus.