Kitchen cupboard checklist
Cooking good, wholesome meals starts with making sure you have a back catalogue of store cupboard essentials to draw on when inspiration and time levels are running low. These ten reasonably-priced, everyday basics will help new students whip up tasty, filling meals and give them some scope for getting creative in the kitchen as their confidence grows.
1. Tinned tomatoes
These are so versatile - add them to sauces, casseroles, pasta dishes and soups to give a rich tomato base or stir them into scrambled eggs for a protein-packed breakfast.
High in protein and low in fat, mash with olive oil and seasoning to make a rough hummus or roast as an alternative to potatoes.
3. Tinned tuna in olive oil
Tuna pasta with mayonnaise is a classic student meal but they can also stuff omega-3-rich tinned fish into sandwiches, spread over a jacket potato or scatter over salad for lunch on the go.
4. Rice or lentils
Whether you choose brown or white rice or red or green lentils, they’re both great meal bulkers. Add to soups, salads and stews to make them go further.
The ultimate convenience food; stock up on a variety of shapes and styles, from spaghetti to bow-shaped farfalle and tubes of penne, so students can mix up their meals.
6. Oil - sunflower and olive
Students can use sunflower oil for everything from roasting vegetables to frying fish, while distinctively-flavoured olive oil will add flavour to dressings and sauces.
7. Porridge oats
Cook with milk and a squeeze of honey for a quick and filling breakfast or mix with melted butter and chopped fruit and nuts and bake for cheat’s flapjacks.
8. Herbs and spices
Dried herbs and spices transform simple dishes into something special. Start your students off with a starter pack of chilli flakes, salt, pepper, rosemary, basil and curry powder.
9. Stock cubes
Store a mix of vegetable and chicken stock cubes - they will help give soups, gravy and sauces an added kick of flavour and seasoning.
A squeeze of runny honey adds richness to fruit and porridge at breakfast and can be mixed with spices and oil to give chicken, stir fries and root veggies a sweet twist.