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Easy Dinner Ideas for the Lazy College Girl

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Holy Cross chapter.

Living off campus this year has definitely taught me the art of quick, clean, and (mostly) healthy cooking. Getting home from class or the library, all I want is a yummy, fast, easy, and filling meal for dinner. I’ve mastered a few different meals, but still have a long way to go in the cooking department. If this sounds like you, the meals below are relatively cheap, fast, and easy dinners for the overbooked college student.

  1. Pasta and Chicken Sausage

This meal is definitely a go-to for me and my roommates. This simple dinner is amazing plain or with sauce and cheese, but for some extra protein I also like using Banza pasta (I find mine at Whole Foods or Target). To add some veggies, I also like mixing in spinach, tomatoes, and mushrooms. In total, this probably takes 15 minutes to make and is a nourishing, delicious dinner.

  1. Loaded Salad

Adding some protein, nuts, grains, and cheese to salads has been a game changer for me. Chicken sausage, beans, or fish are protein sources that I love to put on top of some spinach or arugula. An absolute game changer for my salads has been the addition of Trader Joe’s sweet and spicy pecans (trust me, they’re amazing), and some gorgonzola cheese. I throw in some veggies and dressing and this meal is colorful, quick, and filling. 

  1. Salmon and Rice

Salmon has been a favorite dinner of mine for a while, and I’ve finally learned how to make my own (maybe not restaurant quality, but it’s the effort that counts). I buy salmon filets at either Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods (which can be kept in the freezer) and season them with olive oil and salt and pepper. This simple salmon, along with some brown rice and greens/soy sauce and Cholula (or the Trader Joe’s Japanese Fried Rice which is amazing), is another easy and delicious meal.

  1. Gnocchi

More specifically, Trader Joe’s gnocchi is another easy, quick, and yummy dinner. I love cauliflower gnocchi, and usually make it with vodka sauce, veggies, and parmesan cheese. For added protein, chicken sausage is also amazing (the sweet potato gnocchi is also to die for!)

  1. Breakfast for dinner

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, and I am definitely a proponent of Breakfast for dinner. Avocado toast, eggs, or oatmeal are all nutrient-dense, easy, and delicious meals, and I look forward to having them in the morning or evening.

Honorable mention: Trader Joe’s Frozen Meals

On days that I really don’t have time to cook, I love throwing a TJ’s frozen meal in the microwave. My favorites are the veggie pad thai, cauliflower rice bowl, and veggie spring rolls.

Caroline Sullivan

Holy Cross '23

A Lover of books, coffee, and style from Long Island, New York!