College Life

15 Quick and Easy Dorm Food Ideas You Need to Know (They’re Delicious!)

published Jul 5, 2024
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Blueberry breakfast.
Credit: Andrea Rivera Wawrzyn

It’s no secret that trying to create delicious dorm snacks is a challenge. My go-to snacks are quesadillas and any sort of toast — but those require an oven. Living in dorms provides a huge barrier with all of the appliance limitations. 

In times like this, you have to work with what you have. Developing a solid list of quick and easy go-to dorm-appropriate snacks is crucial to get you through those all-day study sessions. You can make the following dorm food ideas with either no appliances or just a microwave or fridge

1. Apple Nachos

These are a personal favorite! First, cut up an apple. Next, spread some peanut butter on each slice. Then add your preferred toppings. I usually top mine with coconut flakes, chocolate chips, granola, chia seeds, and honey.

2. Homemade Microwave Popcorn

This isn’t your typical microwavable popcorn. This popcorn is homemade, thanks to popcorn kernels, a brown paper bag, and melted butter or oil and salt of course. This could save you some money on expensive premade popcorn bags. 

3. Peanut Butter Banana Rice Cakes

Peanut butter is a key ingredient in so many snacks. For this one, grab two rice cakes (any flavor, but I usually go with plain salted rice cakes) and spread the peanut butter on them. Then add banana slices on top and drizzle with honey.

4. Spinach and Feta Mug Omelet

It’s possible to get fancy with your dorm snacks. For example, you can make an entire omelet in the microwave. All you need are a mug, two eggs, spinach, milk, salt and pepper, and a healthy heap of feta.

5. Fancy Cheese and Crackers

Try leveling up your standard cracker and cheese combo. I like to pair Mediterranean rosemary and sea salt baked crackers with pepper Jack cheese slices.

6. Hot Chocolate Mug Cake

It’s sweet treat o’clock! This mug cake only uses three ingredients: a hot cocoa packet, one egg, and one spoonful of yogurt. Oh, and some whipped cream on top!

7. Overnight Oats

I am all about overnight oats. I measure by eye, and put yogurt, milk, chia seeds, rolled oats, maple syrup, and cinnamon in a Mason jar in the fridge overnight. When I take it out to eat the next day, I top it with fresh fruit.

8. Veggies with Dipping Sauce

This is another super simple snack that you can make feel fancy. Get any veggie of your choice. My picks are carrots, cucumbers, and celery. Then choose your dipping sauce. I like ranch or peanut butter. 

9. Microwaveable Mac and Cheese

Premade microwavable mac and cheese is great, but it’s also nice to make a fresher mac yourself. And all you need is your chosen amount of dried macaroni, shredded cheese, milk, and salt and pepper. 

10. Cereal and Milk

It’s a classic late-night snack for a reason! I go Honey Nut Cheerios.

11. Hot Blueberry Oatmeal

There are so many ways to make oatmeal. This specific recipe features a hack: heating up frozen berries and pouring them over microwaved oatmeal. But you can also just make plain oatmeal and add toppings like peanut butter, cinnamon, honey, and even chocolate chips. There’s a lot of freedom with this one.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

12. Microwaveable Baked Potato

Eating a baked potato in a dorm room may seem odd at first, but it’s the best way to get that home-cooked meal feel — no oven required. You’ll need a russet potato, olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Top with sour cream and shredded cheese if you so desire!

13. Fruit Salad

Fruit salad is my go-to when I want something fresh. I’m always craving fruit extra while in college. You can mix any fruit that you love. I like strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, pineapple, and grapes all together. 

14. Iced Coffee

Okay, hear me out: Yes, this is a drink, but I find myself itching for a good iced coffee the same way I crave a snack now and then. You can of course buy an iced coffee, but I like to save money and make my coffee at home. I enjoy mixing cold brew, oat milk, and vanilla syrup for my coffee recipe.

15. DIY Candy Bar

Sweet treat you say? I got you! And before you question this, try it. Get a few dates, remove the pits, insert peanut butter, and top with chocolate chips and honey. To solidify that “chocolate bar” feel, freeze for a few hours before consuming. Thank me later.

Isabel Petrou

Public Communication

Isabel is an incoming sophomore at the University of Vermont. She is studying public communication. She grew up in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, where she frequented the beach often during the summer. Even though her heart belongs to the ocean, the mountains are becoming a close contender. Her favorite part of living in Burlington, Vermont, for college is its unique coffee shops. Her perfect day would consist of going to a cute café in the morning, then spending the day at the beach swimming and reading, then ending the day by shopping and getting dressed up for a nice dinner downtown. Through Dorm Therapy, Isabel is excited to be a voice for young adults embarking on their college journeys and she hopes to make this big transition of life more comfortable for others in the same place as her.

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SchoolUniversity of Vermont '26
MajorPublic Communication
FavesShopping, the beach, TV/movies, walks, reading, Taylor Swift
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