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

Pages

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
oversized portions

Here are the trends FSD's Chefs’ Council members wish would go away.

Kale Gluten-free Sriracha Chipotle Microgreens on everything Sous vide cooking Aversion to bread Healthy desserts Vegan diets Lies about local sourcing/organic food Fast food Cupcakes Pumpkin spice Fat-free or low-fat Meatless Mondays Bread cones Rigid child nutrition guidelines Bacon on everything Cajun Doughnuts with over-the-top toppings Oversized portions Fried foods Pinterest
Ideas and Innovation
Frose

Frose, sushi burgers and single-item restaurants are hot topics as of late, according to Forbes, which recently released a list of seven buzzwords in the foodservice world. Here’s what’s trending, in no particular order.

Blended burgers Frozecco and frose Goth food Hemp Single-item restaurants Sushi burger Upcycling
Industry News & Opinion
MeuDirections

One of my favorite cartoons shows a commander whose soldiers are in the midst of fighting a war with bows and arrows. Without turning around, he tells a man who has come up behind him, “I’m sorry, I’m too busy to talk to you.” The man was a rifle salesman.

In today’s time-pressed world, we are all too busy. So, it can be difficult to find time to reach out to others for ideas, solutions and best practices. But as that cartoon illustrates, it’s critical to being successful. The sharing of knowledge is a pillar of FoodService Director . Through our magazine and events, we have been...

Ideas and Innovation
chefs

We started inviting chefs and FSDs from other districts to come prepare lunch. Through featuring different chefs and chef-inspired meals, I’ve found the students have been looking forward to coming into the cafeteria. They are willing to try new things with crazy names, and to ask for their favorite outside items turned healthy.

FSD Resources