4 Home-Cooked Recipes For College

Some of the most popular dorm foods for college students are macaroni and cheese cups or ramen noodles. Even with the dining hall food options, these meals are going to get less appealing as the year goes on.

If you have your own apartment or house, you’ll definitely want more variety for your meals. I’ve been lucky enough to live in an apartment for the past two years and let me tell you, cooking like your mom takes practice.

After finding simple recipes, I’ve gathered some easy meals that any college student can master. There are so many options for cooking in an apartment, but these are some of my favorite recipes to make for my roommates and I.

Veggie Pizza


2 Pillsbury Crescent Roll Packages
1 8 oz. Cream Cheese
Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning
(according to how
much you want to put on pizza)
Red Pepper

Spray a pan and lay out the crescent roll dough as your crust. Place the pan in the oven at the appropriate temperature and time listed on the package. In a separate bowl, microwave the 8 oz. block of cream cheese until softened. Mix in the Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning until the mixture acquires the taste you desire (I recommend about 2 spoonfuls).

Chop up the vegetables on a cutting board. Once the crescent roll dough is finished cooking, let it cool for about 15 minutes. Then, spread your cream cheese and ranch mixture on top as the first layer. Finally, sprinkle your chopped veggies on top as the finishing touch.



1 lb. ground beef
1 onion
2 cans tomato soup
1 jar of salsa
1 can Hunts diced tomatoes
1 can kidney beans
1 packet of taco seasoning or chili powder
sour cream
shredded cheese
olive oil

In a large pot, begin by sautéing your onions in some olive oil (chop in whichever fashion you desire). Make sure to have your stovetop setting on high to ensure that the onions cook fairly quickly. Once the onions are browning, add in your ground beef.

Cook the meat until it is fully browned and lower the heat down to a lower setting. Add in your cans of tomato soup, Hunts diced tomatoes, kidney beans, and jar of salsa. Next, add in the packet of taco seasoning (you can use chili powder as a replacement here if you want a more mild taste).

Let the pot simmer for about an hour and then enjoy! Add some sour cream and shredded cheese on top for an added flavor. This recipe makes several servings so you’ll have plenty for your roommates and even leftovers.

CousCous Salad (from www.foodnetwork.com)


1 ½ cups water
1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup uncooked couscous
1 cup cherry tomatoes (quartered)
5 tbsp. pitted and sliced kalamata olives
5 tbsp. chopped parsley leaves
4 oz. feta cheese crumbled

Dressing Ingredients:
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ tsp. salt
Pinch of black pepper

In a medium saucepan, bring the water and the 1 tsp. oil to a boil. Stir in the couscous. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 2 minutes. Uncover and fluff with a fork. In a separate bowl, mix the ingredients for the dressing: olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Add remaining ingredients to the couscous and toss with dressing.

A bonus to this recipe is that it only takes 15 minutes to make everything!

Sausage and Veggie Pasta


2 cups spaghetti
1 package sausage
1 orange pepper
1 handful spinach
1 clove garlic
1/3 onion
1 cup cherry tomatoes (sliced)
1 jar marinara sauce
olive oil

In a large skillet pan, begin by sautéing your chopped onions and peppers in some olive oil. Once browned, add in your crushed clove of garlic and chopped sausage. In a separate pot, start to cook your cups of spaghetti. By the time your water boils and you add the pasta, your skillet ingredients should be nearly done.

Add the handful of spinach and sliced tomatoes to your skillet. Sauté all of these ingredients until they are as crisp as you want them to be. After a few minutes, the spinach will shrink down. By the time those ingredients are done, your pasta should be done too. Drain the pasta in a strainer over your sink.

Put some pasta on a plate; add your sausage and vegetables, and then top off with your marinara sauce. Enjoy!

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Stephanie Vlk

Stephanie Vlk

Stephanie Vlk is a junior at the University of Dayton pursuing a degree in communication with a concentration in electronic media as well as a minor in English. While not in class, Stephanie is involved in a service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega, and a honors professional fraternity, Phi Beta Chi. Outside of academic and community activities, she enjoys dancing hip hop, reading, spending time with friends, and doing yoga.