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2 Yummy Recipes for Apartment Newbies

Whether you are a freshman or a senior moving into your first apartment, one of the question that always arises is “what am I going to cook/eat?” Here are two super simple and yummy recipes for people who may not be very experienced in the kitchen or who are pondering on what to cook.

Chicken Enchiladas


3 chicken breasts or 1 rotisserie style chicken

2 bell peppers (preferably red, yellow or orange)

1 sweet onion

Vegetable oil

2 cans of Cream of Chicken soup

1 8 oz tub of sour cream



1 package of 10 count soft flour tortillas

1 jar of salsa (your choice)

1 8 oz pack of shredded cheese (your choice)

1 9 x 13 inch aluminum pan


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 9×13 aluminum pan with non-stick cooking spray.

2. If using chicken breasts, place chicken breasts into a saucepan and pour in enough water to cover. Place over medium heat, bring to a boil and simmer until chicken meat is no longer pink, about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer chicken breasts to a bowl, allow to cool and shred the chicken meat with two forks. If using rotisserie style chicken, follow the video below to see how to break down a chicken. Also, make sure to remove all of the skin for this recipe. After breaking down the chicken make sure to shred it into bite-size chunks.

Video: How to Breakdown a Rotisserie Style Chicken

3. Chop the bell peppers and half an onion into small bite-size pieces and place in a frying pan with a small amount of vegetable oil at a medium-level heat. Allow these to cook while stirring intermittently, until the color of the peppers dulls and they appear to be translucent (or partially see through).

4. In a large mixing bowl, combine the two cans of cream of chicken soup and the sour cream. It should look smooth but not runny. Add a pinch of salt and pepper, then add your shredded chicken and vegetables. Fold these into the mixture until everything is evenly coated then add about one third of the bag of cheese and mix it in.

5. Lay out a paper towel beside your bowl. This is where you will be filling and rolling your tortillas. Take about half a cup of the mixture and lay it in the upper middle part of your tortilla and then follow this video on how to roll them. For this recipe, you do not wrap the individual tortillas. Once they are rolled, lay them in the pan.

Video: How to Roll an Enchilada

6. Once all the enchiladas are made and laid in the pan, take the salsa of your choosing and spread it evenly across the top of the enchiladas. They should be completely covered when you are done.

7. Place these in the oven for 25 minutes. Once the 25 minutes are up, sprinkle about one third of the bag of cheese on top of the enchiladas and place back in the oven for 5 more minutes. Let it cool once the time is up, then put your favorite toppings on them and enjoy!

You can make these vegetarian by replacing the chicken with black beans and excluding the cream of chicken soup or vegan by taking out all non-vegan ingredients and just using black beans.


Tater Tot Casserole


1 8 oz bag of shredded cheddar cheese

1 bag of tater tots

1 lb of ground beef

2 cans of cream of mushroom soup

1 9 x 13 inch aluminum pan


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 9×13 aluminum pan with non-stick cooking spray.

2. In a large frying pan over medium heat, brown the ground beef and season it with garlic powder, pepper and salt. Drain the grease once browned.

3. In a large mixing bowl, mix the browned ground beef and the two cans of cream of mushroom soup until everything is coated evenly.

4. Place the mixture into the aluminum pan and spread it evenly in the bottom of the pan.

5. Sprinkle half of the bag of cheese evenly onto the mixture and then evenly spread the tater tots on top of the cheese.

6. Place in the oven for 30 minutes. Once the time is up, layer the top of the tater tots with the rest of the cheese and cook for 15 more minutes. When the time is up, let cool and enjoy!

Don’t be afraid to try these easy and yummy recipes in your new apartment. Cooking by and for yourself may seem scary at first but, the more you cook the more you’ll learn!   

Photo Credit: Cover 1 2 3 4

Autumn is a junior at Virginia Commonwealth University studying Forensic Science with a concentration in Biology and minors in Anthropology, Biology, and Chemistry. She has an addiction to Starbucks and Panera Mac and Cheese and can usually be found with her nose in a book during her free time. She is also an active member of VCU's Rowdy Rams and the Forensic Science Student Club. In her free time, she loves to watch movies and hang out with her friends and family; including her beloved dog, Jake.
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