What College Students Ate in 2014

Unsurprisingly, there are plenty of unusual habits when it came to college eating habits over the past year.

Elizabeth Hoyt

November 18, 2014

What College Students Ate in 2014 What College Students Ate in 2014

In college, it seems that eating habits usually fall into one of two categories: a priority or a chore. Some students love to eat while others simply eat to live between study sessions.

Either way, most students don’t like to waste time thinking about their next meal when they’re hungry and, as a result, often resort to ordering takeout because, well, it’s easy.

So, what better way to learn about the majority of college students’ eating habits this year than through a food ordering company?

After all, most students have ordered take out at one point or another, and GrubHub Inc. is the nation’s leading online and mobile food ordering company, encompassing brands like GrubHub, Seamless, Menupages, and Allmenus.

GrubHub teamed up with Spoon University* to uncover some of college students’ most unusual eating habits in 2014.

Unsurprisingly, there are plenty of unusual habits when it comes to college eats – at least comparatively speaking.

Here’s what they discovered took place over the past year:

Top 5 Foods College Students
Ordered Most in 2014:

1. Pizza
2. Fries
3. Wings
4. Soup
5. Salad

Compared to Typical Americans,
College Students Ordered A LOT More in 2014:

179% More Cookies
150% More Calzoni (Apparently, that’s plural, who knew!)
114% More Chicken with Broccoli
92% More General Tso’s Chicken
88% More Sesame Chicken
83% More Energy Drinks

Compared to Typical Americans, College Students Ordered Less This Year…

• When it’s early. In fact, early morning orders (which take place between 6 a.m. – 9 a.m.) are 66% less likely. On the flip side, late orders (which take place between 10 p.m. – 2 a.m.) are twice as common!
• Students are less likely to order coffee – 15% less likely, to be exact.
26% less likely to order spicy foods.
• College students request healthy substitutions 23% less commonly.
• Order sweets or desserts 18% less than typical Americans.
• Students are also 18% less likely to use common manners like “please” and “thank you” in making their requests. Bummer. Please remember to say thanks next time!


*Data and rankings found by GrubHub and Spoon University were “based on orders placed by college students at hundreds of college campuses during the 2013-2014 school year (9/1/13-12/15/13 and 1/15/14-5/1/14).”

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