Now that we are all settled in at college, let’s talk about something important. Food. Food is life, am I right? And if you’re like me, making the transition from home cooked meals to college cafeteria dining is about as appealing as sharing a bathroom with an entire dormitory floor. And unless you’re the son or daughter or Rachel Ray… chances are your parents did not send you into your freshman year with pots and pans designated for cooking your own homemade meals. No worries though… because we have a few ways you can put the oven in your common room to good use, and how to get that dusty, beat-up microwave from the 90s to do a lot more than burn popcorn. Here are a few of our own secret recipes for surviving college campus cafeteria dining.

Choco chip cookies

Campus Cookies

Are you missing mom’s home baked cookies? Well, we have the next best thing … college dorm fresh cookies! It is way too simple, all you have to do take an uber to the local Target or Hanaford and pick up some Tollhouse Cookie Dough or even ask grandma to pack some in your next care package! Making fresh baked cookies is the best way to not only relieve some stress and home sickness, but also to give you something to enjoy that actually tastes like home! You can make these cookies the original way or you can make them your own by adding an Oreo into the cookie, just simply wrap the dough around the cream cookie, or try some m&m cookies! Warning: the smell of home baked cookies is bound to spread through the building, so be prepared to share … or run back to your dorm room really fast.

nachos

Nachos

It’s game day! The Pats are on! You have your refreshments but are so craving some nachos to eat as you watch Brady (or Garoppolo) throw the perfect pass. Well, we have the solution for you! Nachos are beyond easy to make, even in a freshmen dorm setting. All you have to do is simply go down to the convenient store in the book store, grab some Tostitos chips and salsa and next time you’re at Hannaford or Target make sure you grab some shredded cheese (which you can easily keep in your fridge). Next all you have to do is compile your creation of cheese, chips, and maybe some veggies or meat and throw it in the oven. Make sure you watch your masterpiece as not all nachos take the same amount of time; we recommend leaving them in there for about 10 minutes at 375 degrees.

trail mix

Trail Mix(Homemade)

Are you sick of the basic dessert table set up every day? Or eating those stale rice crispy treats that were in your care package from two weeks ago? It is time to make your own creative snack, that is totally your own. You may not all know this, but most college dining halls totally hooks you up with some great snacks, from chocolate covered pretzels and jelly beans to m&ms and raisins, they have some great ingredients for your tasty mix. Just grab a large bowl, throw in some microwave popcorn (which you can get at the convenience store in the bookstore), pretzels, chocolate candies, Doritos, and whatever else will satisfy your sweet tooth and enjoy!

65075-img_2131

Ironed-Grilled Cheese

Being in college is the ultimate realization that you aren’t a kid anymore. You are responsible for your own actions and future and sometimes that’s honestly wicked scary. Try bringing it back to childhood with a warm, gooey grilled cheese to help relieve those tensions and remind you of simpler times when you didn’t have 3 research papers, a group project and an essay all due on the same day. To make things even more simple, you can grab bread as well as mac and cheese from the dining hall (or you can make easy mac using your microwave) for this super easy recipe. All you have to do is heat your iron to medium heat, butter each slice of bread, slap that mac and cheese in the middle of the bread and wrap your sandwich entirely in tin foil. Next, place the iron on the tin foiled sandwich for approximately 4 minutes on each side. Let it cool, unwrap that baby and you’ve got yourself a delectable, mouth-watering, saliva-inducing, cheese-filled sandwich at the tip of your tongue. DISCLAIMER: You should watch your sandwich under the iron to make sure it doesn’t burn as well as keep the tin foiled sandwich on an iron-safe board while heating. pasta Easy Microwave Pasta

Sometimes we all just want a huge bowl of North End pasta. But most of the time, we don’t want to change out of our sweats, leave the dorm and take that long trek into Boston. Rather, grab a microwave and the following ingredients to make a Maggiano’s worthy bowl of pasta. Make sure you have a microwave-safe bowl, and add about a half cup or cup of pasta (we bought our pasta from the school convenience store located in the library but you can also buy pasta from Target or Hannaford) to the bowl along with enough water so that the pasta is a few centimeters covered. Use the suggested cooking time for the pasta (you can find that on the box instructions) and add 3 minutes. And if you’re a red sauce type of person, just heat the sauce using the microwave for around 30 seconds before topping your pasta with it. P.S: For the best tasting pasta results, don’t forget to strain the noodles when they finish cooking!