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Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

  • after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.
  • after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

It’s that lovely time of the year, when the spooky fun of Halloween has passed, but the wave of Christmas nostalgia has not yet set in. We’re speaking, of course, of November’s holiday, Thanksgiving. Depending on where you’re going to school, the weather may have made its final shift into cooler temperatures, the trees have lost most (if not all) of their leaves, and you start craving everything from turkey, to potatoes, to pumpkin pie. 

Main image courtesy of Sanctuary Home Decor.

Since Thanksgiving is the last Thursday of November, you have a lot of time to indulge in all your seasonal favorites before heading home (or staying on campus for Friendsgiving!) to enjoy the culinary delights there. You may think that Thanksgiving-inspired food is too difficult to do in a dorm room, but we’re here to let you know that it is not too hard at all! If you need a little inspiration, look no further, in this article we’re going to talk about:

  • Ways to get into the Thanksgiving spirit
  • Our favorite Thanksgiving-inspired recipes
  • Other ways to celebrate Thanksgiving all November long

Getting in the Thanksgiving Spirit

Ways to ensure your dorm room is ready for Thanksgiving

Take a little time and decorate your dorm room to really help you channel those fun Thanksgiving vibes. Image courtesy of Banarsi Designs.

When it comes to Thanksgiving, we think there are so many easy DIY decor designs that you could pull together to really make your dorm room pop. Anything fall related is a good place to start, and we’re sure your local craft store has more than its fair share of fun Thanksgiving-inspired decor. Consider stopping in and picking up a fall leaves garland, or a wreath with fall leaves or pumpkins that would be the perfect addition to your dorm room door. Even some faux flowers to put in a vase on your windowsill would work!

If you’re operating on a shoestring budget (like most college students!) you can save your money and see what’s available on campus instead. Many campus quads are full of beautiful, mature trees that more than likely drop their leaves each November. Take a walk and collect some of your favorite shaped leaves—maples, oaks, and even ginkgo trees have very cool shaped leaves. Once you have a good amount, paint them in sparkly gold or brown. Once they’re dry, punch a hold through them and string a ribbon. There you have it, an easy DIY banner that’s sure to get you in the Thanksgiving mood!

Pumpkins and other gourds are always welcome at this time of year, so if you and your friends can get out to pumpkin patch do it! Spread them out around your dorm, or cluster them together into an awesome fall bouquet. 

You can’t go wrong with soft lighting when you’re trying to set the Thanksgiving and fall-inspired mood. Either string them up throughout your dorm, or place them near your pumpkin and gourd collection for a wonderful fall scene that’s sure to brighten up any dark, November day.

Remember those hand cut out turkeys from elementary school? Well, now is the perfect time to recreate them! Whether you put one large one on your door, or spread them out through your dorm room, you can never leave out the turkey when it comes to Thanksgiving. 

Pro tip: Level up the construction paper turkey idea and use it to list the things you and your roommate(s) are thankful for. In the hand area, write “I am thankful for…” and in the finger/feather portion, write in all the things you are grateful for in your life, such as friends, family, love, etc. Leave some of the turkey feathers blank to see what your floor mates write in!

Our Favorite Thanksgiving-Inspired Recipes to Make in Your Dorm Room

Consider making some of these favorites as you study for classes and wait for the Thanksgiving break!

You can make some yummy Thanksgiving-inspired food right in your dorm room! Image courtesy of NY Magazine.

While most schools don’t have a large Thanksgiving break, many typically give the holiday and the day after (Black Friday) off for students, creating a four day weekend. If you’re not that far from home, you’ll probably consider driving home, or even flying if you really want to see your family. That being said, you’re probably going to have classes up until you decide to leave on Wednesday, and your assignments are still going to be due after the Thanksgiving holiday. 

This is why we think it’s important to try and celebrate Thanksgiving all month long, and not just rush it for the end of November when you might be worried about traveling and getting your assignments done while you’re away from campus. With this in mind, we’ve come up with some delicious recipes that you can put to the test whenever you’re in the Thanksgiving mood. All are budget friendly and you can basically make them in your dorm with just a microwave and some bowls, measuring cups, plates, microwave bags (optional), and utensils. 


It simply would not be Thanksgiving without turkey in one form or another! While your dorm room devices (not to mention the school rules) do not condone or accommodate for an oven, there’s still a way to have your turkey! While it might not be exactly the same as the beautiful 10 lb. bird that your parents or grandparents make each year, you can still enjoy a little turkey on your own terms.

The next time you’re out at the grocery store, consider picking up another type of cut that’s more likely to fit in your microwave. Depending on your preferences, this could be a turkey breast, turkey leg, turkey sausage, or even turkey cutlets. All of these can be made in the microwave using a microwave bag or microwave safe wrap. Make sure to check the cooking instructions for the particular cut of turkey meat you choose, and if your microwave doesn’t rotate, you’ll need to do this part manually. Feel free to season with your favorite spices, and don’t forget to include some butter or olive oil as well. Once done, allow the turkey to rest before opening the bag or the wrap—and be careful of the steam!

You can choose to add a little gravy to your turkey with the microwave as well. You can pick up gravy packets or a jar of premade gravy and just heat up what you want to use in a microwave safe measuring cup. Then, just stir, pour over your turkey and enjoy the taste of Thanksgiving! 


Although you won't be stuffing your dorm room turkey feast, you can always make stuffing on the side! Besides, don’t we typically put a spoonful of stuffing onto our plates anyway? You absolutely cannot go wrong with a little Stove Top stuffing in this scenario. And if you’re anything like us, this handy, delicious stuffing is already a staple of your dorm room cuisine.

Simply boil the water in the microwave, stir in the stuffing mix and some butter, cover, and fluff when you’re ready to eat! It doesn’t get much easier than that. If you’re looking to add a little extra to celebrate the season, why not add some craisins, raisins, or chopped walnuts to the stuffing mix as well? And remember, there are a couple of varieties of stuffing flavors you can choose from, including turkey, cornbread, savory herb, and even whole wheat.


Here’s a good opportunity to include some veggies into your Thanksgiving food choices. There are many vegetable side dishes that are easy to do in the microwave. Just choose your favorite, like asparagus, green beans, peas, corn, or carrots. Then add some butter or oil, and any dry spices, and you’re ready to go! You could also do an easy glaze that works for just about any vegetable, which includes lemon, broth, and brown sugar. All of these ingredients are easily melted in the microwave and poured on your vegetable side of choice! 


Some people prefer regular potatoes, and some love sweet potatoes for Thanksgiving. And some even have both options available on the table! Believe it or not you can also make a dorm room friendly potato dish that is sure to remind you of your favorite spud dish from home. Just prick your potato a few times (to allow the steam to escape and prevent a potato explosion) and place it in the microwave for around 15 minutes. Because every microwave is different, we suggest checking on it after 10 minutes and see if your fork slides easily through it. If it doesn’t, give it a little more time. Smaller potatoes will cook faster than larger ones.

You can choose to keep your potatoes whole, or mash them up with a fork or masher in a bowl. Then, you choose the toppings! Go the traditional route with butter, cheese, or sour cream, or sprinkle some cinnamon and sugar for a sweet potato. 

Not interested in cooking potatoes in a microwave? Go the instant way instead! Grab a box of your favorite instant mashed potatoes, boil the water in the microwave, add the flakes and some butter, and that’s it! Easy as pie. Speaking of pie…


There’s one dessert in particular that everyone looks forward to at Thanksgiving dinner, and that’s the pumpkin pie! Now, you could easily pick up this delicious dessert at your local bakery, and just slice it up and serve it with whip cream. Or if you want to try something a little different, why not try out this pumpkin pie in a cup recipe? You only need a few ingredients and your microwave. 

Just heat up the butter and crush the gingersnap cookies in your mug to make the crust. In a separate bowl, mix together the egg, cream, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, and brown sugar and pour on top of the crust. Microwave until a knife comes out clean, about 2-5 minutes depending on your microwave. Allow to cool and add the whip cream. Enjoy! 

Other Must-Dos to Celebrate Thanksgiving

In addition to decor and a dorm friendly Thanksgiving feast, there are other ways to keep the vibes going!

Who doesn’t love watching some fun, Thanksgiving-inspired movies or TV? Image courtesy of CNET.

In the days leading up to Thanksgiving, take some time to slow down, and spend a little time enjoying favorite holiday specials like A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, or another favorite seasonal movie. This time of year many people start to feel thankful (although it’s important to remember gratitude all year long!) at Thanksgiving, so why not slow things down a bit and enjoy some simple pleasures? Take a walk outside either with friends or by yourself, and look at the trees and notice how your campus has changed with the seasons, enjoy a cup of tea or coffee, or linger in a local museum.

Another excellent way to get into the Thanksgiving spirit is to volunteer. There are plenty of charities or organizations that could use your assistance, and not just around Thanksgiving, but throughout the year! Take some time to find a soup kitchen that might need some help, or volunteer at a local nursing home or hospital. See what opportunities are available near or even on campus where you can get involved. One super easy way to give back is to pick up some extra non-perishable groceries while you’re out shopping for your Thanksgiving dorm cuisine and drop them off at a donation center. There’s nothing quite like giving back or volunteering your time to help someone else out to keep those Thanksgiving feelings going all the time!

We hope you’ll consider trying out some of these delicious Thanksgiving-inspired and dorm friendly recipes this year. No one says the yummy seasonal foods have to stop after Thanksgiving, so try making these any time of year!