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How to Cook in College When You Actually Have a Kitchen

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Back to school? Don’t settle for subpar cafeteria food. Here’s how to be a master dorm chef, at least when you actually have kitchen access. Oh wait, that’s not your set-up? Then check out our guides for how to cook when you have no microwave or fridge, or when you do have ‘em.

You’ve got it all: counters, cabinets, stove, and fridge. Now we’re cooking!

Shopping
Space and equipment deliver no limit on the food you can put in your cart, but your budget, your time, and the room in your stomach might. Before you shop, you’ll have to find the discipline to curb any tendency to splurge: Perhaps picture defrosting and disposing of 12 pounds of uneaten chili at the end of the semester, and put back the family pack of ground beef? Once you’ve done that, you can make a true shopping list. Start by sketching out what you might dine on for breakfast, lunch, dinner—as well as for snacks.

Your first trip to the grocery store should include some products that will get you through an entire semester of eating, in addition to those that you’ll replenish regularly. Pick and choose your favorites from the lists below. You don’t have to buy everything at a single store; grab produce from the farmers’ market, stock up at the wholesale clubs, and stay loyal to any supermarket that sells good-quality ingredients at reasonable prices.

Breakfast: plain yogurt, milk, eggs, butter, peanut butter, English muffins, granola, apples, oranges, jam, honey.

Lunch: loaf of bread, pre-washed greens, carrots, peppers, celery, lemons, limes, roasted veggies from the prepared-foods section, herbs, capers, a block of cheddar, a can of tuna, a block of Parmesan.

Dinner: two kinds of protein (frozen is OK), rice, pasta, canned tomatoes or tomato sauce, lentils, dried spices (start with oregano, chili powder, cumin, and cinnamon), …read more

Source:: Bon Appetit