Staying Vegan In College

imagesMy family’s college visiting tour has come to an end and we are finally home. Although I posted about some of the restaurants we visited during our trip, I wanted to provide you with some suggestions about staying vegan as a college student.

I visited many college campuses with both of my sons, peeked into many dorm rooms, and even spent a couple of weeks in Syracuse with my older son. Therefore, I feel that I can give you some solid advice about this subject matter.

First of all, let me state that, at almost every college I visited, there was a SubwayChipotle or Moe’s Southwest Grill in the vicinity, all of which provide vegan options. There was also some type of ethnic restaurant near most of the schools I visited which served vegetarian food, such as falafel or hummus sandwiches. Many of the college’s dining halls offered vegan options too, although they were somewhat limited. There were even farmer’s markets on some of the college campuses I visited down south. If farmer’s markets come to your college campus, please take advantage of their healthy food options.

I imagine that it would be extremely difficult to stay vegan while you are living on a college campus, especially if your friends are non-vegans. However, if you are committed to your lifestyle choice, there are many ways to approach this.

I totally get how small those dorm room refrigerators are, and I have taken this into consideration with my following suggestions. In addition to those tiny refrigerators, I did notice that almost every dorm room housed a small microwave oven which could come in handy for you. Although I am not a big fan of microwaving food or eating instant food, I believe that you will most probably need to use a microwave to make the best of the situation.

Here are some of my suggestions:

1. Buy a large microwaveable soup mug with a lid such as those made by Corning Ware or by a company called Sistema which can be purchased on Amazon. This will enable you to make soup or vegan chili from a can, as well as various types of instant cereals.

Microwaveable Soup Mug From Corning Ware

Microwaveable Soup Mug From Corning Ware


2. Stock up on healthy snacks such as nuts, seeds, raisins, dried fruits or trail mix.



3. Buy instant vegan soups and instant hot cereals in microwaveable paper cups or packets which only need added water and microwaving. Dr. McDougall’s soups and instant meals in a cup are excellent. Check out Dr. McDougall’s food products and other quick and convenient foods on the website Pangea (The Vegan Store).




4. As far as instant soups go, nothing says “college dorm” more than Ramen Noodles! Dr. McDougall makes many different types of vegan ramen noodles in a cup such as Vegan Miso Ramen and Vegan “Chicken” Ramen. Annie Chun’s also makes vegan ramen noodle called Spring Vegetable Ramen Noodles, and I believe the Koyo Foods’ brand of ramen noodles are vegan too.

Annie Chun's Spring Vegetable Ramen Noodles

Annie Chun’s Spring Vegetable Ramen Noodles

Dr. McDougall's Miso Ramen

Dr. McDougall’s Miso Ramen


5. I think you should be able to squeeze some small microwaveable frozen meals into your tiny freezer such as those made by the Candle Cafe. They are all excellent!!!

Candle Cafe's Frozen Entrees

Candle Cafe’s Frozen Entrees


6. How about some super healthy vegan cereal in pre-packaged cups requiring that you simply add some cold water? Vigilant Eats Superfood Cereal is really perfect for a college dorm room because you don’t need a microwave and you don’t need to heat up any water. Simply add cold water to the cup, stir and voila. The perfect breakfast or snack!

Vigilant Eats Organic Superfood Cereal

Vigilant Eats Organic Superfood Cereal


7. Stocking up on some vegan canned goods would also be a great idea. Amy’s makes some great canned vegan soups, as well as various flavors of vegan chili. Simply pour the contents of the can into your microwaveable soup mug and you have an instant meal.

Amy's Vegan Soup

Amy’s Vegan Soup

Amy's Vegan Chili

Amy’s Vegan Chili


8. You could also keep some single serving size containers of Silk Almond Milk which comes in a few different flavors in your dorm room. You could either mix them with some vegan protein powder, such as Vega, or pour it over some dry cereal which you should also keep in your dorm room.

Single Serving Container of Silk Almond Milk

Single Serving Container of Silk Almond Milk


9. Ordinarily, I’m not one for meal replacement bars or shakes; however, when you are living at college, I think they are a great idea! Vega makes some great meal replacement shakes, as well as an all-in-one nutrition bar called the Vega One Bar. Sounds perfect to me to fill in those nutritional gaps which may develop during the school year.

Vega One Bars

Vega One Bars


10. There are a multitude of other vegan bars which you could stock up on while living at college, including Lara Bars and Clif Bars. They come in a variety of flavors, but I love the Cashew Cookie Lara Bar the best.

Lara Bar

Lara Bar


11. Of course, keeping small juice boxes in your dorm fridge is always a good idea. A jar of Spirulina sitting in your fridge to use with the juice would be the cherry on top of your vegan sundae!

Pure Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica

Pure Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica


12. What would all the healthy stuff be without some snacks to munch on while studying? If you can get your hands on these Sabra Hummus & Pretzels single-serve packs, I think you should consider yourselves very lucky. I love these convenient little packages and I think that they would be the perfect study snack to keep in your little refrigerator.

Sabra Single-Serve Hummus With Pretzels

Sabra Single-Serve Hummus With Pretzels


Anyway, I can think of many vegan junk food items to keep in your dorm room such as Oreos and Twizzlers, but I don’t think that polluting your body with all that sugar will do you any good. However, it is an idea for those times when you just feel like being a bit bad. Let’s hope that Twizzlers and Oreos are as bad as it gets for you in college! If you really want to be bad, how about stealing a few apples and bananas from the dining hall to keep in your fridge?

I hope you enjoyed some of my suggestions for staying vegan while in college, and that you have the courage and strength to follow your hearts while pursuing your vegan lifestyle during this very exciting time of your lives.




  1. Thank you very much for these suggestions. I’m moving in an intern flat next week, and I had no idea as to what kind of food I should bring along with me, especially since I am a vegetarian. I really appreciate all the tips.. Thank you 🙂

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