Cooking in college is tricky, but not impossible
Online resources such as Not Your Average College Food and Spoon University make it easier for students to fit meals into both their budgets and schedules
Cooking in college? Ain’t nobody got time for that!
I disagree. With a little bit of planning and skill, anyone can cook. But sometimes it’s hard to find where to begin.
Students who cook in college likely learned the craft under the loving direction of a family member while they were young. Those are great people to hang around while appearing pathetic and hungry, because they’ll probably feed you. However, when they’re not around, you’re stuck with cereal.
Thankfully, the Internet exists to take the place of the caring parental figure, and seems to be as obsessed with food as you are.
I love to cook — and yes, my dad did teach me when I was younger — but in college when I’m tight on time, with an even tighter budget, I tend to stick to the basics. Here are some cool and unique blogs great for college students and beginners. Or both.
Bed Bath & Beyond maintains a wonderful blog with recipes and tips, as well as a web series called Cooking at College, featuring Sam the Cooking Guy. In these short tutorials he covers how to cook with no equipment, just a microwave or a single pan.
These simple and quick videos are great for beginners who want to master the most basic way to get food from the fridge to their mouth in the quickest way possible.
Spoon University is another website to aid students with their cooking. Their amazing recipe search feature allows you to choose anything from time of day, types of dishes, specific ingredients, special diets, microwave friendly recipes or even skill set — which includes easy, medium or advanced cooking techniques. They also have a ‘cooking for one’ section and my personal favorite — five ingredients or less.
For a more healthy approach to food, check out Not Your Average College Food. Created by Emily Hu, a student pursuing public health at Johns Hopkins University, the entire blog is aimed at students low on time and resources, but who still want a fresher alternative to cafeteria food. The recipes range from those that require four ingredients or less to no-bake desserts.
Lazy Ass Meals has tons of in-a-mug recipes, along with other, well, lazy ass meals.
Perfect for any need, Lazy Ass Meals promotes recipes like Stupidly Easy Cheesy Ham and Egg Bread Bowl and Dead Easy Scrambled Eggs In A Mug, along with tips for how to cook rice that doesn’t come out of a cup and how to make an easy carbonara (perfect for impressing “special friends” on any upcoming holidays).
Students on the go should look for one-pot recipes, while students with a tight budget can always amp up their ramen game by adding meats, veggies or eggs. For the mug-loving student, BuzzFeed has tons of lists for you, and for the visually inclined, there are oodles of beautiful cooking-related infographics just a search away.
Even Reddit has a respectable college cooking section, and cooking for beginners subreddit.
We come to college to learn new things — why can’t cooking be one of them? There are tons of easy ways to get started for any type of living situation.
Even if you try one new recipe a month, you’re better off than you were last year. And if you really screw up, there’s always pizza.