Shake up mealtime routine with dorm-room recipes

Combine water and cake mix to make this Personal Cake in your dorm room. Amanda Prats // Staff Photographer

There are many perks of living in the dorms, such as a short commute to class and free toilet paper, but easy access to a full kitchen isn’t one of them. If you’re tired of dining-hall fare, don’t get stuck in a rut of TV dinners and pizza delivery – it’s not so good for your wallet or your waistline.

Instead, here are some recipe ideas to expand your culinary horizons, no kitchen required.

Microwave Egg Scramble

Before your morning coffee, put that mug to use by making a microwave egg scramble. Beat together two eggs and two tablespoons of milk, microwave for 45 seconds, stir, then microwave for another 45 seconds or until the eggs are set. Customize your scramble by adding cheese, chopped veggies or meat. Then put the scramble on a bagel or English muffin for a breakfast sandwich or in a tortilla with salsa for a breakfast burrito.

Cold-Brewed Tea

Dropping too much cash on Starbucks iced tea or fancy waters? Save a bundle by cold brewing your own tea. Put two teabags or two heaping tablespoons of the loose tea of your choice into 16 ounces of cold water and let steep overnight. Add your preferred sweetener for a refreshing beverage.

Ramen Salad

Give those packs of Ramen noodles a healthier spin by turning them into an Asian-inspired salad. Crush a pack of uncooked noodles over a bag of coleslaw mix. Add a handful of sliced almonds and toss with store-bought Asian salad dressing – or make your own with three parts oil, two parts vinegar, two parts sugar and the Ramen seasoning pack.

Cookie Balls

For an on-the-go snack, combine a third cup of nut butter, two mashed bananas, two and a half cups of dried oats and the sweet mix-in of your choice (chocolate chips, dried fruit – the choices are endless). Shape the mix into balls and chill the balls in the fridge. You can pack a few of these healthy cookie balls to munch on between classes.

Cookie balls are a healthy and portable snack to make in your dorm room. Amanda Prats // Staff Photographer

Microwaved Quesadillas

Microwave quesadillas make a great dinner, snack or even breakfast. Just put a cup of shredded cheese between two tortillas and microwave for one minute. This is another infinitely customizable recipe. Add salsa and black beans for a classic version, tomato sauce and pepperoni or mushrooms for an Italian spin, or sliced apples and ham for a sophisticated twist.

Personal Cake

Wash out that egg mug from breakfast and use it to make a personal cake! Mix three tablespoons of any cake mix with two tablespoons of water, and microwave for one minute. If you’re feeling fancy, top it off with some homemade whipped cream by filling a mason jar halfway with heavy cream and shaking until it thickens. If you’re extra hungry, double the recipe, make it in a bowl and microwave it for 90 seconds.

Combine water and cake mix to make this Personal Cake in your dorm room. Amanda Prats // Staff Photographer