If you’re a college student you’re probably looking for easy, fast, inexpensive Instant Pot recipes with only a few ingredients. Try out some of these Instant Pot Recipes for College Students!
Instant Pot Recipes for College Students
It’s that time of year when college students are sent on their way to live away from home and perhaps cook for themselves for the first time. It’s an exciting prospect but for some can be nerve wracking. What will I cook each night for dinner? If you’re okay with processed foods like ramen noodles then it should be easy. But if you’re wanting to cook from scratch or a combination of from scratch and convenience foods then I can help you out!
After talking with a couple college students I realized that they wanted recipes that meet these requirements:
- Few ingredients, few spices
- Fast and easy
- Doesn’t make a huge amount or leftovers are able to be repurposed
I agree! All those requirements sound fair to me.
One piece of advice I would give to college students is don’t go to the grocery store without a plan. You’ll wander aimlessly up and down all the aisles and spend way too much money. If you plan a two week meal plan (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks) you’ll be able to only grocery shop 2 times per month. And then that same two week meal plan can be used again the next time you go shopping! If you didn’t like a particular meal or felt like there was too much/too little food you can always tweak the meal plan the next time you shop.
College Student Breakfast Ideas
Don’t forget the most important meal of the day! Of course there’s always cereal and milk but if you get bored of that you can mix it up with one of these options…
Single Serving Steel Cut Oats–enough for just one person! You can also make a large batch and eat throughout the week.
Egg Bites–They are great for freezing and then popping into the microwave to warm up on a busy morning. you’ll need the egg bite mold* to make these. If you don’t have an egg bite mold you can make egg muffins in the oven.
Whole Wheat Pancake Mix–just add water and a bit of oil to make whole wheat pancakes. Top with peanut butter, honey, syrup or fruit.
Yogurt, frozen berries and granola–Make your own yogurt in the Instant Pot. If you’re skeptical that you need to make an entire gallon then just use a half gallon of milk. It’s the same process. Then store the yogurt in an airtight container for close to a month if your fridge. Serve with frozen berries and a bit of granola on top.
College Student Dinner Ideas
Many of my recipes make 4-6 servings. That’s a lot of food for one person! If you’re a big eater you can make the entire recipe and then use the leftovers for lunch or dinner the next few days. Another choice would be to halve the recipe. Please read How to Halve an Instant Pot Recipe so you can do it the right way.
Pasta is pantry friendly and cheap. And there are plenty of whole grain pasta options if you’re looking to up your nutrition. Pair the pasta with a protein and a delicious sauce and you’re set.
Related: All Instant Pot Pasta Recipes
Instant Pot Dump and Go Meatball Lasagna–A perfect dinner on those nights when you need dinner fast! This 8 ingredient pasta dish is faster than picking up pizza and it will be gobbled up in no time. Makes 4-6 servings.
Substitution ideas: ricotta can be replaced with cottage cheese, use a few dashes of dry basil instead of fresh, many types of pasta can be used
Instant Pot Cheater Lasagna–if you love the flavors of lasagna but don’t like the effort it takes this recipe is for you! You can make this Instant Pot lasagna pasta recipe with 6 ingredients and in just a few minutes.
Instant Pot Broccoli Chicken Mac and Cheese–creamy macaroni and cheese made quickly in your instant pot with tender bites of chicken and (not crisp, but not mushy) broccoli florets. This is an easy one pot meal!
I remember living on rice when I was in college. Back then I would cook white rice but now with the instant pot it’s so easy to make brown rice for a a little added nutrition.
Related: See all my Instant Pot rice dishes
Instant Pot Salsa Rice–With just 5 ingredients and a few minutes you can make a delicious dinner that your family will love. A saucy, cheesy rice with browned sausage.
Instant Pot Mexican Black Beans and Rice–the easiest and tastiest rice ever! Dump and go is the way to go! Canned black beans make this recipe very convenient.
Once of the coolest things about the Instant Pot is that you can cook chicken from frozen. Try these easy frozen chicken recipes.
Instant Pot Ranch Chicken Taco Rice—An easy 5-ingredient dump and press start recipe for the Instant Pot. Rice, chicken and black beans with lots of flavor.
Instant Pot Salsa Chicken—tender bites of chicken with an amazing sauce of just 3 ingredients. Serve one night rolled up in a tortilla and another night over rice.
Instant Pot 3-Ingredient Chicken and Gravy–an almost embarrassingly easy recipe for a good old fashioned dinner. Serve the chicken and gravy over mashed potatoes, rice, noodles, toast or biscuits.
Instant Pot Hawaiian Chicken–a super fast and easy, 5-ingredient, dump and go Instant Pot recipe of slightly sweet chicken and pineapples. Serve this chicken on Hawaiian rolls or over rice.
Instant Pot No Peek Chicken–that easy 3-ingredient chicken and rice recipe from your childhood that has cream of mushroom soup in it. Only this time it’s made in your Instant Pot.
Instant Pot Creamy Chicken–the easiest cheater recipe out there. Chicken, cream cheese, cream of chicken soup and an Italian dressing mix packet are combined to make a delicious chicken and rice dinner with hardly any work.
Instant Pot 2-Ingredient Balsamic Chicken—With literally only 2 ingredients and the fact that it’s made in the Instant Pot, this recipe couldn’t be easier to make. This balsamic chicken tastes great on salads, over rice or with a baked potato.
Instant Pot Seasoned Chicken–make a big batch of cooked, seasoned chicken and use it over salads, on sandwiches, rolled up in tortillas. Freeze in individual portions and then pop into the microwave to heat up.
Soups and Stews
Keep warm in the winter with Instant pot soups, stews and chilis. These can serve a crowd so you may want to halve the recipe or invite some friends over.
Instant Pot Cheater Beef Stew–if you’re looking for the easiest beef stew recipe you may have found it! This recipe is made quickly in your Instant Pot and requires little to no prep and only 5 ingredients. No sauteing, chopping or browning. And best of all it tastes great!
Instant Pot Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup–an easy dump and go soup recipe. This recipe freezes well too!
Instant Pot Frito Pie Chili—all the flavors from frito pie except in the form of stew. This delicious chili is made really fast and all in one pot using your Instant Pot
Instant Pot Baked Potatoes—make fluffy, moist baked potatoes in your Instant Pot without foil and in just a few minutes. Make as many or as few as you want!
2 Ingredient Recipes–If you’re trying to keep dinner super simple and don’t want to go to the grocery store for extra ingredients you might like these seven 2-ingredient recipes for dinner.
7 Pantry Instant Pot Recipes–Stock your freezer, spice cupboard and pantry with a few items and you can make these 7 different pantry Instant Pot recipes.
5-Ingredient Dump And Go Instant Pot Dinners–Don’t have a lot of time or ingredients but still want to get dinner on the table? Try one of these 12 different 5-Ingredient Dump and Go Instant Pot Dinners tonight.
7 Instant Pot Lazy Dinners–Don’t feel like cooking? Feeling lazy and can’t get motivated to make dinner? You’re in luck. Here are 7 Instant pot lazy dinners (you can also make these in the slow cooker). These lazy recipes require very little of you. In fact, these dinners are just a little more work than ordering a pizza or warming up a frozen burrito.
Top 5 EASIEST Recipes to Cook in Your Instant Pot—Love easy dinner recipes? Today I’m sharing 5 of the easiest dinners you can make in your Instant Pot. Perfect for people who don’t like to cook or for Instant Pot beginners!
30 Minute Instant Pot Meals–Need a fast dinner? Here are 10 Instant Pot recipes that can be made in 30 minutes from start to finish. These recipes are perfect to make on a busy weeknight.
10 Instant Pot Meals Under $10–Trying to cut grocery costs? Here are 10 budget friendly Instant Pot meals. Each meal serves between 4-8 people and costs less than $10 total!
*Karen Petersen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.