Dietetics students prepare to serve their meals at the 800 Café

The students each have the chance to be manager of the café

Every year the 800 Café opens to the public from mid-February to April on most Thursdays and Fridays. Because of the pandemic, the café opened a little later this year on March 4 and will be open until April 23. The 800 café is a student-led restaurant as students are able to take turns being the manager which allows them to choose and prepare a meal of their choice. Students are able to be as creative as they want when deciding what recipes they will use, but the meals must meet specific nutrient requirements such as being under 800 calories.

The meal that will be served on April 8 and 9 is a Meatless Monday-inspired recipe. The meal will include an Asian side salad with peanut dressing, a curried chickpea bowl as the entrée and fruit kabob to finish the meal.

Mikayla Koening will be the manager on Thursday, April 8 while Amanda Perrot will be the manager on Friday, April 9. Perrot said that she and Koening chose a plant-based meal option since it will include new recipes to be served. “Mikayla’s an athlete so she’s really focused on health and then I’ve always limited my meat consumption as well,” Perrot explained.

“All foods can be enjoyed in moderation but it’s important to choose nutrient-dense foods for overall health. While popular fatty meats such as bacon should be limited, lean dairy and other animal-based foods are also featured as part of other 800 café meals,” explained Dr. Stastny, Professor in Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences, instructor for the class and registered dietitian. “It is important to eat well-balanced meals which have enough protein, healthy fats, carbohydrates, plus vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. The 800 café has a variety of meals that meet these parameters.”

Perrot said she is excited to see how the meal will turn out as well as receive feedback from the customers who are given a survey to fill out after the meal. “I’m definitely interested in their feedback. There are some people that think a meal’s not complete if they don’t have meat so I’m hoping that we can kind of change their mind a little bit. Or just expose them to some new foods that they may not have thought of.”

On April 15, Jenna Rachey will be the manager while Hallie Mann will be the manager on April 16. The meal that will be served these two days will consist of a pineapple and strawberry kebob, a black bean burrito bowl as the entrée and a chocolate war cake.

Mann and Rachey explained that their meal is inspired by Mexican cuisine as they both enjoy Mexican food. Mann said that there were also a few factors they had to think about when choosing a meal. They must ensure that food can be prepared in two hours, the food doesn’t use the same kitchen equipment and they had to think about how the prepared food will hold up before being served.

Both Mann and Rachey are excited about when they will get to be the managers. “This class has taught me a lot about the time and effort that goes into running a foodservice operation, so during my day as manager, I’m looking forward to putting everything together and showing what I’ve learned,” Rachey said.

“I look forward to seeing my friends and family come enjoy a meal that I designed and oversaw production of. I know they’ll be supportive of me and all the hard work I have put in leading up to my meal,” Mann said.

Meals can be picked up in Family Life Center 312 between 11 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. for $10 per meal or $35 for four meals. Make reservations today by following the link:

When making your reservation, please make note of any allergies of your attendees and accommodations can be made.

Sign-up Genius reservations are preferred, but reservations can also be made by contacting the HNES department at or by calling (701) 231-7474. Additional dates and more information regarding the 800 Café may be found at

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