Cheap and easy. Student snacks are the fuel that keeps assessments going, the victims of stress eating, the few items that take up the cavernous pantries and shelves in share-homes across the country. This review brings together a selection of six handpicked, artisanal products that are a staple for any university student.
Mi Goreng – 4 stars
To add the chilli sauce or not to add the chilli sauce. This question has divided the youth of Australia time and time again. The answer is to add that spicyboi to the bowl and get ready to ride the flavour train all the way to heat-town. Buy it in single serve, packets of multiple, or if your diet is 90% noodle based like my old share-house, you can find a shady supplier who will sell it by the box. Spicy, flavourful and quick to make. The only problem is one packet isn’t enough, but two packets is too much.
Oaty Slice: Choc – 4 stars
Relatively new kid on the block. Mother Earth’s Oaty Slice comes in many varieties and at three bucks for a pack of six, you can’t go wrong. The best of the bunch is hands down the chocolate oats flavour. A great alternative to smashing a block of chocolate or munching down a thick brownie, the mighty Oaty Slice is filled with choc goodness and goes great with a cup of coffee. Many are the moments when I’ve reached for one of these beauties instead of grabbing a Mars or Snickers. Try one, you will not regret it. BTW, does contain nuts!
Banana – 2 stars
No lunchbox, no problem. Wrapped in its own packaging this hearty health smart snack is full of protein, potassium and vitamin B6. The old saying goes “a banana will fill you up as much as a steak.” I don’t know about all that, but I do know that bananas go great in a smoothie, bread, with ice-cream, caramelised and au naturel. To offer some criticism against bananas; why you gotta turn so quickly for? One moment they are ripe and firm and the next they’ve gone soggy and nasty. Gonna have to bump a few stars off for that.
Soy Crisps – 3 stars
No longer relegated to the shadowy bowls on outdoor patio tables surrounded by mums having a few white wines. Soy crisps have been rescued and adopted by Uni-goers as a library munch mate or train ride hunger buster. Some may be put off by the word “soy” or call them flavourless, but don’t be discouraged. Far too easy to eat a whole packet, relatively cheap compared to their cousins Smiths and Thins, soy crisps are the foundation of any 10 hour day at the campus. Don’t be fooled though, most “soy” crisps aren’t actually majority soy, but wheat. Also, they are deep fried, but I won’t tell if you won’t.
Peanut Butter Sandwich – 4 stars
Students will be students, and students love a good PB sammich. If you want to be horrified, look up the suggested serving of peanut butter. No thanks. If it’s not an inch high, don’t bother. Peanut butter is there for you when your world comes tumbling down. When that person doesn’t show up for that group presentation. When that grade comes back and it’s not quite what you hoped for. Peanut butter wraps its arms around you in all its goodness. Try not to eat it from the tub.
A Pint – 5 stars
A pint of beer for lunch is a time-honoured tradition. On a lucky day you can snag one of these for a fiver, maybe. Almost every student has their own favourite watering hole where we can get together, have a good chat, bond a little bit. Not the most nutritious snack, not the healthiest, and must be enjoyed in moderation. Let’s be honest, sometimes it’s the only thing that will hit the spot.
Words by Simon Telford
Illustration by Sascha Tan