When someone asks you what you’ve been cooking while away at college, they aren’t talking about peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or microwave mac and cheese.
I love a good PB&J just as much as the next person, but I can’t live off of them (well, I mean I could). As my Intro to Nutrition professor tells us, it’s ALL about variety.
Cooking is fun; it makes you feel like an adult, and it’s relaxing! I used to have a very limited knowledge of recipes, and gravitated towards making the same three things. So, I reached out to college students near and far to find out what their favorite easy-to-make recipes are. I call this: The Beginner Bobby Flay Cookbook. Bon appetit!
- Vegan Banana Pancakes:
Before you ask, I am not vegan, and I still think these taste amazing! If you are a pancake addict like myself, these will become a staple in your apartment. I found this recipe over quarantine and have made them once a week ever since; they’re a crowd pleaser.. Warning: the recipe makes a lot of pancakes, so I tend to half it when I am just making them for myself.
2 mashed bananas
2 cups of almond milk
2 cups of flour
4 teaspoons of baking powder
1 tsp of vanilla (but I add way more)
All you have to do is mash the bananas and then add the rest of your ingredients! Use a measuring cup to pour the batter onto your pan, cook them and then inhale them!
2. Brownie Oatmeal:
My friend found this on Tik Tok, because where else would she have? She has sworn by it ever since, and I can’t wait to spice up my oatmeal routine.
½ cup rolled oats
1 cup almond milk
1 mashed banana
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp maple syrup
¼ tsp vanilla
Cook on low heat for 10 minutes until it looks like brownie batter! Add peanut butter, chia seeds or any other toppings that you want!
3. Salmon in a Pan:
Myself as well as others get scared when they think of cooking fish.. No need to fear! This easy recipe is amazing for beginners.
Salt and pepper
Rice or quinoa
Put the salmon on tinfoil and sprinkle it with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Place slice lemons on top and sprinkle chopped green onion over everything. Bake it at 425 for 15 minutes with the tinfoil closed, and then another 5 minutes with the tinfoil open. Serve over rice or quinoa!
4. Chicken Curry:
I am extremely biased toward this recipe because my roommate makes it for us every week; it’s sensational. I had never tried curry before she made it, and now I am never going back!
1 packet of chicken tenderloins
½ cup curry paste of your choice (She likes the yellow curry from Trader Joe’s)
½ can of coconut milk (can use any milk)
½ chopped yellow onion
Handful chopped mushrooms
Salt and pepper
Cook the onions and mushrooms until golden, then add seasoning to flavor. Cook the chicken until golden as well, adding the coconut milk and curry paste till it simmers. Serve over rice and arugula!
5. Zoodles with a Garlic Parmesan Cream Sauce:
Pasta is easy. But why not switch it up with ZOODLES? How fun?
For the sauce:
5 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1 small onion
1 whole head of garlic
1 ¼ cup chicken broth
1 ¼ cup heavy cream
½ cup parmesan cheese
2 tbsp parsley
(Can add paprika, chili powder and flour to the sauce for thickening and for some flavor)
Sautée zoodles in butter, minced garlic and salt for four minutes on high until the zoodles have a noodle-like texture!
So there you have it folks – a few easy, simple and delicious recipes to help jump-start your cooking career. Now try to prove to your mom that you’re not relying on frozen food!