How to make healthy Ramen noodles

Linda Conway Eriksson - Contributing Columnist

One of my grandchildren, Katie, is preparing to head off to college in the fall. Her mom is a little bit shell-shocked. Dad seems to be handling it well.

Jenny, like a lot of the rest of us when faced with the same situation, wonders where the time went and how it happened so fast.

My answer? You must have blinked.

Having seen three out of four children and two of seven grandchildren start college already, I’ve had time to absorb the shock. I’ve adjusted to the fact that my grandchildren, like their parents before them, will leave the nest sooner or later. College is a pretty good destination.

The incoming freshmen will have some things to get used to, not the least of which will be the institutional food. There’s a reason the “Freshman Fifteen (pounds)” is practically a fact of life. A variety of food to choose from doesn’t guarantee healthy meals. At many colleges “fried” is a food group.

When choosing food to keep in the dorm or student apartment, the two categories freshmen look for seem to be cheap and fast. One packaged item fills the bill on both accounts: Ramen.

All you have to do to make packaged Ramen noodles edible is boil water, add the package contents, stir and wait a minute.

On the other hand, there are healthy ways to eat Ramen that are just about as fast to prepare. I especially like this one.

Good luck to all the incoming college freshmen. Start out with healthy eating habits and you’ll avoid the Freshman Fifteen.

Healthier Ramen

This couldn’t be simpler and tastes wonderful.

Prepare Ramen according to directions on the package. Divide into two soup bowls.

Top each bowl of Ramen with one or more of the following:

2 tablespoons white meat chicken

1 tablespoon chopped green onions

2 sheets nori freeze-dried seaweed, cut in strips

1 leaf bok choy, cut in strips

1 poached egg

a handful of frozen veggies

1/2 teaspoon Frank’s Hor Sauce

Miso concentrate to taste

Sliced hot dogs or sausages

A dash of Yuzukosho (a condiment that contains salt, hot peppers and Yuzu, a Japanese citrus fruit)

After a few tries you’ll figure out what you like best.

Serves two.

Linda Conway Eriksson

Contributing Columnist

Linda Conway Eriksson can be reached at

Linda Conway Eriksson can be reached at