When I used to think of college, I would think of Top Ramen and canned foods. Well, not anymore! Not only are the dining plans and locations improving, but by having a grocery store nearby and a microwave in the room, you can have and make some pretty healthy, awesome meals! Keep reading for some yummy, easy, healthy recipes for the microwave that you can have at any time of the day.
1. Vegetable Omelet
If you’re ever in a time crunch before an exam, you can easily make some eggs in your room! Protein is good for not only your brain, but it will give you the energy you need to last the day. If you have some veggies or cheese in the fridge, you can easily mix them in!
To make one omelet you will need: 2 eggs, 2 tablespoons of water, sprinkle of salt and pepper, 1 teaspoon of butter, and ½ cup of fillings! Mix the eggs, water, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Microwave the butter on a plate for about 30 seconds, cover the plate evenly. Pour the eggs onto the plate and cover with plastic wrap, microwave on HIGH for 2-3 minutes. When the top is settled and there is no more visible liquid, put veggie toppings on one side and fold over.
2. Black Bean & Cayenne Pepper Sweet Potato
To me, a baked potato is the ultimate comfort food and one of the most versatile foods on the planet. Because potatoes lack taste, you can make them savory or sweet! This recipe works with both a good ‘ol russet potato and a sweet potato. My favorite toppings for a sweet potato are black beans and cayenne pepper.
To make one baked potato you will need: 1 potato (sweet or russet), seasoning, and whatever topping you like! Scrub the potato and prick it with a fork multiple times. Wet a paper towel and wrap it around the prepared potato. Place in the microwave for 5 minutes, then turn it over and cook 3-5 minutes more. Take it out and let it cool, open the potato and mash the insides. If you’re adding cheese, place the cheese on top and put it back in the microwave for a minute to melt the cheese.
3. Blueberry Almond Flaxseed Oatmeal
Oatmeal is another one of those very flavorless, versatile meals. You can make it sweet or savory if you want to! To make it savory, you just have to get over the mental block of picturing the gooey, sweet, oatmeal you’ve grown used to. I have tried it savory, and I have to say, with enough salt and some veggies, it is not the worst thing I’ve eaten. Although there are three types of oats, quick-cooking ones are the cheapest and probably the most well-known.
To make one serving of oatmeal you need: ½ cup of quick cooking oats, 1 cup of water, and whatever toppings you want! Simply combine the oats and water in a medium bowl and microwave on HIGH for 1.5- 2 minutes. Make sure the bowl is deep because the water will boil up, and who has time to clean a microwave? When the oatmeal is cooked feel free to add some almonds, blueberries, and flaxseed for extra nutrients!
4. Avocado, Kale & Corn Quinoa Salad
Quinoa is a staple in any vegan or gluten free lifestyle. It can be used as a substitute for oatmeal if you add enough milk and can be placed in a salad for a boost of protein and whole grains. Quinoa is not the cheapest ingredient out there, but because it can be used in so many ways, it’s worth the cost. There are different colors of quinoa, but don’t be alarmed they all cook and taste the same. It keeps in the fridge for about a week, so you can make extras and keep reusing it!
To make 4 servings you will need: 1 cup quinoa (make sure it’s rinsed, otherwise you may be eating some pebbles) and 2 cups of water or broth. Place the quinoa and water into a bowl and cover with a lid, cook for 6 minutes. Remove it from the microwave and stir, put it back in for about 2 more minutes then let it sit covered for 5-10 minutes. Once cool, add some chopped kale (the leafy type you pout in salads, not the courser, garnish kind) and mix in some corn (canned is easiest). Top with some sliced avocado. Add a light salad dressing or simply some lemon juice. Can be eaten warm or cold.
5. Noodle & Vegetable Stir-fry
You can easily fit in your daily servings of veggies and only spend about two minutes cooking them! Any vegetable works, my personal favorite would be steamed carrots or some broccoli and cauliflower. You can add some coconut oil into the bag to steam with them to add some healthy fats and some yummy flavor! Save some money and buy fresh veggies so you can have the option of steamed or raw!
To make 1 cup of steamed vegetables you need: 1 cup of veggies of your choice, a plastic bag, and seasonings of choice. Place the veggies and seasonings in the bag, zip it ¾ of the way closed. Then, just pop that into the microwave! It takes about two minutes for me, but time will depend on the microwave. Make sure to leave the bag in the microwave for at least a minute because it will be HOT!! Use your Ramen packets and heat up the soup as you would, just without the spice packets. Pour some soy sauce on top, and you have yourself a delicious and easy stir fry.
6. Salted Popcorn
Now, having popcorn kernels in your dorm room may not be as practical as having cereal or something way more simple. But, popcorn kernels supply you with popcorn, and you can easily make it all the time! Priorities, am I right? Popcorn is also one of my favorite foods, so I will definitely have kernels in my room. And when you have popcorn, you can be a pro late-night Netflix binger.
To make 5 cups of popcorn (a serving is 3 cups, but who’s counting) you will need: ¼ cup of popcorn kernels, seasonings, and a paper lunch bag. Put popcorn in the bag, fold the top of the bag down three times. Microwave the bag on HIGH for 4 minutes, but standby because all microwaves are different and it could take as little as 2 minutes. Pour popcorn into a bowl and season. As long as the bag doesn’t have holes, YOU CAN REUSE IT!!
7. Banana Chocolate Chip Rice “Pudding”
Bear with me, but dessert rice will change your life. Honestly, this is the easiest and yummiest rice you will ever eat! It’s not just for dessert, you can also eat it for breakfast and dinner! You can customize the toppings, but stay consistent with the fruit. Always, always, always add in a banana because that is what makes it pudding-y. Also, if you want to make it super decadent, add in some Enjoy Life chocolate chips. They’re free of the top 8 allergens and full of antioxidants you can indulge without feeling guilty!
To make 2 servings of rice you will need: 1 cup of rice, 2 cups of water, 1 banana, peanut butter, cinnamon, and chocolate chips. Add the water to the rice and lightly cover, pop it into the microwave for about 5 minutes. The time will depend on your type of rice. If it is the microwave rice, follow instructions on the box! After the rice is cooked, mash up a banana in a bowl and mix it in. Now, add in the cinnamon and peanut butter. Make sure it is thoroughly mixed before you sprinkle on the chocolate chips!
What are some other healthy recipes for the microwave? Comment below and share this article with friends!
Featured image source: thepioneerwoman.com, huffingtonpost.com
Delaney Huesgen is a Class of 2020 Fashion Merchandising student at Kent State Univeristy. Originally from Seattle, Washington, she is looking forward to her new adventure in Ohio. She hopes to move to New York and work at a magazine in an editorial position to continue her love of both writing and fashion.