Cookbooks for College Students


Sick of meals from a pizza box?  Yearning for something different?  Then it’s time for you to pick up a college cookbook!  Yep, there are cookbooks out there made especially for dorm-dwelling college students like yourselves.  Many of them aren’t all that expensive (great for budget-restricted students), and they can offer you some great new ideas and cooking adventures.

If you do a search on Amazon for college cookbooks, you’ll pull up a few results.  Some of the books are brand new, others not so new, and others may be as old as you are.  Now if you were going to purchase a book on a topic that is more time-sensitive, I would advise you not to get anything more than five years old.  However, cookbooks are another story.  Cooking is not something that drastically changes over time.  The recipes from your grandmother still can be made today.  So, if you really are looking for a bargain book, look for some of the older titles- you’re more likely to find used copies cheap.

Before you purchase a college cookbook, you’ll want to decide what you’re looking for, or what you like.  Do you like cookbooks that have lots of pictures?  Do you just want the recipes?  Or do you like stories and information to be presented along with the recipes?  It’s really a personal choice.  Now if I was going to buy one, I would want to get the best value for my money, so I’d want a thick book full of recipes.  But I also like pictures so I can see what it is the food is supposed to look like when its all done.  So I would want a book with lots of pages, and pictures.  To find this information out, I’d see how many pages the book has, and check the notes and reviews to see if it mentioned anything about pictures.  But maybe you like the kind of cookbooks that come with stories, well, there are some college cookbooks out there like that as well.

Of the ones that I see on right now, there are a few college cookbooks that stand out to me:

  • The Real College Cookbook: 50 Essentials for all College Students by G.P. McDonald.  This one stands out to me for several reasons:  it’s new, and it comes with a story.  The book chronicles the college experience of the author, who was a former procrastinating student (it took him 10 years before he finally graduated).  So as well as some tried and true recipes, it sounds like this guy will have some interesting tales to tell, as well as some handy advice to dole out.  The price isn’t too bad either – just $9.95 in the US.
  • The Healthy College Cookbook: Quick. Cheap. Easy. by Alexandra Nimetz, Jason Stanley, and Emeline Starr.  The healthy approach on this book is what caught my attention.  Most of the other college cookbooks focus on cheap eats, while this one focuses on food that’s both cheap and healthy.  This is also an appropriately priced book, at just $10.17.
  • Help! My Apartment Has a Kitchen Cookbook: 100+ Recipes with Foolproof Instructions by Kevin Mills, Nancy Mills, and Richard A. Goldberg.  If you live off campus, this sounds like the perfect cookbook, especially if you got used to mom’s cooking as a kid, and perfected the art of microwave meals whilst in the dorms.  It also promises to have easy to understand instructions that any one could figure out – yes, that means you men too!  It’s an older title, but its got almost 300 pages, and can be gotten for less than $10 used.

If you don’t feel like buying them, you can also check out your local library.  They’re likely to have at least one book.  :)

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