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student meal ideas

Five student-friendly meal ideas

They’ve got a cupboard full of essentials, so these fuss-free meal ideas should be a breeze. Each recipe uses minimal ingredients, most of which can be found in the Simply M&S range in store, and is quick and easy enough to try when they’ve got limited time to spend in the kitchen.

Easy Huevos Rancheros

Make this cheat’s version of the popular Mexican breakfast for a hearty brunch or quick dinner or whenever you have a few eggs to use up.

You will need:

  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 3 or 4 eggs
  • Pinch of dried chilli flakes
  • Splash of olive oil
  1. Pour the tin of chopped tomatoes and the chilli flakes into a frying pan with a splash of olive oil over a medium heat and cook for five minutes until thick and rich.
  2. Make little wells in the tomato sauce with a spoon and crack the eggs into the wells.
  3. Let them lightly poach for around three or four minutes to ensure a runny yolk.
  4. Season to taste and serve immediately with toast or bread to mop up the sauce.

Simple Sunday roast

If you can cook a Sunday roast, you can cook anything. Take the easy route with this three ingredient recipe for great roast chicken.

You will need:

  • Whole raw chicken
  • 400g tin of chickpeas
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°c and place the chicken in a roasting tray.
  2. Slice the lemons in half, squeeze over the chicken and stuff into the chicken’s cavity.
  3. Rub the olive oil over the chicken and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Put the chicken into the oven and cook for 25 minutes per 500g of weight. For example, if your chicken weighs 2kg, it needs to roast for 1 hr 40 minutes.
  5. Drain and rinse your tin of chickpeas.
  6. Halfway through cooking the chicken, remove from the oven and pour the tin of chickpeas into the roasting tray.
  7. When the cooking time is up, test the chicken is cooked by piercing it with a knife, if the juices run clear, it’s cooked. Leave it to rest wrapped in foil for around 10 minutes before carving and serving with the roasted chickpeas.

The ten-minute meal

When you just want dinner with minimal effort, pasta is an easy choice. There are endless combinations for toppings, but we’ve selected a few of our favourites so you can mix and match as the mood takes you.

You will need:

  • 200g of pasta of your choice
  • Splash of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper


  • A handful each of chopped cherry tomatoes and basil and the rind and juice from a lemon
  • A small bag of washed spinach, six sliced button mushrooms and 50ml cream
  • A pack of shelled, cooked prawns, pinch of chilli flakes and the rind and juice from a lemon
  • A bag of rocket, two crushed garlic cloves, 50g of salted butter
  1. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil and add a pinch of salt.
  2. Cook your pasta as per the pack instructions.
  3. Drain and add a topping of your choice.

Quick French toast

Use up any sliced bread that’s going stale with this tasty take on brunch or breakfast. Top with sliced banana or berries if you have them in the fruit bowl.

You will need:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp of sugar
  • 2 or 3 slices of bread
  • 50ml of milk
  1. Whisk the egg in a bowl with the milk and sugar.
  2. Dip the bread slices into the mixtures until coated.
  3. Heat a little oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and drop in the bread slices.
  4. Cook for a few minutes on each side until golden brown.

Three-ingredient pancakes

You will need:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 170g of porridge oats
  • 70ml of milk
  1. Blend all of the ingredients together until smooth.
  2. Heat a little butter or sunflower oil in a saucepan.
  3. Drop generous dollops of the mixture into the pan, cooking for a minute or two before gently flipping them over to brown on both sides evenly.
  4. Dust with sugar or a squeeze of honey to serve.

Published 13/09/2016