When I was a freshman, I had a microwave and a mini fridge in my room. I went to the dining center (DC for short) almost every day for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Sometimes, this made me sad. I also had no idea how many meals I could’ve made in the microwave on days that I:

A) Was too tired to leave my room.

B) Did not want to leave my room because it was freezing outside.

C) Was tired of the DC.

I was naive then. If only I had known the power of my microwave/fridge combination. Also, microwave-safe dishes and bowls are indispensable items that you should invest in because very often even if you don’t have your own microwave, there is one in your dorm somewhere. So let’s begin.


Pancake Mugcake


Photo by Natsuko Mazany

This recipe uses smashed banana but why not experiment with chocolate chips or blueberries in the batter?



Photo by Caty Schnack

Eggs rock because you can fry your eggs, scramble your eggs, and poach your eggs all in the microwave. In the future, you most likely will be able to press a button on your microwave and an entire breakfast sandwich will appear inside.

Banana French Toast


Photo by Kelda Baljon

Bananas optional, but encouraged. Recipe here.



Photo by Becky Hughes

You can use your classic Quaker Oats Instant Oatmeal or you can try this recipe with chia and flaxseed for when you want to feel extra healthy.

Mug Muffin


Photo by Lauren Gong

Muffins are so versatile. Microwaves don’t discriminate so maybe on Monday try Apple Cinnamon and on Friday try Chocolate Peanut Butter.


Minestrone Soup


Photo by Theo Lee

Who knew you could make homemade soup in the microwave?



Photo by Devon Carlson

Sure, all you have to make in the microwave is the bacon. But what is a BLT without bacon? No one wants an LT. My preferred method is plate, paper towel, bacon, paper towel for 5-7 minutes in the microwave depending on how crisp you like it.



Photo by Alex Furuya

This is for when you want to make a sandwich, only fancier with microwaved Béchamel sauce. Now you know how to make an egg in the microwave so add an egg to make it a croque-madame.

Chicken Curry


Photo by Bonnie Wu

Eat this on its own or buy tiny microwave rice bowls and serve over rice if you’re going big.

Pizza Bagel


Photo by Zoe Schneider

The possibilities are (mostly) endless on this one.

Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus with Goat Cheese & Shrimp


Photo by Michelle Loret de Mola

Simply incredible. You could really eat this for lunch or dinner. If you want, add an egg to really fill it out for dinner.

Hot & Spicy Chili Ramen


Photo by Caitlin Wolper

Ramen is a college staple. But ditch your plain ramen for this recipe or any of these recipes.


Mac & Cheese


Photo by Alex Weiner

Great for when you feel like you shouldn’t eat Easy Mac for the fourth night in a row.

Salmon Dinner


Photo by Grégoire Durand

Yes, you can make microwave fish. It might seem wrong but it’s actually so right. Just put your fish in a microwave-safe dish and cover it on high for 3.5 to 4 minutes. Maybe prepare it with this recipe, and throw it in there.

Spaghetti Squash


Photo by Paige Marie Rodgers

I might be able to eat spaghetti squash every night for dinner if I were stuck in a room with nothing but spaghetti squash for a week. The fact that you can make it in the microwave is game changing because the oven is usually a painful 40-50 minute debacle.

Chicken Fajitas


Photo courtesy of momspotted.com

This blew my mind a little because you could probably make this for your friend and they would be so confused how you managed to make this in a dorm.

Stuffed Baked Potato


Photo by Maria Glander

The fun part is you can use a regular potato or a sweet potato, the world is your oyster. Just poke the potato with a fork, put it in the microwave for 10 minutes. It should be soft when you take it out but please don’t burn yourself. Then add some cheese, sour cream, bacon bits etc.



Photo by Smita Jain

You can eat this as a meal on its own or put it next to your chicken or salmon dish. You should probably watch the movie also.


Chocolate Mug Cake


Photo by Patrick Domingo

I couldn’t write this without including the chocolate mug cake.

Nutella Mug Cake


Photo by Meredith Marcus

Like the more exciting cousin of the chocolate cake.

Chocolate Chip Cookie in a Cup


Photo by Christine Chang

Talk about perfect portion control. We’ve all made 15 cookies intending to only eat two, or if we’re being honest with ourselves, four, and then all of a sudden the plate is empty. An empty mug is more emotionally acceptable.

Pumpkin Spice Donuts


Photo by Caitlin Shoemaker

It’s an exciting day when donuts can be made in a dorm. Chocolate glaze optional (but not really optional).

S’mores Mug Cake


Photo by Lila Thulin

You can always make simple s’mores in the microwave. When you’re feeling more adventurous but still only have a microwave, try this recipe.

Cinnamon Baked Apples


Photo by Ben Rosenstock

For when you’re looking for a “healthier” dessert but can only compromise so much.

PB&J Banana Bread


Photo by Alvin Zhou

I don’t have a lot of words for this one because I just found it and I can’t think of many things I love more than banana bread and peanut butter.

Congratulations, you can now make an entire week’s worth of breakfast, lunch, dinner and desserts. Feel free to mix and match all and any combinations above.