When students first decide to live in an off-campus apartment near TTU they are ecstatic about both the time and money they will save on food. Meal plans can be ultra-expensive and often times do not give students the food options they are looking for.
However, going from unlimited access to dining hall meals to actually planning meals, time, and budget on food is a learning curve for many – it definitely was for me! After a lot of overspending and setting off the fire alarm one too many times, I finally got the hang of it! Below are easy meals that I have grown to love.
As I said before, without a meal plan, it can be easy to overspend on groceries. Here are a few tips I have learned along the way in order to combat the frustration of overspending and having food go to waste at the end of the week:
- Never go to the grocery store hungry. Just trust me.
- Consider meal prepping. Planning and preparing your food at the beginning of the week will save you both time and money.
- Clearing decide how often a month you will go to the grocery store. If you decide to go grocery shopping weekly, for example, decide your meals for that week and only buy what's necessary for that week.
Easy Go-To Meals
Like many people say, breakfast is the most important meal of the day! Eating a nutritious meal in your Texas Tech University apartment at the beginning of your day will give you the energy to jumpstart your morning and make you more productive.
My go-to breakfast meal was overnight oats. Oats are high in soluble fiber which is great for digestive health and keeping you full until lunch. What I love about oats is that it gives you options to customize your breakfast meal every day. One day I would eat oats with fruit and peanut butter and other days I would just have it with honey and cinnamon.
Additionally, if you want to meal prep, overnight oats are a great option. You can meal prep the night before on your kitchen island and you can prep for the whole week as oats can be stored in an airtight container for up to five days in the refrigerator.
What You'll Need
- Oats of choice
- Peanut butter / Spread of choice
An easy everyday lunch go-to you can make in your TTU apartment are sandwiches. Sandwiches are super versatile, so you won't get tired of them easily. You can make a sandwich melt or a simple sub.
What You'll Need
- Favorite bread
- Preferred deli meal
- Toppings (ex: tomatoes, lettuce, onions)
I saved the best for last: at home chipotle bowls. I eat these at least 2 times a week and have leftovers for lunch the following days. These are a super healthy dinner option and great for meal prepping.
Just like actually buying a bowl at Chipotle, you are able to customize this meal in whichever way you want! You could have a chicken bowl one day and a veggie bowl another- no one can stop you from trying different bowls.
This meal is also great for college kids who have friends over often. Instead of buying pizza for your friends, this healthy quick option makes it fun to have a Chipotle bowl night! Everyone could bring a topping and then you all make your own bowls – so fun!
What You'll Need
- Favorite meat
- Toppings of choice!
Although the transition from quick dining hall food to preparing meals at home can seem overwhelming at first, rest assured that you will get the hang of it! When you are first trying these meals, try a variety of options and sooner than later you will know what you like and don't. Once you figure out your preferences, you will look forward to making your very own meals in your TTU apartment.