9 Easy Dining Hall Recipes You Haven’t Tried Yet

9 Dining Hall Recipes You Haven't Tried Yet

It’s February 17th, and if you’re like me, you’re probably sick of the same food that your dining hall has been serving up since August. Although the prospect of all-you-can-eat pizza was appealing at one point, you’ve grown tired of eating the same foods every week. Luckily for you, I’ve been working on a few dining hall recipes that will make your lunch dates a little more exciting and get you one meal closer to mamma’s home cooking in May. You can do it!

**Disclaimer: These are the ingredients that my dining hall has – your dining hall will probably have different items on the menu, so don’t be afraid to substitute ingredients or experiment and create your own dishes!

1. Tomato, Spinach, and Mozzarella Flatbread

Grab a flatbread from the bread section, then top with tomato slices, fresh spinach, and mozzarella cheese from the salad bar. Pop in the panini press for a few minutes for a colorful, healthy lunch or dinner option.

2. Colorful Veggie Pasta

Take a bowl of plain pasta with marinara sauce and add roasted veggies from the veggie/homestyle line for a colorful, hearty pasta dish.

3. Cheesy Quesadilla

This might seem like an obvious choice (or maybe your dining hall serves quesadillas already) but this has become a go-to dinner item for me. I fill a flour tortilla with beans, rice, and cheese from the Mexican line, and then pop it in the panini press for a few minutes until the cheese has melted.

4. PB, Banana, and Chocolate Chip Tortilla

Spread some peanut butter on a flour tortilla and add slices of banana and a handful of chocolate chips. Fold the tortilla in half and press between a panini grill for a warm, gooey treat.

5. Cookiewich

Heat two cookies of your choice in the microwave for a few seconds. Take one cookie, lay it face down, and swirl some fro-yo or add a scoop of hard-packed ice cream to the cookie. Top with the remaining cookie and enjoy your homemade cookiewich! (And when you get home, try our homemade cookiewiches made with Ben & Jerry’s ice cream!)

6. Burrito Bowl

Craving Mexican but it’s not burrito night? Try a do-it-yourself burrito bowl! Gather rice from the Asian line and chicken, veggies, and beans from the salad bar in a bowl. Place another bowl on top (to make a bowl dome), hold tightly (or your burrito will end up all over the floor! :)), and shake your burrito bowl for a nice mix. Voila – a burrito bowl, without the walk to Chipotle.

7. Brownie Bite Sundae

If plain fro-yo or ice cream isn’t cutting it, mix it up with some brownies! Take a brownie from the dessert bar and place it in a bowl. Add a swirl of fro-yo or ice cream on top, and top with your choice of sprinkles or fudge for a delightful brownie sundae. Bonus points if you heat the brownie up before you put it in the bowl 🙂

8. Fresh Tossed Salad

Amp up your salad by turning the salad bar into your own tossed salad! Place all your salad ingredients in a bowl, then add a second bowl on top (rims together to create a dome). Hold well and shake for a perfect tossed salad!

9. Dessert Waffle

Waffles don’t just have to be for breakfast – make a waffle and switch butter and syrup for ice cream and chocolate sauce! Don’t forget to add some sprinkles for a pop of color 🙂

Any other great dining hall recipes that I missed? If you’re off campus, we’d love to hear some of your easy go-to meals that are perfect for apartment living! Make sure you’re following us on Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram (@theswirlblog for all three!).



  • Yum! These all sound like great ideas 🙂