Are you a diehard pasta lover? Are you a struggling cook with limited space and materials? Are you hungry? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then oh boy do I have an article for you.

As a self-proclaimed pasta connoisseur, I have eaten dozens, likely even hundreds of pasta dishes over my past two decades, and have cooked maybe ten. But, dear reader, I’ve carefully parsed those ten recipes to a select four that I believe even a challenged cook such as myself can successfully execute in a college dorm. And, as an added bonus, they’re all vegetarian.

Pesto Orzo

Sydney Pearson

Starting with the easiest dish I know, orzo with pesto sauce is about as simple as it gets for the first-time cook. All you need is a container of pesto sauce and (surprise, surprise) orzo. Simply cook your orzo (or, frankly, any other pasta), drain the water, and mix in some pesto. This easy pasta dish is filling, healthy, and very easy to eat directly out of the pot, making it one of my new late-night snack staples.

Pro tip: Trader Joe’s Vegan Kale, Cashew & Basil Pesto is incredible and tastes somewhat lighter than your standard pesto.

One-Pot Tomato Orzo

Sydney Pearson

The inspiration behind the pesto orzo, this recipe from Instagram is slightly more intensive, but just as delicious. The sauce is effectively just tomatoes and heavy whipping cream (or coconut cream if you want to make it vegan), and unlike some recipes, it truly only takes one pot. This dish is savory, rich, and will leave your parents believing you know how to cook Michelin-quality meals when in reality you just tossed a bunch of ingredients into a pot.

Pro tip: While this is a recipe that you can more or less eyeball, go light on the heavy cream so that you don't drown out the taste of the tomatoes.

Baked Feta Pasta

Sydney Pearson

Known as the pasta that broke the internet, if you haven’t heard of this one, you’ve either been living under a rock or did not have TikTok approximately 2 years ago. This is the first pasta dish I ever made by myself, and boy is it good. Only involving a few simple ingredients (that should be easy to find if there isn't a national feta shortage like the one I faced) the only challenging aspect of this recipe may be sourcing an oven-safe container. While the cooking time can look daunting, most of the quoted time is just how long the sauce spends in the oven, so if you have a test to cram for, you can do that while everything’s cooking.

Pro tip: While the recipe calls for various seasonings, all you need is feta, pasta, tomatoes, olive oil, and basil. The ingredients that you don't completely use up are all great to have on hand for other recipes as well.

(Almost) No-Cook Brie and Tomato Pasta

Sydney Pearson

My favorite of the four, this dish is a quicker, simpler version of the baked feta pasta, where the only thing that needs to be cooked is the pasta itself. All you have to do is chop up tomatoes, brie, and basil and mix them with olive oil in a bowl while your pasta is cooking. Once the pasta is done, toss it in with the tomato and cheese mixture. The hot pasta will melt the brie and soften the tomatoes, making this an incredibly easy, time-efficient dish (I promise - I’ve made it about three times in the past two weeks).

Pro tip: Angel hair nests go well with this and cook quickly, even in a small pot.

And there you have it folks! I hope that this article has provided you with some easy pasta inspiration. And remember: if I can make it, so can you.