7-Day College Student Meal Plan

Cooking on your own for the first time can be a little daunting. We're here to help with a full week's worth of recipes. Each dish requires fewer than eight ingredients and takes 10 minutes (or less!) to prep. Plus, you won't be stuck with tons of leftovers. Each recipe feeds one to two, or can be frozen for later use.

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Day 1 Breakfast: Egg Burritos

Zap one of these frozen burritos in the microwave and you'll stave off hunger all morning. This recipe is my family’s favorite combo, but I sometimes use breakfast sausage instead of bacon. —Audra Niederman, Aberdeen, South Dakota
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Day 1 Lunch: Spicy Sausage Soup with Tortellini

This soup is such a family treasure, both my daughters asked for the recipe when they moved out on their own. I cook the tortellini separately, but you can let it plump up in the soup broth, too. —Cynthia Krakowiak, Langhorne, Pennsylvania
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Day 1 Snack: Oven Parmesan Chips

My husband and I avoid fried foods, but potatoes are part of our menu almost every day. These delectable sliced potatoes get nice and crispy and give our meals a likable lift. —Mary Lou Kelly, Scottdale, Pennsylvania

If these are helpful, this guide on how to college meal prep on a budget might come in handy, too.

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Day 1 Dinner: Mango Salsa Chicken with Veggie Hash

This hash has the fresh flavors of spring. Using precooked grilled chicken strips makes the meal come together quickly. And the veggies make the dish so pretty! —Lori Mclain, Denton, Texas
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Day 2 Breakfast: Peanut Butter Oatmeal

My son and I eat this peanut butter oatmeal recipe every day for breakfast. It's a hearty, healthy way to jump start our morning. — Elisabeth Reitenbach, Terryville, Connecticut
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Day 2 Lunch: Tomato & Avocado Sandwiches

I'm a vegetarian, and this is a tasty, quick and healthy lunch I could eat for every meal. At my house, we call these sandwiches HATS: hummus, avocado, tomato and shallots. These are ingredients I almost always have on hand. —Sarah Jaraha, Moorestown, New Jersey
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Day 2 Snack: Blueberry Cream Pops

Blueberry-and-cream pops are such a fun after-school snack. Make them in the morning so the pops are ready to go when the kids come in the door. —Cindy Reams, Philipsburg, Pennsylvania
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Day 2 Dinner: Microwaved Parmesan Chicken

This quick way to prepare chicken has been a family staple ever since a friend gave me the recipe. It's too good not to share. — Michael Herman, Carney, Michigan
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Day 3 Breakfast: Microwave Egg Sandwich

If you're looking for a grab-and-go breakfast for busy days, this high-protein sandwich is low in fat and keeps me full all morning. Plus, it's only about 200 calories! —Brenda Otto, Reedsburg, Wisconsin
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Day 3 Lunch: Greek Brown and Wild Rice Bowls

This fresh rice dish tastes like the Mediterranean in a bowl! It is short on ingredients but packs in so much flavor. For a hand-held version, leave out the rice and tuck the rest of the ingredients in a pita pocket. —Darla Andrews, Boerne, Texas
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Day 3 Snack: Striped Chocolate Popcorn

For a bake sale last year, I wanted to try something different. I’d seen chocolate popcorn in a candy shop and thought I’d try making it. This recipe was a great success. —Mary Schmittinger, Colgate, Wisconsin
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Day 3 Dinner: Mediterranean Turkey Skillet

I've always heard that it’s important to eat a rainbow of colors to get all of the nutrients we need. Thanks to my garden-grown veggies, this dish certainly fits the bill. —Nicole Ehlert, Burlington, Wisconsin
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Day 4 Breakfast: Chocolate Cinnamon Toast

You might want to sit down for this one. Cinnamon bread gets topped with chocolate and fresh berries, then toasted in a skillet. That's real love. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Day 4 Lunch: Waffle Sandwich

Breakfast for lunch or dinner? Why not, when the recipe's this easy! I like to serve it with some crisp, juicy sweet apples. Sometimes I add raisins and nuts to the filling of the waffle sandwich for sweetness and crunch. —Michele McHenry, Bellingham, Washington
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Day 4 Snack: Mango Smoothies

Treat yourself to this yummy blend of mango, pineapple, banana and honey. The yogurt makes it rich and creamy, but a serving has only 2 grams of fat! —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Day 4 Dinner: BLT Skillet

This quick weeknight meal reminds me of a BLT, with its chunks of bacon and tomato. The whole wheat linguine gives the skillet dish extra flavor and texture. —Edrie O'Brien, Denver, Colorado
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Day 5 Breakfast: Yankee Rancheros

After my in-laws began affectionately referring to me as a Yankee, I decided I had to learn to make some Mexican dishes. These are super easy and make my Tex-Mex-loving family happy—even if they do come from a Northerner!. —Darla Andrews, Boerne, Texas
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Day 5 Lunch: Grilled Hummus Turkey Sandwich

I created this toasted sandwich last summer using homemade hummus and veggies from our garden. We really can't get enough! —Gunjan Gilbert, Franklin, Maine
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Day 5 Snack: Snack Crackers

Our 13-year-old daughter, Dana, loves to make this crunchy and flavorful snack for us. Her four older brothers finish off a batch in no time. —Sue Manel, Milladore, Wisconsin
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Day 5 Dinner: Curried Coconut Chicken for Two

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Day 6 Breakfast: Lance’s Own French Toast

When my young son, Lance, helps me make this French toast, he knows in what order to add the ingredients and even how much to measure out. This dish is perfect for the whole family! —Janna Steele, Magee, Mississippi
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Day 6 Lunch: Skillet Ham & Rice

Ham, rice and mushrooms make a tasty combination in this homey stovetop dish. It goes from start to finish in just 25 minutes. —Susan Zivec, Regina, Saskatchewan
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Day 6 Snack: Dill Vegetable Dip

A friend gave me this zesty dip recipe many years ago, and now I serve it at our annual holiday open house. To make it mobile, spoon a serving of the dip in the bottom of a small cup, then garnish with fresh veggies. —Karen Gardiner, Eutaw, Alabama
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Day 6 Dinner: Roasted Butternut Linguine for Two

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Day 7 Breakfast: Biscuits + Sausage Gravy

This biscuits and sausage gravy is an old southern recipe that I've adapted. Homemade sausage gravy is a classic, hearty breakfast that takes you on a trip to the South every time it's served. —Sue Baker, Jonesboro, Arkansas
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Day 7 Lunch: Zippy Egg Salad

Egg salad is a refreshing, tasty change from lunchmeat or peanut butter sandwiches. The touch of mustard and lemon juice gives it extra zip. —Annemarie Pietila, Farmington Hills, Michigan
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Day 7 Snack: Granola Trail Mix

My family has always enjoyed this crunchy four-ingredient snack. When we go camping, each person includes one additional ingredient like mini marshmallows, corn chips or cookie pieces. The taste is never the same, and we're often surprised by the combinations. —Shelley Riddlespurger, Amarillo, Texas
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Day 7 Dinner: Jiffy Ground Pork Skillet

Some people call it dinner hour, but many of us call it rush hour. Slow down the pace with this so-simple mouthwatering ground pork meal. The only thing you'll have left over is time to share with your family at the table. —Brigitte Schaller, Flemington, Missouri

Katie Bandurski
As Senior Shopping Editor, Katie connects Taste of Home readers with the best gifts, deals and home products on the market. An avid foodie and a holiday enthusiast, Katie is an expert at cultivating meaningful moments. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and watching Christmas movies.