Don’t get me wrong, the food in the Ryerson cafeterias could be a lot worse—we are fortunate to have options that fit almost every person’s dietary needs. Ryerson is a very progressive school in terms of options, allergies and the environment. But it is still a cafeteria, and a lot of times I leave the cafeteria feeling just as hungry, deprived, and unsatisfied as when I walked in. That being said, I created a list of hacks and must-haves to keep in your dorm room fridge full so that you don't have to rely on the caf. Here are the best foods to keep in your Ryerson dorm room mini-fridge.

1. Salad Dressing

coffee, wine
Bernard Wen

There is no shortage of plant-based protein at the salad bar– quinoa, chickpeas, beans and tofu are always available. It’s safe to say that the combination of beans, seeds, dried fruit and fresh vegetables make for the perfect cafeteria salad. The only thing lacking in variety/taste is the salad dressing. Keeping a bottle of your fav dressing in your mini fridge and bringing it down at meals or putting serving size amounts in mini containers in the perfect way to transform a lame salad into a filling, delicious meal. 

2. Berries and Grapes

sweet, berry, raspberry
Hannah Linn

Containers of melon and pineapple and fresh apples, bananas and oranges are (almost) always available for purchase in the cafeterias however grapes, berries and other more exotic fruits are not available on campus. Going to grocery stores and stocking up on fresh berries/grapes is always the key. Its easy and fun to snack on, and makes for the perfect show-watching snack or breakfast accompaniment. *Invest in cheap baggies or containers to bring your fruit to class.

3. Hummus and Salsa

chili, soup
Becca Berland

Start storing corn chips or your favourite crackers in your dorm room and you’ve just given yourself a new, easy lunch or afternoon snack. Hummus is a great source of protein—and given that the cafeterias close for lunch around 2:30 pm, having filling foods in your room will become a lifesaver. Salsa spices up any boring old chip or cracker and is fun to share, for movie nights or late-night snacks.

4. Milk

Zoe Zaiss

I usually go for unsweetened vanilla almond milk, but that’s just me. I use milk for quick granola breakfasts, snacks and coffee and to pair with any sweet or chocolate-y snack. Milk is a cheap mini-fridge essential. Take advantage of this one and buy some instant coffee for your dorm room “pantry”. Making coffee in your room saves time in the morning and saves you money.

5. Almond Butter

chocolate, butter, peanut, peanut butter
Katherine Carroll

Not only does keeping nut butter cool prolong its freshness, but keeping it easily accessible in your mini-fridge makes it the perfect snack. Eat it out of the jar, spread on bread, or dip your apples into it. Nut butter is a protein-rich, deliciously cheap must-have.