Campus Cooking: The Advanced Course

Get the inside scoop on how to cook in the (questionable) comfort of your own dorm room.

Prerequisite for this course: Campus Cooking 101.

Rise and Shine
Mom was right: breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A carton of yogurt topped with a handful of cereal and dried fruit makes a great breakfast on the go, but for something a little more filling, consider a breakfast burrito made with scrambled eggs, cheese, and precooked bacon or sausage. The fillings can be changed to suit any taste and, by using the microwave, a breakfast burrito can be assembled and ready to eat in less than 5 minutes.

How to cook scrambled eggs in the microwave:

  • Crack eggs into a microwave-safe bowl. Add milk or water and beat well with a fork.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and microwave at 70 percent power for 1 1/2 minutes. If eggs are not cooked to desired doneness, continue cooking in 20 second intervals, until done.
  • Season with salt and pepper.

Late for class? You still have to eat, so make a smoothie! (Hint: rinse out the blender before you run out the door so you don’t come home to a cleanup nightmare.)

Iron Works
The college student’s real secret weapon when it comes to dorm room dining is the clothes iron. Yes, it’s true: this commonplace household appliance can turn out splendid grilled cheese sandwiches and quesadillas, often in less time than it takes to heat a skillet or griddle. (For extra credit, rent “Benny and Joon.”) Caution: keep a layer of heavy duty aluminum foil between the iron, the food, and the surface you’re ironing on. Ever try to pick melted cheese out of an iron? It’s not pretty.

  • Heat iron to cotton or linen setting. Turn off steam.
  • On your work surface, place a sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil large enough to accommodate bread or tortilla. Place bread or tortilla on foil and top with desired filling. Cover with remaining slice of bread or tortilla. Cover sandwich or quesadilla with another sheet of aluminum foil. Fold foil to seal edges and make a packet.
  • Press iron on surface of foil-covered packet, passing iron over entire area for about 30 seconds. Carefully turn entire packet over and iron again for about 30 seconds, taking care not to tear the foil. Unwrap an edge and check for doneness. If contents are not hot or cheese is not melted, rewrap the foil and repeat the ironing step.

DIY Dorm Room Dining
The Basics

Easy and comforting.

Tuna Fish Salad

Photo by ALFANN02

Impress Your Roommates

Simple recipes that make you look like a genius.

Microwaved Potatoes Lyonnaise

Photo by lutzflcat

Eat Your Veggies

Good for your health and earth-friendly, too.

Nana's Acorn Squash

Photo by Molly

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Slow cooker soups to warm you up on a cold day. (Hint: use the scaling tool on the recipes if you need to cut down the number of servings.)

Alison's Slow Cooker Vegetable Beef Soup

Photo by LynnInHK

All-Nighter Snacks

Because studying at 3 a.m. is hungry business.

Extra Easy Hummus

Photo by larkspur

Microwaved Sweets

Don’t indulge too often or you’ll pack on the “Freshman 15!”

Microwave Baked Apples

Photo by Holiday Baker