Study Sustenance

brings some tasty ideas for busy students to keep them going through long days on campus

Image: Moyan Brenm

Image: Moyan Brenm

We’ve all been there. With a jam-packed day at university, or a big study session in the library beckoning, our bodies need some serious sustenance to get through it all. However, what might seem like only a few pounds on a quick lunch in the library café soon adds up as the term wears on. Making your own healthy meals is far cheaper, and offers the chance to create your own customised lunch with your favourite ingredients. Here are a three tasty ideas to get you started.

Pizza Pasta:

This one is a no-brainer, simply cook for dinner, portioning half into a tupperware to put in the fridge ready to take with you in the morning. Moreover, this can be totally customised depending on your pizza topping preference; try ham and pineapple, or add extra bbq sauce and some chicken for a smoky flavour. The choice is yours!

  • Put 150g of pasta on to boil.
  • While that’s cooking, fry an onion and some garlic. If you like mushrooms, they make a great addition at this point. When nicely browned, add one can of chopped tomatoes, a generous squeeze of tomato ketchup or bbq sauce, and, if available, a handful of fresh basil leaves (2 tsps of dried basil will do just as well)
  • Combine the drained pasta with the sauce, and add chopped pepperoni. Then chop a mozzarella ball into small chunks, and add to the pasta. If you’re feeling extra virtuous, baby spinach makes a great addition to this dish, cold or hot!
  • Portion out half for your dinner and half for the next day for a delicious dish that will taste like just like your favourite italian pizza!
Image: Taryn Domingos

Image: Taryn Domingos

Mediterranean salad:

This one is great for the autumnal months, as roast veg gives a really delicious flavour. This is a great option for all the veggies and vegans out there, while those who are gluten intolerant can swap the couscous out for quinoa. The recipe below will make enough for two generous portions, how’s that for planning ahead.

  • Chop one small courgette, one bell pepper and one onion into bitesize pieces. Along with a few cherry tomatoes, place onto a baking tray with a drizzle of oil and roast on a high heat for about forty minutes, turning the veg half way to make sure it cooks evenly.
  • Make up the couscous: use about 120g and add 175ml of boiling water. Let stand for five minutes, until the couscous has absorbed the water. Season with salt and pepper, and if you have any spices around, sprinkle in a bit of paprika.
  • Tear off a few leaves of an iceberg lettuce and cut into shreds. Mix with the couscous and roasted veg, box up, and you’re good to go!


Image: Marju Randmer

Image: Marju Randmer

For snacking in-between meals hummus is a fantastic, filling snack to keep hunger at bay till dinner time! Take a pot of hummus along with carrot sticks, celery, pepper or even pitta bread cut into strips for tasty finger food you can eat at your desk. Hummus is relatively cheap to buy at most shops, but if you have access to a blender, it’s incredibly easy to make your own.

  • Simply blend a can of chickpeas, garlic, tahini, 1 tsp of oil and a splash of milk until smooth, adding pepper and salt to taste.
  • If you’re feeling fancy, you can even add roasted pepper or sundried tomatoes when you blend it.

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