Healthy Fare that's In Demand

C&U operators dish about nutritious food that faculty and students crave.

Who says healthy can’t be popular with students and faculty? Protein salads made with wheat berries and cottage cheese are flying off the shelf, watercress and tofu sell out a school-sponsored farmers market and football players are making the vegan station their first stop. At colleges and universities across the country, foodservice operators are meeting the challenge of providing meals that are both nutritious and tasty. Here’s a sampling of what’s being served:


Perfect Protein Salad
Concordia College, Moorehead, Minn.

For this upper Midwest school, the big hit is Perfect Protein Salad. Janet Paul, associate director of dining services, first tasted the salad at a local deli, and after some at-home knockoff experimentation, offered it late last winter in the college’s residential dining hall and three retail outlets. Faculty members show up early to buy the pre-packaged retail salads before they sell out and students complain when the salad isn’t available in the dining hall.

The popularity of this dish, made with soybeans, wheat berries and cottage cheese, loaded with vegetables and dressed with low-fat mayo mixed with apple cider vinegar, caught Paul off guard. “I’m frankly surprised students eat it at all,” she says. “I thought it would appeal to faculty and staff, but not students. Students ask for healthier items, but they don’t want healthier unless it tastes really good.” The salad is sold in retail every third day and is offered once or twice in a four-week cycle in the residential hall. It’s selling itself, says Paul, with little marketing needed.

“If we run out of it, people complain and we have to make more the next time,” she says. Ultimately, she says, it may end up on the menu every day.

See recipe


More From FoodService Director

Sponsored Content
fish tacos

From High Liner Foods.

Younger consumers are driving an increased focus on sustainability, and more consumers overall are demanding a wider variety of seafood on menus. With shifting interest in seafood, operators need to be familiar with the seafood consumer—who they are, what they’re looking for and when they eat it—to more effectively boost interest in seafood dishes.

Understand consumer habits

Technomic’s 2017 Center of the Plate: Seafood & Vegetarian report finds that 65% of consumers eat seafood at least occasionally (once every 90 days or more), either as an...

Industry News & Opinion

The Missouri House of Representatives has initially approved a bill that would enable students with dietary issues to forgo mandatory meal plans at public colleges and universities, U.S. News reports.

Approved Tuesday, the bill would grant students with medical documentation of food sensitivities, food allergies or medical dietary issues the right to opt out of meal plans.

Supporters of the bill say it will allow students to not have to pay for food they can’t safely eat, while opponents say that the bill will negatively impact schools financially. According to legislative...

Industry News & Opinion

A study released by Sodexo indicates that gender-balanced management improves team performance.

The 2018 study is an expansion of a previous Sodexo study that launched in 2014. The expanded study analyzed 50,000 managers in all levels of management from 70 entities around the world over five years.

The study found that teams managed by 40% to 60% women had better employee and client retention, saw fewer workplace accidents and increased their operating margins and employee engagement.

Industry News & Opinion

Rick Farmer, executive chef for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., and Stephanie Powers, executive chef of Spring Harbor, a retirement community in Columbus, Ga., were crowned the winners of MenuDirections’ 2018 Culinary Competition.

Split into teams of two, chefs had 60 minutes to prepare and plate their own entrees using a preselected basket of ingredients such as beans, mushrooms and orange sauce. Each dish was judged on its presentation, taste and creativity.

The winning dish was orange glazed pork with a black bean and wild mushroom cake topped...

FSD Resources