college student needing affordable and easy recipes

4d6vp278s6 Posts: 5 Member
heya!! if anyone has any reasonably affordable and quicker or easier recipes to share, it would be greatly appreciated! Don't worry about how many servings it makes as I will often make a family-sized meal and portion it out for multiple meals in a week. Thank you kindly!


  • nossmf
    nossmf Posts: 7,550 Member
    1 box mac-n-cheese
    1 can tuna or chicken, drained
    1 can peas, drained
    1 can diced tomatoes, NOT drained

    Prepare the mac as directed on the package. Add other ingredients, stir, serve. Voila, all food groups covered, multiple meal servings (stores/reheats very nicely), under $10.
  • LenGray
    LenGray Posts: 794 Member
    Hi! Broke vegan college student here!

    I really like making mac n' cheese with frozen mixed veg/greens and either bbq tempeh or tofu. I use this recipe to make it really cheap.

    I'm also a fan of soups because they make a lot and are cheap. I have a ton of go-to's that I pack along with a peanut butter sandwich, cornbread, or fruit.

    Black bean and lentil soup: recipe
    Vegan broccoli soup: recipe. I usually end up adding some cooked red lentils to this one to make it more filling/balanced
    Vegan Zucchini Soup: recipe. I make this a LOT in the summer.

    Another good option is to make bowls for lunch, which are pretty cheap if you use similar ingredients for several bowls. I'll prep some grains, proteins, and veggies ahead of time, then throw them together for the day. Some examples would be:

    Rice, tofu, frozen stir-fry veg, frozen edamame, teriyaki sauce-- teriyaki tofu bowl
    Quinoa, lentils, taco seasoning, bell peppers, onions, lettuce, and salsa-- taco salad
    Chickpea pasta, vegan ground beef, mushrooms, spinach, zucchini, pasta sauce-- spaghetti
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,853 Member
    I was a broke college student once upon a time. My staples were:
    • Whole chickens or cut up fryers or chicken legs and/or thighs
    • Beans (dried, not canned)
    • Rice
    • Pasta
    • Canned tuna
    • Eggs
    • Oats
    • Sandwich bread
    • Peanut butter
    • Frozen peas
    • Cabbage
    • Ground beef

    Can't really help with "recipes" as I didn't really use recipes...I just cooked stuff. Steamed some rice to have with beans and chicken...grill chicken...grill a burger, make a sandwich, scramble some eggs, etc
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 8,837 Member
    Despite high inflation I can easy cook dinner on 1.60 Euro per day, often less. The questions for you are: what kind of cooking and food storage options do you have? What is affordable where you are? Can you get basic vegetables at a good price? Here, onions, garlic, and usually 2-3 other types of vegs are cheap. Pasta or rice can be very cheap. Tinned beans and tomatoes are cheap. Tofu is cheap. A few different spices, a bottle of soy sauce and you could cook pretty much everything from pasta dishes to simple Asian or Indian dishes from scratch. And the good thing is: cooking times are minimal as well.
  • COGypsy
    COGypsy Posts: 1,069 Member
    Frozen vegetables are highly underrated. They’re cheap, the variety is endless, you never have to worry about whether it’s ripe or spoiled or squished, and you can add a handful to anything else you’re cooking. They require no peeling and washing and chopping and blanching and whatever else you have to do to get fresh produce to an edible state. I’d probably starve or die of scurvy if it weren’t for frozen vegetables.
  • perryc05
    perryc05 Posts: 193 Member
    Download the 'Feed the Family for Less' eBook:
  • NoodleAddict89
    NoodleAddict89 Posts: 12 Member
    Fav meal I eat atm:

    Whole grain bagel toasted and slathered in pizza sauce. Add slices of tomato on top and Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Heat in microwave for 20 sec to melt cheese. It's like a veggie pizza!
  • MOJayhawker
    MOJayhawker Posts: 8 Member
    edited July 10
    I was never a broke student, but I was a broke young mother once.
    My go-to item was a crock pot. It's indespensible for a busy mom. Make meals that include lots of fresh vegetables so you can halve the amount of meat you use. (Big money saver!)
    Another thing that works great is making stir frys. You can use little or no meat and put it all on rice, which is a cheap staple. There are so many variations to them too. I like a mexican stir fry which is basically fajitas on rice. Great and low calorie!
    I found this site is a big help if you are on a budget:
    This site has some good ideas for crock pot meals. If you don't have the storage space in your freezer, you can prepare them as you need them too.
    I hope this helps!