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5 Healthy Meals for Busy College Students

How many people woke up on January 1 and set goals such as going to the gym daily, saving more money or the most popular one, eating healthier? By now, most people have given up on their New Year’s resolutions. But have no fear, I am here to stop you before you completely ditch those new year, new you goals with a list of five delicious and healthy meals! Healthy eating is not about strict dietary limitations, staying unrealistically thin or depriving yourself of the foods you love. It’s about feeling great, having more energy, improving your health and stabilizing your mood. Next time you’re short on time but looking for something substantial to hold you over, try one of these delicious recipes!

1. Overnight Refrigerator Oatmeal


¼ cup uncooked old fashioned rolled oats (quick oats also work)

¼ cup plain Greek yogurt (regular yogurt works too)

¼ – ⅓ cup milk

1½ tsp chia seeds

¼ tsp vanilla (optional)

Sweetener of your choice

Fresh fruit


  1. Place oatmeal in a small canning jar (or container)
  2. Add in yogurt, milk, chia seeds, vanilla (optional) and your preferred sweetener (brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, stevia, jam, etc.)
  3. Stir up, then place in the refrigerator covered, to eat the next morning.
  4. Add fresh fruit just before you eat.

2. Nutella and Greek Yogurt Fruit Dip


4 tbsp. Nutella

2 cups nonfat Greek yogurt

2 lbs fresh, organic, whole strawberries


  1. In a medium mixing bowl measure out the non-fat Greek yogurt
  2. Add the Nutella
  3. Using a whisk, whip the two ingredients together vigorously for about 3 minutes
  4. Serve immediately with fresh whole strawberries (washed in cold water & patted dry with a towel), stems removed


3. Quick Chicken Tacos


Chicken Tacos:

2 tsp olive oil

2 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (cut into ½ to 1 inch cubes)

2 tsp taco seasoning

Small corn tortillas

Prepared salsa

Mexican cheese


Cabbage Slaw:

⅕ wedge of a large green cabbage

¼ large red onion

Just of ½ lime

2 tsp white vinegar

¼ tsp sugar

⅛ tsp salt

Chipotle Cream:

2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (canned)

3-4 tbsp light sour cream


Cabbage Slaw:

  1. Slice cabbage and red onions into thin strips and transfer to a large bowl
  2. Place onions in a small bowl filled with ice cold water to remove the strong raw taste
  3. Drain the onion and mix with cabbage
  4. Add lime juice, white vinegar, sugar, salt, and mix it together

Chipotle Cream:

  1. Chop chipotle peppers into very fine pieces
  2. Add chopped peppers to a bowl with sour cream and mix together until combined

Chicken Tacos:

  1. In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, add olive oil and cubed chicken pieces and sprinkle seasoning over chicken
  2. Cook until no pinkness remains
  3. Warm up corn tortillas
  4. Place chicken in the center, cover with cheese, cabbage slaw, chipotle cream, salsa, and any other toppings you choose

4. Strawberry Parmesan Salad


Fresh strawberries


Fresh parmesan

Your choice of salad dressing


  1. Chop strawberries
  2. Toss with arugula and favorite salad dressing
  3. Top with parmesan cheese

5. Summer Spaghetti


1 pound of dried spaghetti

½  cup of good quality olive oil

Kosher salt

4 fat cloves of garlic (removed from their skins)

3-6 heirloom tomatoes (depending on size), roughly chopped

Large bunch of fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped

Freshly ground pepper

1 cup of freshly ground Parmigiano – Reggiano, plus more to serve


  1. Place the chopped tomatoes in a colander and use your hands to gently squeeze out the seeds and juices. Leave to drain in the sink.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, add the oil to a large skillet and heat over medium-high. Add the garlic, stirring occasionally. Cook until it’s fragrant and golden. Remove and toss the garlic.
  3. Cook spaghetti according to package instructions, leaving it just slightly undercooked (even before it has reached ‘al dente’ state). Drain the pasta, reserving ½ cup of pasta water.
  4. Add the tomatoes and basil to the garlic oil. Season with salt and pepper and cook for about 5 minutes.
  5. Add the tomato ‘sauce’ and pasta to the large pot, along with the pasta water. Cook for another 5 minutes or so, then stir in the cheese. To serve: drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with more cheese, and season with more salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste.

Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Abby is a second year Business Management and Marketing double major at the University of Maine. She is a sister of Alpha Phi and enjoys reading, knitting, traveling, and spending time with friends and family in her spare time.
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