Stock Your Dorm Kitchen With These 14 Essentials

You may find comfort in your college dining halls, but we've got 14 kitchen essentials for times when in-room meal prep is a must.

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June 20, 2019

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Photo By: Jennie Andrews Photography

Dorm Room Kitchen Essentials

Even if you're dishing up most of your meals in the dining hall, you still need the basic kitchen essentials in your dorm room. Here's what you'll need for quick breakfasts, late-night snacks, study sessions and more.

1: A Kitchen Cart

Dorm room space is at a premium, so movable furniture is key. That's why we love this rolling, open storage: It can be moved around the room, and you can steal a shelf for beauty essentials or office supplies when your kitchen stash is running low.

Our Pick: Metal Utility Cart from Target, $30

2: A Large Bowl

Game night won't be the same without a big, communal bowl of chips, pretzels or popcorn. Choose one in durable metal or melamine to minimize breakage risk.

Our Pick: Stripe Serving Bowl from Target, $10

3: Storage Jars

Clear glass or plastic storage containers help keep cereal and other essentials fresh. Another bonus? They take up less space than boxes do, and add dorm room style to boot.

Our Pick: Glass Jars from Amazon, $16 for 12 jars

4: Removable Labels

Keep your kitchen stock organized with stylish removable labels. Like to switch up your cereal and candy choices? Opt for chalkboard labels that can be updated as your tastes change.

Our Pick: Removable Labels from The Container Store, $5.99

5: Drinking Glasses

These glasses are small in stature but big on style, thanks to the fun triangle pattern. Choose a low-profile option that will do dual purpose for water and juice. Choose glassware made from melamine for a stylish, non-breakable option.

Our Pick: Pink Plastic Tumbler from Target, $2 each

6: On-the-Go Beverage Containers

To stay hydrated on the go, stock the room with these three essential travel cups: one for hot drinks, one for cold drinks, and one for water.

Our Pick: S'well Water Bottle from Amazon, $25.73 and up

7: Coffee Essentials

College and coffee go together like...bacon and eggs! Dress up a pair of inexpensive mugs with a fun permanent marker design, and keep coffee-making essentials on hand. If your dorm rules don't allow hot plate-style coffee pots, bring a French press or pod-style coffee maker. Don't forget the cream and sugar!

Our Pick: Keurig Single-Serve Coffee Maker from Target, $69.99 and up

8: Basic (But Beautiful) Dishes

You don't want to spend a lot of cash on basic dorm dishes, but that doesn't mean they can't have great style! Pick a mix of inexpensive, patterned bowls in small and large sizes for everything from cereal to snacks. Add a few microwave-safe plates to complete the set.

Our Pick: Tropical Print Plate from Target, $2.49 each

9: Cutting Board and Paring Knife

Feed your fruit and veggie habit with this basic cutting setup.

Our Pick: Carbon Steel Pairing Knife from Amazon, $22.99

10: Silverware

Hit the dollar store for an inexpensive set of forks, knives and spoons. Buy four settings to accommodate a small group and account for inevitable lost utensils throughout the year.

Our Pick: 20-Piece Flatware Set from Target, $10.99

11: Resealable Containers

Save leftover ramen noodles or takeout in easy-to-transport, spill-proof containers that are small enough to leave room for other essentials in your mini-fridge.

Our Pick: Glass Food Storage Set from Target, $29.99

12: Bag Clips

No one likes stale cookies and crackers! Keep snacks fresh with bag clips in a variety of sizes.

Our Pick: Bag Clips Set from Amazon, $11.99

13: Can Opener

Break open college convenience store foods with ease with a sturdy, dollar-store can opener.

Buy It: Can Opener from Target, $12.99

14: Cleaning Supplies

Yes, you have to do the dishes (eventually). Stock your room with dish soap, sponges and kitchen towels packed in a small basket to make washing dishes in the communal sink that much simpler.

Our Pick: Natural Cleaning Set from Amazon, $37.99

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