Dorm Room Favorites: Gluten-Free Microwave Meals

 

Leaving home and heading off to college for the first time can be a very exciting, but also a very stressful time. Saying goodbye to one’s home and family (and leaving behind all of mom’s home cooked meals and the guarantee of everything gluten-free) can be nerve-wracking, to say the least. Add moving into a dormitory with roommates who you have never me, eating your meals in a new, commercial dining hall, and losing your home’s fully equipped kitchen and cabinets stocked with your favorite gluten-free foods can make it seem downright scary.

You now have a small room with a tiny refrigerator and a microwave, and perhaps a box under your bed which will become your new pantry. While this is all a big adjustment, it is definitely not the end of the world when it comes to creating quick and easy snacks. Below are a handful of recipes that can be prepared in your microwave, and enjoyed anytime throughout the day. They are especially handy in case of a “crisis” such as necessary nourishment during a midnight study break, or winter days when you are virtually snowed in. These recipes are so scrumptious that even your roommates will have a whole new outlook on gluten-free treats.

Peanut Butter Cup Cereal Bites

  • 9 cups Rice Chex cereal
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • ½ cup peanut butter
  • ¼ cup butter or margarine
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar

Place cereal in large bowl and set aside. In a microwaveable bowl, combine the chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter. Place in microwave and cook on high 1 to 1 ½ minutes, stirring occasionally until smooth. Mix in vanilla until incorporated and pour over cereal. Stir until cereal is completely coated. Place cereal mixture in zip lock bag, add sugar and shake until coated. Spread evenly on waxed paper to cool, and then store in airtight container.

Chili-Cheese Dip

  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chili
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar
  • 1 bag gluten-free tortilla chips

Spread cream cheese on bottom of a 9-inch microwaveable dish. Spread chili over cream cheese, and then top with shredded cheddar. Heat in microwave on high until cheese is melted– about 5 minutes.

Buffalo Chicken Dip

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup gluten free blue cheese or ranch salad dressing
  • ½ cup hot sauce (Frank’s)
  • ½ cup crumbled gluten- free blue cheese or shredded mozzarella
  • 2 cans (9.75 oz) white premium chunk chicken breast in water, drained
  • 1 bag gluten free tortilla chips

In the bottom of a 9-inch microwaveable safe dish mix together cream cheese, salad dressing, hot sauce, cheese and chicken. Microwave uncovered on high until hot, stirring occasionally about 5 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips.

Pizza Bagels

  • 1 Udi’s Plain Bagel, cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons jarred pizza sauce
  • 8 slices pepperoni
  • 2 tablespoons shredded mozzarella

Place bagel halves on flat surface cut side up and spread each bagel with layer of pizza sauce, followed by pepperoni and cheese. Microwave on high until cheese is melted 1 to 1 ½ minutes.

Quesadillas

  • 2 gluten-free tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 tablespoon canned green chilies, minced
  • 1 jar salsa

Place tortillas on flat surface and sprinkle with cheese and green chilies. Place second tortilla on top and microwave on high until cheese is melted 30-45 seconds. Cut into wedges and serve with salsa.

Chocolate Toffee Mix

  • 4 cups Chocolate Chex cereal
  • 4 cups Cinnamon Chex cereal
  • 1 cup gluten- free mini pretzels
  • ½ cup (GF) toffee chips
  • 1 cup pecans or walnut halves
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee granules
  • 1 teaspoon hot water
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

In large microwaveable bowl, mix together cereals, pretzels, and pecans. Sprinkle toffee chips on top of cereal. In small microwaveable bowl, stir together coffee granules and hot water until dissolved. Add chocolate chips and butter, and microwave on high 1 ½ minutes stirring occasionally until smooth. Pour over cereal mixture and mix until evenly coated. Pour into zip lock bag with powdered sugar and shake until completely coated. Spread out on waxed paper or tinfoil to cool. Break apart and store in airtight container.

Cheesy bagels

  • 1 Udi’s Plain Bagel, cut in half
  • 2 slices cheese (e.g., American, Cheddar, Monterey Jack)
  • 2 slices deli turkey or ham, optional

Place bagel halves on flat surface. On one half, place 1 slice cheese, followed by deli meat and then second slice of cheese. Place top half of bagel on top of cheese and microwave on high until cheese is melted, about 30-40 seconds.

*Cooking times may vary based on power of microwave*