Dorm Room Recipes Over Thanksgiving


Traditionally speaking…  Mashed potatoes, stuffing, green beans, cranberry sauce, gravy, bread rolls and a big ole turkey are what’s needed to make the whole thanksgiving shindig come together. Whether you’re in a dorm (with limited appliances) or in an apartment near campus – creating a festive feast for yourself and any friends who’re stuck with you can be simple.

Your average dorm cooking necessities generally consist of a microwave, hot water kettle, a few bowls/plates and the same amount of utensils to pair them up. So, making your turkey day special may require a few extra gadgets. If you’re worried about money, you can stop by your local Dollar-store or Dollar-tree to pick up most of the supply options. So, you’re probably looking at spending around $25. If you don’t have one nearby, you can scope out good prices at the local marts. All in all, it shouldn’t cost you more than $50. If that blows your budget, have your friends pitch in.


  • Can opener
  • Aluminum foil 
  • Meat thermometer
  • Plastic oven cooking bag
  • 3 microwave safe dishes (preferably the squared option)
  1. Turkey (6-10 pounds max)
  2. Green Beans (fresh, frozen or canned)
  3. Instant Mash Potatoes (Idahoan tend to be the best) 
  4. OceanSpray Cranberry Sauce (it comes in whole beans or sauce form) 
  5. Stove-top stuffing (the savory herbs flavor is best for thanksgiving) 
  6. Turkey Seasoning (rosemary, olive oil, salt and pepper will do the trick)  
  7. McCormick or Bistro gravy mixer 
  8. Bread rolls 
Prepping for your meal…
Depending on the size of your bird, you’re going to need at minimum four hours of defrosting time if you buy it frozen. Buy your bird on the Monday or Tuesday prior to Thanksgiving and put it in the fridge. This will keep it cool without it spoiling. While you’re at the store, you might as well purchase the remainder of the supplies and food listed above.
Evening Before:
Unwrap and clean your turkey. Once you’ve managed to de-gut it and clean it up in your dorm kitchen, pull out a few sheets of aluminum foil and place the bird on top. Begin seasoning your turkey to your liking. Once that is complete, fully wrap it up and place it back in the fridge. 
Allowing the turkey to season throughout the night will optimize the flavor. Do not stuff it.
Day Of:
If you’re planning on eating in the mid-afternoon, allow yourself at least 2 hours prep time to cook your dinner.  
The Turkey…
According to the USDA “When cooking a turkey in the microwave, expect to allow 9 to 10 minutes per pound on medium (50%) power. Between each round, rotate the bird to ensure even cooking. The turkey is safely cooked when the food thermometer reaches a minimum internal temperature of 165 °F in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. After removing from the microwave, let the turkey stand 20 minutes before carving it.”

If you’re still unsure, check out Jenna Johnson’s microwaved turkey experiment from a few years back.

During the ‘cool down’, you can cook your side dishes.

Green Beans…
If fresh, cook in an inch of water and cover with paper towel for 2-3 minutes.

Instant Mash Potatoes…
Add water and mix in bowl and cook for 1-2 minutes.

StoveTop Stuffing…
Add water, cover with paper towel or dish cloth and cook for 1-2 minutes.

McCommick Gravy…
Add water, cover with paper towel or dish cloth and cook for 1-2 minutes.

Cranberry Sauce…
Open, stir and serve as is.

Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving and good luck to you on your dorm room meal!  As a Dorm Room Movers Author, feel free to leave your comments on any additional tips or  for Dorm Room Recipes Over Thanksgiving



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