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Essential Tips to Being Vegetarian in College

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Conn Coll chapter.

Many vegetarians understand the relentless questions regarding their dietary choices: “What do you eat?” “Do you miss meat?” “Why are you vegetarian?” etc. At home, these questions were simple. My mom and I do our own grocery shopping, cook our own meals, and discover new recipes. There was no reason to not be vegetarian in my eyes. It’s amazing for the environment, and I never enjoyed meat that much anyway (no, I’m not craving bacon as tasty as it is!). 

However, once I arrived at college, being vegetarian was much more challenging. I don’t have access to my own kitchen, and the dining hall food is very limited (and not very yummy, I must admit). After five years of being a herbivore, I couldn’t let college get in the way. Here are three tips for being vegetarian in college:

Snacks are your best friend!

When I have three classes back to back, I don’t have time to run to the dining hall and even think about what to eat. That’s where snacks come in handy! I like to use my reusable sandwich bags (we’re trying to be sustainable!) and throw in some dried fruit, an assortment of nuts, or roasted chickpeas. I also always keep a protein bar and an orange in my bag for emergencies. 

Don’t take the dining hall for granted!

Yes, dining hall food makes anything else seem delectable. But we can’t forget: it’s free! My go-to snack from the dining hall is a toasted bagel with cream cheese. This scrumptious snack only takes about a minute and is super easy to toss in a container on the go! Any type of bagel works (my favorite is an everything bagel) with cream cheese. If you want to add some protein, use peanut butter instead. Or, you can eat a banana with peanut butter on the side…delish! 

Eat your veggies!

Snacks are great and all, but we have to eat more than just a few nuts. After all, we aren’t invincible! At the dining hall, I always go for whatever veggies they might have. I love to throw together some zucchini, squash, cauliflower, etc. Once I have my assortment of veggies, I add protein on top. Dining halls occasionally have tofu or Beyond Sausage and they definitely have quinoa or lentils. Trust me, vegetarians can find protein in a dining hall, whether it’s spinach or beans, or anything in between. 

In sum, being a vegetarian in college is not impossible! There are many options, and most are quite tasty. Using resources online to find ways to incorporate protein into your diet is extremely helpful. Plus, finding new yummy food is quite enjoyable! Happy eating!

Eva Rausch

Conn Coll '27

My name is Eva (she/her) and I am a freshman at Connecticut College! I am interested in majoring in gender, sexuality, and intersectionality studies, classics, anthropology, or english. I am also curious about pursuing the Museum Studies Certificate Program at Conn. I am an avid reader and baker. I also love to crochet and sew!