When dining hall days are done: Quick, easy recipes to cook on your own

Without mom and dad’s cooking or the comfort of the dining halls, getting fed every day can be a stressful thing to tackle. To relieve some anxiety, here are some quick and easy recipes from a few of my favorite food bloggers.

Individual Mac and Cheese


3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

Cornmeal, for dusting

4 ounces cavatappi pasta

2 tablespoons flour

1 cup milk

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

Salt, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup, plus 2 tablespoons Gruyere cheese, freshly grated

1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated

2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano, freshly grated


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 12-ounce dish with 1 tablespoon of butter. Pour cornmeal on the dish and put the dish on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Set dish to the side.

2. Add water and salt to a medium-sized saucepan and boil. Add the pasta to the pan and cook for 5-7 minutes (the pasta will finish cooking in the oven, so it is important to not overcook the pasta when boiling). Drain pasta and set aside.

3. On medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the saucepan. Add flour to the pan and whisk until golden brown. Pour in milk and stir until it is a creamy texture.

4. Season the pan with salt and pepper, and stir in mustard.

5. Add 1/2 cup Gruyere cheese and all the cheddar and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Stir until texture thickens and all the cheese has melted.

6. Add noodles to saucepan and mix the noodles and the cheese.

7. Put the noodles and sauce in the buttered pan and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of Gruyere cheese to the noodles. Season as desired and bake for 25-35 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of Karen Covey of Gourmet Recipes for One

Personal Gourmet Pizza


Naan or pita bread

Your choice of veggies (the online recipe includes tomatoes, mushrooms, olives and onion)

Asiago and Parmesan cheese, grated

Pre-cooked chicken or other meats (optional)

Barbecue sauce (optional)

Olive oil

Italian seasoning


1. Evenly distribute olive oil on bread.

2. Add all and any additional desired toppings.

3. Add cheese

4. Add Italian seasoning, if desired.

5. Those who want more flavor can add barbecue sauce.

6. Bake in oven (or toaster oven) for 10 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of StudentRecipes.com

Red Beet and Goat Cheese Salad


4-5 whole small beets, canned, roughly chopped

2 cups of lettuce spring mix

1/2 cup chopped raw walnuts

2 ounces crumbled goat cheese


1. Wash lettuce spring mix and dry. Put on dinner plate as the salad base.

2. Add beets, chopped walnuts and crumbled goat cheese to the salad.

3. Spread a balsamic-based dressing, or another desired dressing, over the lettuce.

Courtesy of Ashley Lojko of Cooking For One

Abby can be reached at [email protected]