7 Cooking Frugal Tips for College Students

If you are eating on a tight budget, there are a few things that you can focus on  without sacrificing your health. Whether it is using up leftovers to smart pantry stocking –Here are frugal tips for college

7 Eating Frugally Ideas for College Students

Check your Dorm kitchen: 

Many universities are today coming up apartment-style living quarters that are well equipped with modern cooking facilities. While such quarters have well-equipped built-in kitchens, college student’s resources are usually limited. It’s totally different when you cook in your mom’s kitchen than on your own.

Besides lacking a well-stocked pantry, you’ll be required to follow campus rules and adjust to limited cooking equipment. Microwaves might be allowed in your college kitchen, but electric pots, hot plates and toaster ovens might be prohibited. It’s recommended that you check with your college before purchasing.

Equipment Essentials: 

Always stock up the basics: a plate, silverware, bowls, and a can opener. If you can access a kitchen, also get a good knife –a steak knife or even a chef’s knife –and a big pot. If you lack bowls for mixing, you can use a large pot to mix the ingredients.

Keep Cooking Basics on Hand: 

Keep some of your favorite foods on hand to avoid late night fast food visits. Canned products are great –especially canned beans –as they always works well in microwaves. Supplement the canned goods with rice and you’ve got a good meal. Always stock your pantry with salt and pepper, and other seasonings, such as Cajun mix, to keep your meals interesting.

Also remember to always stock the basic starches, such as pastas, rice and even potatoes as they keep for longer time. You can always make something with these starches plus a few fresh and canned veggies. It’s good to learn to substitute especially if carrying or getting supplies is a problem. For example, you can purchase bouillon cubes instead of canned stock.

Shop smartly to save: 

Your budget will be tapped out after paying for tuition and purchasing textbooks. While fast foods might seem cheaper and time saving, it’s more economical and even healthier to prepare your own meals. Always buy in bulk the items that are on sale especially if it’s something you love eating regularly. A great cost-cutting tip: even when cooking for yourself, it doesn’t mean that you reduce a recipe for one serving. Make the full recipe and have the leftovers for lunch the following day or even freeze it for a future dinner.

Take advantage of coupons alongside sales if possible to save as much money as you can. You may find generic or store bran items best for you, so do some math before choosing.

Avoid the Freshman Fifteen: 

While it might seem easy to eat pizza for every meal and very tempting to chow down on fries and ice cream, it doesn’t mean you should. You should get some variety in your daily diet. Ensure your diet includes all the essential nutrients: eat your vegetables and some fruits to stay healthy.

Avoid wasting food: 

Make use of all your leftovers. You can use leftovers for lunches, for the next dinner, or to create another recipe. For instance, use leftover meat and veggies with a few new ingredients to make an excellent casserole or soup. If you can’t eat something you prepared right away, freeze it for later use.

Draw a budget: 

Make a reasonable budget for food, and always try to stay within the set budget. Set aside a few coins on a weekly basis for stocking your pantry as well.

Frugal Living Resources

Leftover recipes
Frugal Grocery Shopping Tips
Tips on Frugal Living
Low Cost Recipes

Frugal Family Fun series:

Part 1 -Pizza Time
Part 2 -Breakfast Chefs
Part 3- Bouncy Balls
Part 4- Cookie Marathon
Part 5- Smoothies