Coffee and bagels are available round-the-clock and a panini can be readily made in minutes. On-campus convenience stores provide all the chips and queso we could ever dream of, meanwhile our friends Ben and Jerry are merely a hop, skip and a jump away in the freezer section.
Then suddenly, the on-campus food gets old. We crave homemade meals, fresh fruits and veggies, and chicken breast that doesn’t slightly resemble rubber. But how do we deal with only a refrigerator and a microwave? You’d be surprised.
To turn your dorm room into a fully functioning kitchen, you first need to purchase flavorful necessities. Every good dorm-cook needs a consistent supply of salt, pepper, butter, lemon-juice, lime-juice and Sriracha – all found at either McLanahan’s or on campus convenience stores.
Now it’s time to get creative.
Junior Allie Galoozis is a dorm veteran. After two years in Pollock and South Halls, she mastered the art of dorm-cooking. Galoozis gave us the run-down on essential recipes for the dorm.
“I love those steam-in-bag veggies,” she says. “They sell them at cheaper grocery stores like Giant but also Wegman’s…”
Follow the directions listed on the bag and steam the vegetables in the microwave. After steaming, add lemon, butter, salt and pepper for a delicious vegetable medley.
Galoozis suggests either buying prepackaged bags or purchasing a large bag of rice and steaming it in the microwave with a microwave-safe container.
“You can always add lemon juice or Siracha to make it flavorful and more interesting than plain rice,” she says.
To mix it up, add the veggies and Siracha to the rice for a make-shift stir fry.
Make steamed rice and heat up black beans from a can. Galoozis suggests layering the rice, beans and Tostito salsa in a bowl and covering with cheese. Let it melt in the microwave, then eat with Tostito chips for a dorm-ready game day dip.
Who doesn’t love guac? Purchase avocados from McLanahan’s or the farmer’s market. Galoozis suggests buying them ripe so you can make it right away.
Slice up the avocados and spoon out that good stuff. Mix it in a bowl while adding lemon juice, lime juice, salt and pepper for, quite literally, the freshest guacamole you will ever taste.
Do you have a favorite dorm food hack? Enlighten us!
Photo by Rachel Johannes