Ever craved a homemade meal but realized you’re short on both time and kitchen supplies? Tired of living off TV dinners from Weshop and baked goods from Pi Café? These delightful, three-ingredient recipes are the perfect solution to the college lifestyle. They’re quick, delicious, and practically fail-proof, even in a dorm environment. (Note: all recipes require only three main ingredients. Be aware that essentials like salt and pepper may be additionally necessary.)
Using the menu below, you can plan an entire day’s worth of meals without having to stress over lack of exotic spices or basic culinary skills. Now that the weather has finally caught up with the season, you can combine any of these dishes for a gourmet Spring picnic on Foss with friends!
Biscuits OR chocolate croissants
Veggie burger OR pretzel-coated honey mustard chicken tenders
Macaroni and cheese
Peanut butter cups
Classic Southern Biscuits
(Adapted from Christy Jordan’s SouthernPlate.com)
2 cups White Lily Self Rising Flour*
1/4 cup shortening
2/3 – 3/4 cups milk
1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F and lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
2. Place flour into mixing bowl and cut in shortening until well incorporated. Stir in just enough milk until dough leaves the sides of the bowl.
3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Gently knead two or three times. Roll dough out to 1/2 inch thickness and cut with a biscuit cutter or small glass that has been dipped in flour. Place biscuits onto prepared baking sheet.
4. Bake 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.
*If using all-purpose flour, combine two cups of flour, one tablespoon baking powder, and one teaspoon of salt before cutting in shortening. Follow the rest of the directions as written.
Sinfully Easy Chocolate Croissants
(Adapted from InspiredTaste.net)
Yields 16 croissants
1 tbsp. water
1/2 of a 17.3 ounce package Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed
2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or small chocolate chunks
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick baking mat.
2. Beat the egg and water in a small bowl with a fork or whisk then set aside.
3. Lightly flour your work surface. Unfold the pastry sheet then lightly dust top with flour. Use a rolling pin to roll the sheet into a 16-inch square.
4. Cut pastry square in half then cut each half into four rectangles (making eight, 8-inch by 4-inch rectangles). Then cut each rectangle diagonally into two triangles (making 16 triangles).
5. Place about two teaspoons chocolate chips down the center of each triangle.
6. Starting at the wider end, roll each triangle up. Place each croissant seam-side down so that the tip of the triangle is tucked under the rolled croissant. Then bend in the edges, creating a crescent shape.
7. Lightly brush tops of croissants with egg wash.
8. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers
(Adapted from LunchBoxBunch.com)
2 cans cannellini white beans, drained
1 large sweet potato
2 tbsp. tahini
2 tsp. maple or agave syrup
1 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning or Cajun seasoning
1/4 cup wheat flour
Salt to taste (if needed)
1 box of Panko breadcrumbs
1 tbsp. safflower oil
1. Bake sweet potato. Peel and place in large mixing bowl.
2. Add drained beans to mixing bowl. Mash beans and potato together.
3. Mash in seasoning and wheat flour.
4. The mixture will be quite soft, but you should be able to form a patty. Add more flour or a scoop of breadcrumbs to thicken the mixture if needed.
5. Heat 1 tbsp. safflower oil in a pan over high heat.
6. Form a patty from mixture and coat it thickly in Panko crumbs. Drop the patty into the pan.
7. Cook until browned on both sides.
8. Transfer cooked patty to paper towel. Cool for a few minutes.
9. Serve on toasted bun with lots of toppings, such as avocado.
Pretzel-coated Honey Mustard Chicken Tenders
(Adapted from CookingwithCakes.com)
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast tenderloins
1 1/3 cups honey mustard pretzels
1/2 cup “lite” honey mustard dressing
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. coarse black peppercorn
PAM cooking spray
1. Lay out chicken tenders on cutting board and lightly season with salt and pepper.
2. Transfer to large bowl, then pour over with honey mustard dressing. Cover and allow to marinate in refrigerator for at least one hour.
3. Grease baking sheet with cooking spray.
4. Pulse pretzels in food processor or blender until they resemble breadcrumbs. Spread out pretzel crumbs onto large plate, then set aside.
5. Shake excess dressing off each chicken tender, then coat in pretzel crumbs before placing on greased baking tray.
6. Bake at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes, then turn over the tenders. Continue baking for 10 minutes and broil for 2-3 minutes more until crispy.
7. Immediately plate and serve, pairing with extra honey mustard dressing if desired.
(adapted from mommysavers.com)
Egg roll wrappers
Mozzarella sticks (string cheese)
Oil for frying
1. Place a mozzarella stick in the corner of one egg roll wrapper. Begin rolling from the bottom.
2. Fold the corners of the egg roll wrapper in and continue rolling the wrapper (if desired, you can sprinkle a little Italian seasoning on the cheese at this point).
3. Create an egg wash with one beaten egg and a couple tablespoons water. Brush each mozzarella stick with the egg wash.
4. Fry in vegetable oil until golden brown and serve with marinara sauce.
(adapted from kirbiecravings.com)
1 1/4 cup Nutella
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1. Grease a 9 x 9 baking pan and preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Mix all ingredients into a large bowl with a large wooden spoon until batter is smooth. Pour into baking pan and smooth top with spatula.
3. Bake for about 15 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean. (Careful not to bake too long, otherwise brownies will dry out.)
Let brownies cool and set before cutting and serving.
(Adapted from TheKitchn.com)
Yields 8 large bars or 16 small squares
1 cup nuts
1 cup dried fruit
1 cup (12-15 whole) dates, pitted
1. Combine the nuts, dried fruit, and dates in a food processor. Pulse a few times to break them up. Separate the dates if they start to clump together.
2. Process continuously for 30 seconds. By this point, the ingredients should all have broken down into crumb-sized pieces. Scrape the edges of the bowl and beneath the blade to make sure nothing is sticking.
3. Process continuously until a ball is formed, 1-2 minutes. Continue processing for another 1-2 minutes, until the ingredients clump together and gather into a ball.
4. Lay a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper on your work surface and dump the power bar dough on top. Press the dough with your hands until it forms a thick square, roughly 8 x 8 inches in size.
5. Wrap and chill for at least an hour or overnight.
6. Unwrap the chilled bar dough and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 8 large bars or 16 small squares, as desired. Wrap each bar in plastic wrap or wax paper.
7. Store the bars in the fridge for several weeks or in the freezer for up to three months. (The bars can be eaten straight from the fridge or freezer and will be firm, but chewy. Room-temperature bars are perfectly fine to eat and can be kept in a lunch bag or backpack all day, but will be softer and more paste-like.)
Stovetop Mac and Cheese
(Adapted from SheMakesAndBakes.com)
2 cups milk
2 cups shells
1 cup white cheddar cheese
Salt to taste
1. In a medium saucepan, bring the milk and pasta to a simmer over medium heat.
2. Cook for about 20 minutes, stirring often and making sure that the milk doesn’t boil.
3. Once the pasta is al dente, remove from heat and add the cheese.
4. Stir until cheese is melted. Add extra milk to make sauce creamier if desired.
5. Add salt to taste.
Peanut Butter Cups
(Adapted from leevesandberries.com)
Yields 15-20 bite-sized cups
1/2 cup of semi sweet chocolate chips
Approx. 1/4 cup creamy natural peanut butter or almond butter
1. Melt your chocolate until smooth. (Use a double-boiler or, if available, the “melt” setting on a microwave.)
2. Lay out cupcake liners in mini-muffin pan. Using a spoon, put a layer of chocolate in the bottom of each cup.
3. Working with your hands, form a ball of peanut butter about the size of a small grape and place one in the middle of each cup. (Once you put on the top layer of chocolate, it will help smooth and flatten out the ball of peanut butter.)
4. Spoon a layer of chocolate on top of the peanut butter, doing your best to cover all it completely with a layer of chocolate.
5. Sprinkle with sea salt.
6. Allow peanut butter cups to set in the freezer for 15-30 minutes before serving. Keep chilled.