The Starving Student: low-budget recipes for the days of panic-buying

A recent graduate is showing students how to cook healthy, tasty meals at a time when many foods are in short supply.

Lauren Leyva runs The Starving Student, a blog aimed at inspiring and encouraging students to cook “easy, healthy and low-cost” food.

Her Instagram page, @the.starving.student, offers a mix of meat, vegetarian and vegan recipes that are all affordable on a student budget, posting almost every day.

As well as recipes, she has also shared tips on avoiding food waste and reducing plastic waste.

Some of the recipes found at The Starving Student’s Instagram page (credit: Lauren Leyva)

Lauren, who studied Architecture at the University of Nottingham, said: “I have always loved cooking and I originally started my Instagram account just to show the food I cook in general when at university.

“After being encouraged by friends and staff, I decided to add recipes to my posts and now have received so much amazing feedback about my page.

“My aim has always been to inspire students to cook easy, healthy, low-cost food and it’s great to see people being inspired by my cooking and ideas. It really is easy to cook great food by making good decisions when food shopping and learning some basic cooking skills.”

Despite the rise in stockpiling and panic-buying brought on by the coronavirus crisis, Lauren said it’s been “fairly easy” for her to find her ingredients.

“I know other people’s supermarkets may be less stocked than mine but the government has constantly said there is enough food for everyone ‒ it’s just being stripped from the shelves as soon as it goes on,” she said. “So the thing we need to do is to just shop the normal amount and not strip the shelves.”

Lauren Leyva, creator of The Starving Student

Tesco said on Wednesday that the panic-buying seen in the first weeks of the pandemic had subsided, with food stocks “returning to normal”. They have asked customers to buy in store as much as possible, because their home delivery service has been overloaded.

Last month the supermarket chain and a number of others made a joint statement asking customers to shop considerably: “We understand your concerns but buying more than is needed can sometimes mean that others will be left without. There is enough for everyone if we all work together.”

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