The Cafeteria: How Students Can Create Healthy Meals


[ot-caption title=”Navigate the endless options in the cafeteria to create healthy and delicious meals. (via Sydney Tacher/sophomore)”]

[spacer height=”10px” id=”2″]The Pine Crest cafeteria is one-of-a-kind with a myriad of options for everyone to enjoy.  Whether students and faculty are vegetarians, vegan, or gluten free, there is always something delicious to discover. Pine Crest even offers a healthy lunch to accommodate the pickiest of eaters.

[spacer height=”10px” id=”2″]Everyday, the cafeteria offers an open salad bar. The salad bar has everything from different types of lettuce to chickpeas, tomatoes, carrots, and more.  To top off the salad, there are a number of protein options, such as chicken, turkey, and hard-boiled eggs and many dressings to choose from. One type of salad that is easy to make is a balsamic chicken salad. The key ingredients in this salad are chicken, carrots, cucumber, and chickpeas, with balsamic dressing. Add apple slices and peanut butter to your tray for a savory and sweet side.

[spacer height=”10px” id=”2″] If salad isn’t filling enough, fear not, as there are many other options to choose from. Another healthy lunch that can be made at the cafeteria is a sandwich, and there are a variety of breads to use.  In order to eat something a little less boring than a plain peanut butter and jelly sandwich, try making a turkey sandwich. Junior Alexa Marcus suggests, “It is so easy to make a turkey sandwich and it is a very filling and tasty lunch.”  One recipe for a turkey sandwich is taking two pieces of seeded, multigrain bread and adding turkey from the salad bar. Then, put a slice of American cheese and then some lettuce, tomatoes, and a pickle. On the side, add some carrots with ranch dressing to bring another dimension to the meal.

[spacer height=”10px” id=”2″] One last option to have at the cafeteria is a rice bowl. The food court always serves rice and beans, but to make more of a meal, there are toppings galore. First, put some rice and beans in the bowl, and then add cubed tomatoes and some cilantro from the mason jars next to the rice and bean station.  To top of the dish, add chicken and shredded cheese from the salad bar — it’s just like a burrito bowl from Chipotle. This rice bowl is another healthy option that is also easy to take on the fly in one of the paper bowls, if need be.

[spacer height=”10px” id=”2″]The cafeteria has many ingredients that can be added together easily for a nutritious meal. Why pack a lunch while rushing out the door when there are all of these healthy options? Geometry and Computer Science teacher Mark Spitzig adds, “I go to the cafeteria to eat lunch everyday and I love the food that they serve. There is always something for me to eat.” Next trip to the cafeteria, stay on the lookout for these healthy treats.