You’ve got a lot of options, but sometimes convenience is of the utmost importance. If you were looking for a place on the east side of campus, I would recommend the Fireside Café.
Located behind the ConocoPhillips Integrated Science Building (CPSB), the Fireside Café is different, in that it hosts a calmer atmosphere than other dining options on campus. I would even rank it above Starbucks in terms of chill factor.
On the nutritional side of things, the Fireside Café offers a wide selection of paninis (made to order), fresh soup, and an assortment of fruits. While the paninis are made with refined grains and often with cheese, they are of modest proportions and are pretty darn delectable.
What if you’re smack dab in the middle of campus?
There really are not very many good options. It’s a matter of having to choose between the better of a few evils; scattered coffee shops, Subway, or Mein Bowl.
The coffee shops only really sell overpriced pastries that contribute nothing to a healthy diet, only empty calories. Subway urges its customers to “eat fresh”, but how can you do that when all of the ingredients (minus the bread) are ages old? Mein Bowl, while tasty, is full of sodium. Which is the only reason why it is tasty.
So my choice for mid-campus has to be Subway, but pretty much only if you have to.
Deciding where to eat on the west side of campus is pretty obvious: the Cuddy Marketplace. It has a wide variety of food, which can be daunting to choose from. However, variety is what maintains a healthy diet.
My advice when visiting the Cuddy Marketplace is to avoid Grill 155, liquid cheese or sandwiches that have an expiration date more than a week from the current day. You may think they are fresh, but sandwiches should not be able to survive that long. I’m always wary of what they put in them to make them last.
With all of these options, don’t choose a “meal deal” with chips and pop. There’s really no reason to pay more for something that you’ll end up paying for later, whether it be through a gym membership or a higher insurance premium.