Last week I shared the top 10 Things I Learned Living in a Dorm. The biggest thing I was dreading about dorm life, right after sharing a bathroom with seven other people, was not having a kitchen. I realize that might not top the list of concerns for most college students, but I didn’t earn the nicknames “Betty Crocker” and “Martha Stewart” in college for nothing! I like to cook and have since day one, so moving into a place with no oven or stove was a new (and unwanted) challenge for me. I’ve never been the biggest fan of microwave dinners, and we weren’t allowed to have hot plates in my residence hall, so I had to get crafty.
I studied my student handbook like I was preparing for a test to determine exactly what I was and was not allowed to have in my dorm room. Many kitchen appliances were strictly prohibited, but nothing was said about slow cookers! So off I went to Target to buy myself a $15 Crock-Pot. Soon I was salivating over the smells of pot roast, homemade soup, and shredded beef tacos.
But there were still some recipes I’d ordinarily make over the stove or in the oven that I wasn’t sure how to replicate. I did some Googling and was surprised to find microwave instructions for many meals that I hadn’t considered microwaveable.
I also realized many of my favorite sweets didn’t require baking and could easily be made with only a microwave! I was a pretty happy camper from that day on. I already had a spoon, a fork, a couple microwave-safe cereal bowls and a few cheap plates, but I bought a few more tools to expand my recipe options:
That was it; I was in business! Once I made my first batch of puppy chow in my new dorm, it suddenly felt like home.
But you definitely don’t have to limit yourself to chocolate-covered cereal if you’re living in a dorm. You’d be surprised by just how many options you have, whether you’re looking for breakfast or dessert, junk food or a healthy meal.
First, let’s get the easy ones out of the way. These are hardly recipes, but they are dorm room standards:
Now for the refrigerated section:
The microwave stars:
We also have our most unique offering, brought to you by that iron you never use on your clothes:
If you have a Crock-Pot or Instant Pot:
And don’t forget your Keurig and K-cups if you’re a coffee drinker! They might not be cheap, but they’re cheaper than going to Starbucks, right?
There you have it! All the inspiration you need to prepare a decent meal in your own dorm. Bon appetit!