The best healthy lunches on the Uni of Liverpool campus

Summer body hidden under exam stress and an exceeded overdraft?


We all know around this time of the year, it feels cruel that we are made to be getting in shape for summer at the same time as we are crying over exams. As much self love as we can try to give ourselves, being healthy at this time is still important, so we've found the healthiest yet cheapest and convenient options for lunches for these long days in the library.

Starbucks

Now there is minimal here that is exactly going to be in Joe Wicks' next book, but let's face it – it's bang on for location and stares you right in the face as soon as you step off the 699. It also, arguably (don't kill me, Costa fans), has the best coffee, you'll spot me getting my third espresso of the day here to get me through lectures.

So your options are limited, but some better ones are the cold sandwiches like chicken and bacon or GF ham and cheese. The scrambled egg hot box is also a nice alternative for brunch, and the two salads they do have could be tastier – but if you are looking for a salad, what are you doing in Starbucks anyway? Guess it's what we have to do for our health. And if you really can't resist a treat, the better ones are the vegan chocolate and raspberry cakes or crispy sticks.

Costa

Again, another Tory lunch option – but this article is all about inclusiveness. All the sandwiches and wraps are fairly safe as they are all under 600 calories, with the lowest being egg mayo or tuna and sweetcorn. Now, Costa does have one up on Starbucks in the salad category with much more taste and variety, the roast chicken salad coming in strong as the least calorific, but my personal favourite and still fairly guilt-free, is the mozzarella and sun-dried tomato pasta salad.

Another little tip that should help the rest of the caffeine addicts right now is to try and go dairy free with your coffees! Take a medium latte from Costa and swap your regular semi-skilled to a coconut milk, or even better an almond milk, and you can practically half the calories. Or my favourite swap is instead of your latte, try just getting an americano with a dash of your chosen milk. Unless you drink black coffee, then you carry on doing you, you're too hardcore for me.

Subway

This is my winner. Subway is great for healthy choices, they even have a 'low-fat subs' section in store and online. Just resist those posters for the new garlic bread and nachos!!

As for the best sandwiches, Veggie Delite is very clean and you can have all the veg you want, and as an ex-veggie it really isn't as boring as you think. But if you are someone who needs meat to make it a meal, then you are looking at turkey or chicken breast. Really, as long as you don't go crazy, they are all relatively good – we are all for toasting, but politely declining that cheese will save you a lot of empty cals.

Now, the new wraps defo look fab and taste even better, but are not the best when trying to slim down. Of course, you guessed it, the hot favourite would be a…SALAD! If you are going to punish yourself, at least make it as little calories as poss. There is nothing worse than eating oily veg that practically equates to a big bowl of pasta. In Subway you are totally safe from that, you can put whatever you want in it straight from scratch. With the great nutritional value in these, you could get 2! My fave is chicken tikka or tuna mayo.

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Resist those Walkers

Tesco

Here, the world is your oyster. It is perfect for those days where you don't need a full meal, or if you fancy a few different things for a reasonable price. You can buy your own lunch ingredients from here and make your own meal in Abercromby Square if you so choose, but I think the most famous and convenient is the classic meal deal. That's right folks, you don't have to give up your meal deals! Swap the fizzy drink for a water and the crisps for a fruit pot and you're away. The pasta tubs can be a little high in calories, so maybe check out the different sandwiches and sushi boxes.

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Treat yo'self

The Guild

Hit up the Burrito bar at The Guild for a tasty hot lunch that you can pick yourself… it's like a Mexican Subway! For a healthier option, you can even ditch the wrap and get a rice box.

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The famous Guild delicacy

Packed lunch

Now, if you're really focusing on your bank balance as well as trying to shed a few pounds, then you can always just make it from your flat. Invest in some tupperware and meal prep your lunches. This is a great idea and will allow you to save time as well on your busy days, you won't have to worry about waiting in those queues, you can just head straight to the grass, or wherever you like to enjoy your break from all this work we're doing right now. You can make your own sandwiches, pasta dishes, crackers and dips, cut up veg, whatever you like!

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Channel your inner Nigella Lawson with that midnight fridge raid

I hope this has given you some good ideas of how to stay healthy and not break the bank during your lunch hours on campus, but this is not to say you have to always be! Sometimes, just have the bloody Greggs sausage roll. You deserve it.