college food

snowbell55  asked:

Thanks so much! I really appreciate it (especially the College Student's Cookbook), but I'm not so much looking for recipes as I am the processes and what things do, ie, how to cut up a chicken into pieces, what paprika does, how to fry things, which knife to use when you want to do "x", the difference between sauteing and frying, etc. Not so much "what to put together if you want to make X" but "if you do this then this will happen because of that". Do you have any resources for that?

Whoops, sorry I didn’t understand. I don’t have any resources for that, so I threw one together for you! My boyfriend has been a line cook for about seven years now, and he’s taught me so much about food. There are lots of simple things you can do to make food taste better- but let’s start with the basics.

College Cooking 101

Materials

Here is a list of materials that I believe are absolutely necessary to creating a quality product. Feel free to substitute anything based on your own personal preferences.

Cooking supplies:

  • Non-stick frying pan (cast iron pans are much more difficult to clean)
  • Pot (I would recommend a small pot that you can use to cook for just yourself, and a larger pot for cooking portions or for company)
  • Lid for said pot
  • Rubber spatula (much better than wooden spoons)
  • Tongs
  • Sheet tray
  • Strainer
  • Scissors (kitchen scissors)
  • A cutting board (I recommend plastic because they’re easier to wash)
  • Cutting knife
  • Bread knife (both knives should be sharpened every six months at least, you can take them to your local kitchen supplies shop)

Spices:

  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Dried chives (or real chives if you can swing them. Throw them in your ramen, your tuna salad, sprinkle them on top of pasta, etc)
  • Thyme (dried or fresh… dried is 3x as potent, use to season soups or pastas)
  • Rosemary (dried or fresh, use to season meats and starches)
  • Cumin (use this spice to rub meat)
  • Cinnamon
  • Sugar
  • Garlic powder or onion powder (used for meat rubs and seasoning soups or sauces)
  • Paprika (I would recommend avoiding smoked paprika, it’s got a super aggressive flavor… use this in small amounts sprinkled over things like you would the chives)

Basic produce:

  • Parmesan cheese (for sprinkling over pastas, you can get it pre-grated)
  • Cheddar cheese (for making sandwiches and mac and cheese)
  • Tomatoes (whole, crushed, paste, whatever… just have some sort of tomato product in your pantry at all times)
  • Potatoes (you can’t buy them pre-cut because the oxidize and turn gray if not used immediately… you can still eat them, but they don’t look pretty)
  • Onions (you can get them pre-cut)
  • Garlic (use to make sauce or soup bases)
  • Romaine hearts (lettuce has a short shelf life, but romaine hearts literally last forever and are healthier than eating iceberg lettuce)
  • Protein of some sort (whatever you like- steak, chicken, tofu, etc)
  • Something salty (like pickles, black olives, anchovies, etc)
  • Your favorite veggies (I like carrots and squashes the best)
  • Pasta (whatever is cheapest or on sale at your store)
  • Bread (freeze half a loaf and leave the rest in your fridge)
  • Eggs (egg beaters or whole eggs, whatever you like)
  • Butter (or a butter substitute)
  • Oil (olive oil is the most expensive)
  • Chicken stock (or vegetable stock, in a carton or cubed)


Techniques

Basic (super duper duper basic) instructions on how to cook various items. I am not a trained professional- the information I’m providing is based off of personal experience only.

Meat

  • Steak (skirt steak or cube steak are easiest)
    • Cooking: Cook with oil. Outside of the steak should be grey. The inside should be light pink.
    • Seasoning: Create a simple spice blend and rub it all over the meat. Spice rubs always include salt and pepper, add whatever other spices you want.
    • Pair with: Starches or veggies.
  • Chicken (skinless and precut are easiest)
    • Cooking: Cook with oil. Outside should be starting to crisp, inside should be white and dry.
    • Seasoning: Salt and pepper work best. You can also coat chicken in panko bread crumbs.
    • Pair with: Starches, veggies, fruits, or pasta.
  • Pork (pork chops are easiest)
    • Cooking: Cook with butter or oil. Outside should be starting to crisp. Inside should be the same color as the outside, and should feel very dry and hard.
    • Seasoning: Create a simple spice blend and rub it all over the meat. Spice rubs always include salt and pepper, add whatever other spices you want. Meat should be completely coated in the spice rub, or it won’t taste like anything but the oil.
    • Pair with: Starches, veggies, or fruits.

Starches

  • Potatoes (little potatoes are easiest)
    • Cooking: Cook with oil. Outside should be starting to crisp, inside fork tender.
    • Seasoning: Rub (literally rub the potatoes with your hands) salt, pepper, oil and rosemary all over the potatoes.
  • Pasta (shapes are easiest)
    • Cooking: Boil water with a teaspoon of salt. Wait until the water is visibly boiling to add your pasta. I like my pasta al dente, so I always cook it for the shortest amount of time listed on the box.
    • Seasoning: Thoroughly coat pasta with whatever sauce you’re using, or it will taste dry. Good prepared sauce brands: Newman’s Own, Classico, and Barilla.
  • Orzo/Cous Cous/Pastina
    • Cooking: Cook in chicken or vegetable stock following package instructions. Stir every so often, and add additional stock as it is absorbed into the pasta.
    • Seasoning: I like to add dried herbs to the sauce as it reduces to add flavor. You can also add veggies early on and let them cook in the sauce.

Veggies

  • Carrots/parsnips/beets (chopped are easiest)
    • Cooking: These can be pan fried in oil, boiled, cooked in a sauce/stew, or put on a sheet tray to roast in the oven. The easiest way to cook them is to add them to a sauce that you are heating up, and allow them to soften until they can be pierced by a fork.
    • Seasoning: Rub the veggies with salt before cooking, unless you are adding them to a sauce or stew.
  • Green beans/asparagus/brussels sprouts
    • Cooking: These are best pan fried with butter. Cook them until they are slightly crisped and fork tender. If you want to be fancy you can blanch them before hand. How to blanch: Boil water, and throw the veggies in for literally thirty seconds. Pour them into a strainer and douse them immediately with cold water from your sink tap until they are cool to the touch.
    • Seasoning: Salt works best before cooking. Butter after cooking.
  • Squash/eggplant/sweet potato (chopped are easiest)
    • Yes I know that sweet potato is a starch, but it fits better here.
    • Cooking: These veggies are best roasted until fork tender. Time varies. These veggies should be cooked with their skin left on.
    • Seasoning: Rub these veggies with salt and cook in a little oil. Top with butter after they are cooked.


Resources

- My Pasta Sauce Post. Click here.

- College Student Cookbook. Click here.

- Broke College Kid Masterpost. Click here.

- Cooking on A Bootstrap. Click here.

- Good and Cheap. Click here.

- Budget Bytes. Click here.

- Meals On The Go. Click here. (Not a cookbook, but super helpful)


I hope this helps!

Ramen hacks 101

Hey does anyone else have a lot of trouble getting out of bed and feeding themselves sometimes? Yeah me too. BUT I’ve basically gotten the cheap, easy, fast ramen thing down to a T by this point and thought I’d share it with you guys. It can be made very easily for any type of diet, including gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian. 

Time: Will vary depending on your ingredients, but at minimum it’ll take about 5-10 minutes. 

For just a soup base+noodles, you will need:

  • A package of cheap-ass ramen noodles - throw away the seasoning packet or save it to use with something else. Buy in bulk if you don’t want to go to the store every time you want noodles. If you’re gluten-free, get rice noodles or another gluten-free option. 
  • Miso paste - I got mine for about $3, and it lasts for a very long time in the fridge. Pro tip: it’s cheaper at an Asian grocery store or market if you have access to one.
  • Stock cube/paste - around $2 at my local grocery store. I went for low-sodium chicken stock cubes, but you use your preferred type.
  • Water - about 2-3 cups for one portion depending on how big your bowl is. Remember, if you’re adding in extras, the liquid level will rise. I’ve made that mistake way too many times.

If you want extras, some good options to mix and match at your preference/budget/convenience are

Vegetables:

  • Bean sprouts - super cheap at the grocery store. Just throw a handful in and call it a day. I like mine to still be a little crunchy so I do it in the last 2 minutes of cooking.
  • Snow peas - ditto to the bean sprouts. Extras can be frozen.
  • Onion - I typically use half or a quarter of a white onion cut into thin slices, and tossed in the broth asap because I like it a bit more tender. Freeze the rest if you’re not going to be using it within the next few days.
  • Green onion/scallions - 1-2 will be good for one portion. Slice in thin disks, or on an angle if you’re fancy. Also you can use both the tops (green) and the bottoms (white), but that’s to your preference. I typically use these as a garnish, but you can add them in whenever you’d like.
  • Bok/pak choi - one of my favorite vegetables in the entire world. It can be found in most grocery stores nowadays, but is much cheaper at an Asian market if you have access to one. Cut off the very bottom part and then cut the pieces in half length-wise. Throw them in at the beginning if you like them softer, or in the last 3 minutes if you still want them a bit crunchy.
  • Spinach - just chuck in a handful whenever. Spinach can also be used frozen and is often cheaper to either buy it already frozen, or buy fresh in bulk and store it in your freezer to have forever. Get those vitamins!
  • Shredded carrot - you may not have the time/energy to shred carrots. Buy the pre-shredded kind and freeze whatever you have left over.
  • Corn - use frozen.
  • Mushrooms - slice thinly or buy pre-sliced. Add to broth toward the beginning.

Protein:

  • Tofu - silken tofu is usually the best option for this, but use whatever it is you have/can afford. Cut into small cubes and add whenever you’d like.
  • Soft-boiled egg - how to boil an egg or whatever your favorite method is.
  • Chicken - use leftover cooked chicken to add to your soup or slice a raw chicken breast thinly and poach it at a gentle simmer in the broth for 7-10 minutes or until it is white and opaque. It does take a little extra time, but you don’t actually have to do anything while it cooks and this will add extra flavor. Pre-marinated chicken is good for this as well (look for “Asian” flavors like soy, sesame, ginger, garlic, chili, etc.). Again, more expensive or time-consuming if you’re marinating it yourself, but it’s up to you. 
  • Shrimp - use pre-cooked frozen shrimp to save time and just dump in a handful. Buy the frozen stuff in bulk. Or, like with the chicken, poach raw shrimp in the broth until they are pink and opaque. 

Additional flavorings:

  • Garlic - either use a garlic crusher if you have it or just toss in thin slices into the pan with a little bit of veg or sesame oil for about 2 minutes, before you add your liquid. I buy pre-crushed frozen garlic that comes in little cubes and just pop them straight into whatever I’m cooking. There’s also that pre-crushed/chopped garlic in a paste or little jars. The pre-prepared stuff is more expensive than just buying bulbs of garlic BUT it will last you a while and saves a lot of time and energy.
  • Ginger - same as the garlic.
  • Chilis - chopped into thin disks. Take out the seeds and white part inside the chili if you don’t like it too spicy. Add as a garnish or into the broth if you like it a little spicier.
  • Hot sauce - use your favorite brand.
  • Chili oil - I got mine for about $1.50 and it’s a must-have for me in my soup. I drizzle a couple teaspoons on top when my soup is all done.
  • Soy sauce - light or dark soy is fine. Add as much or as little as you like.
  • Sesame oil - this is quite strong, so a little goes a long way. Use about a teaspoon.
  • Fish sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine/mirin/sake - these are great flavors but may be a bit harder to find and tend to be a little more expensive. Use about 1-2 teaspoons if you have it.
  • Cilantro - throw the stalks into your broth and strain them out afterward or just use the leaves as a garnish.
  • Lemon or lime - a squeeze to taste.
  • Sesame seeds - sprinkle on top.

Like I said, all the above ingredients are simply suggestions. It’s up to you to decide what you want, what you have the time and energy for, and what you can afford. This is just to show you the range of options.

Method:

  1. Prep whatever ingredients you’re using (slice/chop/take out of freezer). If you’re not using any, just go to step 2.
  2. Bring 2-3 cups of water to a boil. If you have an electric kettle, this will make the process much quicker.
  3. Add in your stock cube and miso paste and cook for about 2 minutes until they dissolve. You may want to stir a couple times just to help it along. 
  4. Add in whatever vegetables/protein/additional flavorings above suit your fancy and cook to your liking. 
  5. Add noodles and cook for 3 minutes. 
  6. Put food in bowl. Don’t worry about making it pretty. Garnish as you like.
  7. Put food in mouth. 

Done!

Put any leftover soup you may have into a tupperware or thermos and take it to work/school the next day. Or save it for 3-4 days in the fridge and heat it up when you’re hungry. 

Another pro tip: you can make the soup base in bulk and freeze whatever you don’t use. when you want soup but don’t want to go through the whole process again, stick the frozen soup in the microwave/melt in a pot on the stove, bring to a boil, add in your noodles/extras and you’re good to go.

Enjoy!

2

I. had this idea outta nowhere in my big pile of things I wanna draw and I just. went for it.

Jesse’s first time meeting Hanzo’s parents :b Technically this could be College AU? (+bonus stealth Genyatta)

They’re ok parents, I promise, they spoil their kids, just that they’re uh. Still escaped former yakuza? Maybe? So they have The Look.

[commission info]

anonymous asked:

This year I'm moving into a school owned apartment on my school's campus, but the kitchenette only has a microwave. I'm kind of having a hard time looking for ways that I can cook myself more meals than just the frozen stuff at the grocery store and I wondered if you had some advice ?

Check out your college’s student handbook, and see if they allow any of the following cooking appliances. These can get expensive, but are well worth the money and will give you more dining options:

I would also recommend you get some cooking supplies like this set sold on Amazon. There’s also this microwave cooking set. I’ve scoured the Internet and found you the following recipes. 

Microwave Cooking Recipes

Apple Pie

Applesauce

Baked Potatoes/Yams

Banana French Toast Sticks

Brownie

Cauliflower Rice

Cheesy Flatbread

Chicken and Rice Wraps

Chocolate Cupcakes

Cookie In A Cup

Corn on the Cob

Egg Sandwich

Egg White Omelettes

Espresso Mug Cake

Fudge

Gluten Free Muffin

Green Bean Casserole

Grilled chicken + veggies

Ham, Cheese, and Chicken Rolls 

Humus

Mac + Cheese

Mac + Cheese 2

Mashed Potato

Microwave Mochi

Microwave Breakfast Mug

Mug Lasagna 

Nachos for One

Nutella Cookie

Oatmeal

Omelette In A Mug

Pasta

Pita Pizza

Peanutbutter Mug Cake

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Pork Chinese Bun

Pork Chow Mein

Pulled Chicken Sandwich 

Pumpkin Cake

Rice

Rice + Veggies

Scrambled Eggs

Soup

Spaghetti Squash

Spiced Apple Cake

Stuffed Zucchini 

Sweet Potato Chips

Tuna Melt

Vegan Mug Brownies

Compilation Posts

“18 Microwave Snacks You Can Cook In A Mug” by Buzzfeed

“50 Healthy Microwave Recipes” by DIYNow.net

“Dining Hall Blues” by Michelle Ma

Ree Drummond’s “Dorm Room Dining”

So today I decided that I should probably use up my meal plan and I begrudgingly walk over to the cafeteria to get food. After I’ve finished eating my less than mediocre burger I start to head out the door when I notice some spectacularly yellow bananas. Amidst a sea of less than tolerable food shone these bright yellow beacons of hope that I can’t resist helping myself to for future smoothies. So I grab not one, not two, or even three, but SIX of these glorious yellow rods of delight. I begin to stroll out the cafeteria with six bananas draping over my arm because it’s finals week and I couldn’t give less of a shit about carrying around 6 bananas, when I am stopped by a cafeteria lady. She stops to tell me that we are only allowed to take 1 fruit item out of the cafeteria and all I could do was stare for what seemed like an eternity. Without even thinking, I just sprinted the fuck outta there. I didn’t just leave the cafeteria, I went much further. I ran past the next two buildings and across the entire campus. I was getting a lot of states but I didn’t care, I was free. I had never felt this alive as I was sprinting across campus. I didn’t even stop when I got to my dorm building, I sprinted all the way up into my dorm wielding 6 bananas until I got into my room. I have been existing 18 years, but I haven’t truly lived until this day.

anonymous asked:

Do you have any tips for using seasonings when cooking? Or tips to help cook in general for some one new to it.

College Cooking 101

Materials

Here is a list of materials that I believe are absolutely necessary to creating a quality product. Feel free to substitute anything based on your own personal preferences.

Cooking supplies:

  • Non-stick frying pan (cast iron pans are much more difficult to clean)
  • Pot (I would recommend a small pot that you can use to cook for just yourself, and a larger pot for cooking portions or for company)
  • Lid for said pot
  • Rubber spatula (much better than wooden spoons)
  • Tongs
  • Sheet tray
  • Strainer
  • Scissors (kitchen scissors)
  • A cutting board (I recommend plastic because they’re easier to wash)
  • Cutting knife
  • Bread knife (both knives should be sharpened every six months at least, you can take them to your local kitchen supplies shop)

Spices:

  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Dried chives (or real chives if you can swing them. Throw them in your ramen, your tuna salad, sprinkle them on top of pasta, etc)
  • Thyme (dried or fresh… dried is 3x as potent, use to season soups or pastas)
  • Rosemary (dried or fresh, use to season meats and starches)
  • Cumin (use this spice to rub meat)
  • Cinnamon
  • Sugar
  • Garlic powder or onion powder (used for meat rubs and seasoning soups or sauces)
  • Paprika (I would recommend avoiding smoked paprika, it’s got a super aggressive flavor… use this in small amounts sprinkled over things like you would the chives)

Basic produce:

  • Parmesan cheese (for sprinkling over pastas, you can get it pre-grated)
  • Cheddar cheese (for making sandwiches and mac and cheese)
  • Tomatoes (whole, crushed, paste, whatever… just have some sort of tomato product in your pantry at all times)
  • Potatoes (you can’t buy them pre-cut because the oxidize and turn gray if not used immediately… you can still eat them, but they don’t look pretty)
  • Onions (you can get them pre-cut)
  • Garlic (use to make sauce or soup bases)
  • Romaine hearts (lettuce has a short shelf life, but romaine hearts literally last forever and are healthier than eating iceberg lettuce)
  • Protein of some sort (whatever you like- steak, chicken, tofu, etc)
  • Something salty (like pickles, black olives, anchovies, etc)
  • Your favorite veggies (I like carrots and squashes the best)
  • Pasta (whatever is cheapest or on sale at your store)
  • Bread (freeze half a loaf and leave the rest in your fridge)
  • Eggs (egg beaters or whole eggs, whatever you like)
  • Butter (or a butter substitute)
  • Oil (olive oil is the most expensive)
  • Chicken stock (or vegetable stock, in a carton or cubed)

Techniques

Basic (super duper duper basic) instructions on how to cook various items. I am not a trained professional- the information I’m providing is based off of personal experience only.

Meat

  • Cooking: Cook with oil. Outside of the steak should be grey. The inside should be light pink.
  • Seasoning: Create a simple spice blend and rub it all over the meat. Spice rubs always include salt and pepper, add whatever other spices you want.
  • Pair with: Starches or veggies.
  • Cooking: Cook with oil. Outside should be starting to crisp, inside should be white and dry.
  • Seasoning: Salt and pepper work best. You can also coat chicken in panko bread crumbs.
  • Pair with: Starches, veggies, fruits, or pasta.
  • Cooking: Cook with butter or oil. Outside should be starting to crisp. Inside should be the same color as the outside, and should feel very dry and hard.
  • Seasoning: Create a simple spice blend and rub it all over the meat. Spice rubs always include salt and pepper, add whatever other spices you want. Meat should be completely coated in the spice rub, or it won’t taste like anything but the oil.
  • Pair with: Starches, veggies, or fruits.

Starches

  • Cooking: Cook with oil. Outside should be starting to crisp, inside fork tender.
  • Seasoning: Rub (literally rub the potatoes with your hands) salt, pepper, oil and rosemary all over the potatoes.
  • Cooking: Boil water with a teaspoon of salt. Wait until the water is visibly boiling to add your pasta. I like my pasta al dente, so I always cook it for the shortest amount of time listed on the box.
  • Seasoning: Thoroughly coat pasta with whatever sauce you’re using, or it will taste dry. Good prepared sauce brands: Newman’s Own, Classico, and Barilla.
  • Cooking: Cook in chicken or vegetable stock following package instructions. Stir every so often, and add additional stock as it is absorbed into the pasta.
  • Seasoning: I like to add dried herbs to the sauce as it reduces to add flavor. You can also add veggies early on and let them cook in the sauce.

Veggies

  • Cooking: These can be pan fried in oil, boiled, cooked in a sauce/stew, or put on a sheet tray to roast in the oven. The easiest way to cook them is to add them to a sauce that you are heating up, and allow them to soften until they can be pierced by a fork.
  • Seasoning: Rub the veggies with salt before cooking, unless you are adding them to a sauce or stew.
  • Cooking: These are best pan fried with butter. Cook them until they are slightly crisped and fork tender. If you want to be fancy you can blanch them before hand. How to blanch: Boil water, and throw the veggies in for literally thirty seconds. Pour them into a strainer and douse them immediately with cold water from your sink tap until they are cool to the touch.
  • Seasoning: Salt works best before cooking. Butter after cooking.
  • Yes I know that sweet potato is a starch, but it fits better here.
  • Cooking: These veggies are best roasted until fork tender. Time varies. These veggies should be cooked with their skin left on.
  • Seasoning: Rub these veggies with salt and cook in a little oil. Top with butter after they are cooked.

Resources

- My Pasta Sauce Post. Click here.

- College Student Cookbook. Click here.

- Broke College Kid Masterpost. Click here.

- Cooking on A Bootstrap. Click here.

- Good and Cheap. Click here.

- Budget Bytes. Click here.

- Meals On The Go. Click here. (Not a cookbook, but super helpful)

I hope this helps!

Tips To Make Your College Experience Cheaper

Textbook websites

  • List of websites where you can find free ebooks, specified by subject.
  • Slugbooks.com (to compare textbook prices)
  • Thriftbooks.com  
  • Bigwords.com (price comparison)
  • Chegg.com
  • Abebooks.com (offers textbook editions, like unbound ones, that are cheaper than retailers)
  • directtextbooks.com
  • studentbooktrades.com
  • Bookrenter.com (shipping is free, as well as the shipping back to the warehouse)
  • gutenberg.org (free e-books)
  • campusbooks.com
  • textbooks.com
  • Allbookstores.com (searching shows the lowest price for a book)
  • textbookrecycling.com
  • bookscouter.com (find the highest buy back site for a book)
  • ecampus.com
  • bookbyte.com
  • bookdepository.com (Good for English majors, discounted books shipped around the world)
  • gen.lib.rus.ec (free digital copies of books)
  • HERE is a huge list of textbook PDFs.

Textbook tips

  • ALWAYS check to see if textbook websites have online coupons. Check outside websites like RetailMeNot.com but also sign up for their email listing. They often send you a coupon for just signing up and will continually send you other coupon deals.
  • Amazon has good deals on books sometimes and they offer college students temporary free membership. Here’s a link explaining some of the details.
  • Amazon and other retailers, like Barnes and Noble also offer textbook rental. You get the book for a certain amount of time (30 days, 60 days, 90 days, etc., then mail it back to them.) Much cheaper than buying.
  • Some professors put textbooks on reserve in the library so you can check them out for an hour or two instead of actually buying them.
  • If your class textbooks are at the library and you need them for longer than allowed, you can always photocopy them.
  • Look for Facebook pages/groups with your school name and year, people are always posting online to get rid of their textbooks.
  • If your books are older/literature type books they are often available as e-books for free or easy to find at used bookstore or thrift stores.
  • Ask your professor after hours if you can borrow and make copies of the class textbook.
  • Many colleges use the Link+ library sharing program or something similar. If the textbook you need isn’t offered in the library, another school within the program can deliver the book for free. Ask you school’s librarians about it.
  • If you have a class that requires a “reader,” which is just a bunch of articles, you can usually find them at the school library or online.
  • Keep your textbooks in the best condition possible, so they sell for higher when you no longer need them.
  • If you can access your class list and the emails of your classmates early, ask if anyone would like to share a textbook. Split the price and share it or just ask to copy the chapters needed.

General tips

  • If you get financial aid, set it up to deposit into your own checking account because FAFSA ATMs are frustrating.
  • Check out the dollar stores for some college supplies. They have pens, notebooks, planners, etc.
  • Find upperclassmen who are moving out of their dorms/apartments, they often sell/give away items they are no longer going to be using.
  • Find out if your department offers free printing to undergrads. If yours doesn’t, find a friend whose department does.
  • Pretty much every school offers a MS Office license to students for free. It may not be well advertised but make sure to find out before paying for the programs on your own.
  • Bulk supply stores are usually cheaper.
  • Use your phone’s planner and alerts for assignments.
  • If you need energy boosts, it’s definitely cheaper to brew your own coffee and tea, then use a travel mug. But if you need to go to places like Starbucks, sign up for the Starbucks card so you can get free refills on certain items and get discounts for members only.
  • Find out what free courses your school offers and go to them instead of paying for a tutor.
  • At many universities there are conferences and talks almost daily, which often offer free lunches and dinners.
  • Some colleges offer free cab services so make sure to look into that.
  • Most school health care places give out free condoms and they are often given out at events too.
  • Besides math, older editions of textbooks are usually just fine and much cheaper.
  • Thrift stores are great if you need items for your dorm or apartment, they have appliances and offer testing areas in a section of the store.
  • Specific to Seattle: There’s a place called Seattle ReCreative and you can get school supplies for extremely cheap.
  • Check when stores offer back to school sales and get supplies then for cheaper than usual.
  • Get your syllabus as soon as possible so you can photocopy all the needed pages in textbooks.
  • Look for websites that offer similar information in the textbook, sometimes it’s explained better online, gives examples, or just generally better worded.
  • Buy school supplies during tax-free weekend.
  • Apply for as many local scholarships as possible and do it every year in college, not just freshman year.
  • Ask absolutely every place you go if they offer student discounts. Many places don’t advertise this, but will offer some kind of discount if you show your student ID.
  • Find out if your school has assistance options for lower income students.
  • HERE is a list of food budget tips, recipes, and websites to help.
  • Some classes have extra fees for whatever reason, for example they will charge more if certain equipment will be used. If it’s not a course you need, sometimes it’s better to find cheaper elective classes.
  • Consider community college to save money, and then transfer to a 4 year school. Or attend community college classes during the summer but make sure to always check if the credits transfer.
  • If you need to use a credit card, try to get on with cash back rewards. Also check which banks offer perks for students, like free checking or a no-free policy for low minimum balances.
  • Check out your college newspaper and signs around campus. You will often find information about free events or find coupons with discounts on near by businesses.
  • School supplies that don’t sell at stores like Walmart and Target are extremely discounted during the last week of August.
  • Always check if stores price check.
University Survival Tips
  • Instant rice is your friend
  • Srs tho it will save you so much time
  • Actually go to your contact hours
  • Keep a stockpile of tinned pulses in your cupboard
  • They’re a v inexpensive source of protein
  • Plus you can make them into a meal in about 10 minutes
  • Always have a ‘crisis meal’ prepared
  • Like a frozen pizza or a can of soup or something
  • Something really quick and easy for evenings when it’s all going tits up
  • Keep hydrated
  • Cliche yeah but seriously it will make you 100x more productive
  • Try to stay like semi organised and on top of things
  • Will save you so much stress
  • Sometimes you’re going to have to stay up until 1am working
  • That’s okay and normal
  • But do try to keep some kind of sleep cycle going
  • Pick 2 or 3 things to do outside your degree
  • Like join some societies or do something with your uni’s student council or just anything that isn’t directly to do with academics
  • Balance is important
  • Sometimes it will all get a bit much and you’ll have a good cry
  • That is very okay
  • Uni is hard and adapting to uni is hard and I promise we’ve all been there
  • You wouldn’t have gotten in if you weren’t academically capable
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback
  • If your lecturer puts the slidesets up somewhere in advance and you make written notes please please please print them off ffs
  • Much easier to annotate a handout than try to scribble down what’s on the slides
  • And that way you will actually hear what the lecturer is saying
  • Don’t be afraid to talk to your tutor
  • They’re there to help and I guarantee you will not be the first or last student to come to them with whatever issue you’re having
  • Take care of yourself
  • You will be fine
  • You got this