College life presents many fun and exciting opportunities, but sometimes the food served in the cafeteria can leave a lot to be desired. Whether you cooked for yourself at home or not, you may not be sure how to prepare the kind of food you want to eat with the limitations of your dorm room. The good news is that there are a number of recipes you can easily make with just a few pieces of cooking equipment, which means you can save your money for a new outfit or a fun activity, instead of spending it on fast food. Today, we’ll look at 14 you can try on your own.

At Upper Crust Food Service, we know the difference that delicious and healthy food can make, which is why we offer meal plans for sororities and fraternities as well as catering services for special events. Contact our Top Rated National® food catering service to learn what we can offer your chapter and make Greek life even better.

Microwave Meals

1. Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs

You may have heard that spaghetti squash is a great alternative to traditional pasta, especially if you’re trying to reduce your carb intake. That being said, spaghetti squash can be fairly difficult to cut in half to get to the delicious inside. Fortunately, there are two options to help with this. You can either purchase pre-cut and sliced spaghetti squash, or you can poke some holes in it and microwave for 5 minutes to soften it up.

Scoop out the insides, mix with oil, salt, and pepper, and microwave for about 10 to 15 minutes. Shred the squash into noodle-like strands. Microwave, covered, the meatballs with pasta sauce for about two minutes or until the meatballs are fully heated through. Spoon the meatballs and sauce on top of the spaghetti squash, garnish with Parmesan, and enjoy!

2. 10-Minute Loaded Baked Potato

Baked potatoes make a great meal, as they are filling and satisfying. Simply poke some holes into the potato with a fork, rub with oil and salt, and place on a plate in the microwave. Be sure to add the slices of bacon to the plate as well, and microwave for seven to nine minutes until the bacon is crispy and the potato is tender. Be careful not to burn the bacon. Allow the bacon to cool before crumbling. Slice the potato in half, fluff the insides with a fork, sprinkle with cheese, and then microwave for another 30 seconds. Top with sour cream, crumbled bacon, and chives.

3. Omelette in a Mug

If morning isn’t your favorite time of day and you wake up at the last possible minute before rushing off to class, then you’ll love this omelette in a mug that takes only three minutes to make! In fact, you can prepare the ingredients the night before so it will be ready to place in the microwave when you wake up. Simply add the egg and other omelette ingredients that you want, cook for two to three minutes, stirring halfway through the cooking process. Be careful to make sure the egg doesn’t bubble over. That’s all there is to it, so enjoy!

4. BBQ Chicken Nachos

While this recipe is already fairly easy, you can save yourself even more time and prep work by purchasing a rotisserie chicken at your local grocery store. Mix the chicken with barbecue sauce and spread evenly over a bed of tortilla chips. Spread the pico de gallo, cheese, and green onions evenly across the top, and then microwave for one to three minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Don’t forget to dollop cream cheese and guacamole on top before digging in.

5. Mac ‘n Cheese

Mac ‘n cheese is a comfort food for a reason — it’s warm, cheesy, and filling. Before you go out and purchase a box mix, however, try this quick five-minute microwave recipe. Mix elbow macaroni with water and salt in a microwave-safe mug. Heat up for two to three minutes and stir before adding in the milk, cheese, salt, and pepper. Stir once more, place back in the microwave for another 30 seconds, and enjoy a new way of eating mac ‘n cheese.

6. Chicken Quesadilla

You can easily make chicken quesadillas in your dorm room with nothing more than a microwave. Microwave the tortillas until slightly crispy, remembering that they will dry out a little as they cool. Mix some shredded chicken or chicken tenders with bell peppers and taco seasoning until everything is evenly coated. Cook the meat mixture for about one to two minutes, or until the peppers are soft. Spread the mixture evenly over one tortilla, sprinkle with cheese, and then cover with the remaining tortilla. Cook for one more minute, slice, and serve.

7. Fried Rice

Fried rice is not only easy to make, but you can also create variations by adding different types of meat. For this version, however, we are keeping it sans meat. Use a large mixing bowl to combine the rice, water, soy sauce, sesame oil, and bacon. Stir until everything is evenly coated, and then microwave for six to eight minutes, until the rice is fully cooked. Mix in frozen peas and carrots. In a microwave-safe mug, beat the eggs with some salt. Microwave both the mug and the bowl for about one to two minutes. Break the egg into small sections, mix with rice, top with scallions, and enjoy!

Waffle Iron Meals

1. Pizza

We know you probably think of waffles as a semi-sweet breakfast, but we’d like to challenge you to see the possibilities that go beyond traditional breakfast fare. Make your waffle mix and cook as usual, then sprinkle with your favorite cheese while the waffle is still hot, allowing the cheese to melt. Add your favorite toppings, slice, and experience pizza like never before.

2. Hash Browns

Hash browns are arguably one of the best parts of a traditional hot breakfast. In fact, we think they make the perfect accompaniment to your scrambled, fried, or over-easy eggs. Depending on the space and number of kitchen tools you have available, you could either purchase two potatoes or simply buy a bag of pre-shredded potatoes. No matter which option you choose, make sure the shredded potato is as dry as possible before placing in the waffle iron, so that you’ll get the nice crispy outcome you want. Press the shredded potato onto the waffle iron and cook for five minutes before flipping cooking an additional five minutes. Serve next to your favorite eggs, and enjoy.

3. Biscuits and Gravy

Take your biscuits and gravy for a spin by making waffles instead of biscuits. Simply make the waffles as normal in a waffle iron, and then top with some delicious meat gravy. You can either make the gravy on your own or purchase it ready-made in the store. Don’t forget to heat up the gravy before drizzling over the waffle to ensure that everything is nice and warm.

4. All-Purpose Bread

When most people hear the word waffle, they think of breakfast, or something that must be drizzled with syrup. We love to look at the possibilities that can be made with some different ingredients and a willingness to look outside the box. With that in mind, consider mixing in some shredded cheddar and diced ham to your waffle mix to make ham and cheddar waffle bread. You could also make waffle banana bread, waffle milk bread, and waffle chocolate chip bread. Once you begin to look for new combinations, you’ll discover the possibilities are almost limitless!

5. Cinnamon Roll Waffles With Cream Cheese Glaze

If you love cinnamon rolls, then you’re sure to love this recipe! Instead of breaking apart the rolls to bake in the oven, try cooking them one at a time in your waffle iron. They will spread out quite a bit as they cook, which will probably mean that you have more leftover cinnamon rolls than normal. Drizzle the cream cheese glaze across the waffle as soon as you remove it, allow it to cool a little, and dive in!

6. Falafel Waffles (Wafalafels)

Falafel is absolutely delicious, but it can be very challenging to eat without making a mess. With that in mind, you might consider turning any leftovers from your next falafel into a waffle. Brush the pita with olive oil and place in a preheated waffle iron. Cook until crisp and then serve with the condiments of your choice. We particularly enjoy tahini.

7. Fried Chicken and French Toast

Making fried chicken is fairly easy, but can prove hazardous in the average dorm room due to the high temperatures required for frying. With that in mind, we recommend picking up fried chicken at your local grocery store to save time and avoid setting off fire alarms. Keep the fried chicken warm in the microwave while you mix up some french toast mix in a bowl. Dip your bread into the mix and place on the waffle iron. Once the waffles are cooked, top with chicken and syrup, and enjoy this delicious variation on the traditional dish of fried chicken and waffles.

Your Top Rated National® Food Catering Choice

We hope that the recipes we’ve shared with you will inspire you to try your own hand at preparing delicious and nutritious meals in your dorm room. While it’s nice to take a break from cafeteria food, there is simply no comparison when it comes to the college catering services that we provide at Upper Crust Food Service. Whether you are in a fraternity or sorority, we offer meal plans that are sure to suit your needs and budget. Contact Upper Crust today to learn more, and get the quality food your chapter deserves.