Top student recipes and tips

Is your son or daughter off to college or university and self-catering for the first time? Equip them with Mumsnetters' top tips and recipes for eating well on the cheap.

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Chop chop

"Obtain the biggest chopping board you can and keep it in your room, so that when you want to cook something you can ensure one section of the skanky student kitchen is clean enough to prepare food on." Silverapples

Take turns

"Take turns to cook for your flat. It's cheaper to cook a main meal for 5-6 people once a week than to cook for yourself every day. And it's good to all sit together and chat." Elizaco

Share basics

"Figure out which basics all your flatmates eat/use ie bread, milk, tea bags, loo roll and each put £5/£10 into a kitty once a week/month as appropriate to cover these to share. It's generally cheaper to buy larger packs or multipacks, so you should save money." Petalsandstars

Get toasty

"If you're going out drinking, buy a value loaf of sliced bread and toast it when you get in rather than buying kebabs etc. Save your overdraft for when you really need it." MisForMumNotMaid

Buy from markets

"Go to a local market for veg and fruit. Only buy what you need. Go to a large supermarket just before it closes - a Saturday is probably best - and get all the stuff going out of date soon at bargain prices. Freeze it. You will save loads." Ruby6918

Eat fruit

"Don't forget to eat fruit: apples, grapes, easy-peel satsumas etc. Wards off freshers' flu." Bucylen


Simple curry sauce 

by Hatsybatsy

Fry 2 onions and 2 cloves of garlic until soft and golden. 
Add 1-3 tbsp curry powder and 1 tbsp plain flour. 
Fry for a further minute. 
Add 1 pint chicken or veggie stock, stir until thickened. 
Simmer for 10 minutes. 
For chicken curry: add cooked chicken before you simmer. 
For veggie curry: add mushrooms/peppers/cauliflower etc to softerned onions. 
For lentil or chickpea curry: cook dried pulses in stock separately and add in place of stock, topping up where necessary.

Cheapo cheat's pizza 

by RemuslupinsbiggestGroupie

Get basic range pitta bread, spread with red or green pesto.
Top with mozzarella, bits of tomato, onion, whatever you like (great for using up leftovers). 
Cook in the oven until cheese has melted. 
Eat (with salad if available).

Bacon and beans mash-up 

by Drcoconut

Cook a couple of potatoes and mash. 
Meanwhile, fry chopped bacon, onion and mushrooms (optional). 
Mix into the mash, top with grated cheese and brown under grill. 
Serve with beans.

Easy chocolatey cookies 

by Lookoveryourshouldernow

Ingredients: 1 cup Nutella, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup self-raising flour, 1 egg. 
Mix everything thoroughly. 
Make a large dough ball, divide it into individual 2.5 cm/1in round balls. 
Place on baking sheet and flatten slightly, making sure each cookie has room to spread. 
Cook in a pre-heated oven, 175°C for approx 8-10 mins. 
Eat before your room mates get them.

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Last updated: over 3 years ago