Living in a college dorm is tough enough, but Kent State’s on campus food options do not always hit the spot.
It is easy to fall into the rut of eating the same thing from Rosie’s, Hippie Chick’n or spending too much on fast food. That is especially hard in the winter when everything feels more dull.
Luckily, eating in your dorm is not always as hard as it seems. There’s no need to be stuck with only ramen and microwaveable meals.
Soup is so cozy and comforting on a snowy day. There are always on-campus options for this at the dinings hall or even Rosie’s.
Also I recommend getting family to make your favorite kind and freeze some until it can make it to your dorm. This can work for other meals too, but soup is particularly easy to freeze.
Pasta is also super easy depending on what you have. You can boil noodles in one of the dorm’s kitchens, electric kettles or even some gadgets that make it easy to cook them in the microwave. You get your cooked noodles, add some sauce and any other topping that your heart desires and you have a wonderful meal.
I also find the store bought packets of flavored rice super easy. It can be a side to some chicken nuggets or a sandwich or you could just eat it as is (I have done it a few times, so there is no judgment).
Fruit like apples and cherries are still in season in November. Bananas, oranges, persimmons and pears are the next best quality fruits to eat throughout the farmers off-season.
I know it can be hard to eat things that are on the fresh side throughout college. Everyone is too busy doing something else and then all of a sudden the produce has spoiled.
It happens to the best of us, just try to buy in smaller batches that seem more manageable and go for the food that seems most appealing in the moment so that you want to eat it.
Cauliflower is another in-season produce. Chop it up and you can bake it in the dorm’s kitchen or make it in the air fryer. This can also be applied to broccoli, potatoes and almost any other vegetable.
The air fryer is actually a lifesaver for so many foods. I use it for dinosaur nuggets, any sort of frozen snack (mozzarella sticks, onion rings, etc), veggies and leftovers.
Social media is home to so many air fryer recipes. You can find something to cook that is more on the adventurous or the comfort food side of things.
Also if fresh produce is not your vibe, don’t worry, the frozen sections is just as worth it.
Frozen foods work just as well with the oven and air fryer.
I also really like to use frozen fruits and (some) vegetables for smoothies. Which is not the best winter food, but it does help get in extra servings of your produce. Every little bit counts.
Defrosted blueberries go really nicely on waffles and other breakfast foods like pancakes and yogurt. The same goes for many other fruits, you just have to find what you like best.
My favorite wintery treat is hot cocoa. Get a box of the pre-made mixes or make it your own with two tablespoons of cocoa powder, two tablespoons of sugar, a pinch of salt, one cup of milk and a small amount of vanilla extract.
I know a lot of people have Keurigs they can use or even electric kettles. However, the easiest route is throwing some milk in a mug and putting it in the microwave for a few minutes.
It keeps you warm and comfortable. You can drink some in your bed with a movie or put it in a tumbler and bring it to class.
And if all else fails and none of this feels right for your next meal, there are so many local restaurants around Kent to try.