Ok, so I was never a starving college student, but I won’t ever confess to some of the things I ate as a grad student! Part of my problem was the isolation of the campus. There was no quick way for me to run to the store for a study break snack, so I had to get creative with what I had on hand. Ahem, but I digress. Whether you're off to college for the first time or are a parent worried that Junior will miss your home-cooked meals, here's some ways that every vegetarian and vegan college student can bring some home-cooked food into their life.
In the dorms
Who doesn't like midnight snacks, especially if you're up late studying? Vegans love snacks! Many dorm cafeterias, however, are only open for certain hours. When I lived in the dorms as a new college student, I was one of those people who was constantly sneaking an apple or a granola bar into my bag to eat for later.
Some dorms allow students to have an electric hot plate or a microwave, while some don't. If you can, why not provide your college student with an electric wok or a crock-pot? I find both of these options to be much more versatile than a simple hot plate.
Cooking with a wok
You can cook up lots of vegetarian one-pot meals with a wok. Of course, you can make vegetable stir-fries, but I've also often used my wok to make soups, and even, on occasion, to boil water and make pasta or noodle dishes. Your college student can even use their wok to cook up some dirt-cheap vegetarian ramen if they're on a tight budget.
Easy One-Pot Stirfry Recipes:
- Easy Tofu and Veggie Stirfry
- Low-Fat Chinese Vegetable Stirfry
- Sweet Cabbage and Pineapple Stirfry
- Chinese Stirfry with Hoisin Sauce
- More Vegetarian and Vegan Stirfry Recipes
Plenty of healthy soups, stews, and casseroles can be baked in a crockpot. And, perhaps a better selling point, is that it can also be used to make junk food such as bean dip or chocolate cake for those late night study sessions or midnight cravings.
Here are some easy crockpot recipes suitable for college cooking in the dorms. Most of these can be prepared with dry ingredients that you can keep on hand in your dorm, but, of course, if you have a fridge, you can always add fresh vegetables or some tofu to make it a bit healthier.
Easy Vegetarian Crockpot Recipes for College Students:
- Curried Rice and Lentils
- Easy Crockpot Bean Dip
- Crockpot Lentil Soup
- Easy Crockpot Spanish Rice Recipe
- Crockpot Refried Beans
- Crockpot Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake
- Vegetarian Crockpot Chili
- Cherry Pie Crockpot "Dump" Cake
Cooking with Ramen
For all those starving artists as well as the college students out there, here are some easy vegetarian ramen recipes, most of which take just a few minutes to make. But ramen doesn't just have to be food for the not-yet-wealthy. By adding veggies or tofu, you can make a complete meal for the entire family in just a few minutes, since ramen takes less time to cook than other noodles or pasta. Want an even cheaper meal? Buy your ramen in bulk, or, stop by your local Asian grocer where you'll find that ramen costs about half as much than in the regular grocery. Just be sure to read the label to make sure you're picking out a vegetarian ramen package.
Easy Vegetarian Ramen Recipes
- Quick Flavored Ramen Recipe
- Basic Vegetarian Ramen Curry
- Quick, Cheap Ramen Noodle Dinner with Eggs
- Vegetarian Ramen "Goulash"
- Tomato Tofu and Ramen Soup