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DIY takeaway ideas for students

Posted at 11 May 2022 in Food & Drink

As well as blocking out everything you said after Ring of Fire last night and balancing lectures with your urge to have a lie-in, having the odd night in with a takeaway is a staple part of uni life.

Particularly if Domino’s has a student offer on.

On the flip side, being occasionally penniless is a must, too (not because it’s an experience, because we have no choice) and sometimes even student offers aren’t cheap enough. When those days come and you just cannot with spending the cash, Campus Living Villages has got you.

Gather your flatties, put your onesies on and get the biggest binge-watching addict to pick something on Netflix. We’ve joined up with a couple of our favourite food bloggers (they’re both mums and let’s be honest, there’s nothing like a parent’s cooking) to bring you DIY takeaway recipes that won’t empty your wallet/purse and they’ll actually taste good too.

We’re cooking tonight.

Homemade chicken nuggets recipe from Mrs. Rachel Brady

*Serves four*

Rachel explains that these nuggets are a bit of a faff, but a total treat. If something’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right, right? Make sure you aren’t starving hangry when you start cooking, because the chicken in these babies needs about two hours to marinate.


  • 10 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tbsp oregano
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 chicken thighs cut into chunks
  • 500ml sunflower or vegetable oil
  • 125g buttermilk


  1. Chop your chicken thighs into chunks and add to a bowl of buttermilk. Cover with cling film and leave to marinate in the fridge for about two hours
  2. Spread your flour over a large dinner plate and add the oregano, paprika, salt and pepper before mixing it all together for an even seasoning
  3. Heat your oil in a large frying pan
  4. Fry in batches. First, take a piece of chicken and shake off excess buttermilk, before coating it in your seasoned flour and transferring to the oil. Repeat this step until your pan is full and fry for about 10-12 minutes (turning halfway through), until cooked
  5. Remove the chicken nuggets with a slotted spoon and keep warm in the oven until all of your chicken is cooked through and enjoy with a pot of mayo and wedges!


Sweet and sour chicken recipe from Reduced Grub

*Serves two to three*

Kelly from Reduced Grub is a godsend for cheap, tasty meal ideas and she discovered this recipe for delicious sweet and sour chicken in an authentic Singaporean restaurant.

For the chicken

  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, diced into large pieces
  • ¼ of a pineapple, diced
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 2 chicken breasts, diced
  • 1 cup of flour

For the sauce

  • 2 tbsp cornflour
  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp sweet chili sauce


  1. Heat some vegetable oil in a frying pan
  2. Coat your chicken pieces in flour before adding them to the pan and frying for about five minutes
  3. If you want to shake off a few calories, remove the chicken at this point and place it on some kitchen roll (this will absorb some of the fat)
  4. Put your chicken back in the pan and add your tomato, pepper, onion and pineapple before cooking for another three to five minutes and emptying the mixture into a bowl
  5. Next, make your sauce. Pop all of your ingredients into the pan and slowly bring to the boil, stirring well and adding a little warm water until it thickens up nicely
  6. Once your sauce reaches the perfect consistency, add in the chicken and vegetables and coat well
  7. Serve with plain rice or a great big portion of chips!


Indian chicken curry recipe from Campus Living Villages

*Serves four*

Most of us here at Campus have been in your shoes and we know that sometimes the munchies > saving pennies. That’s why we have some hot takeaway hacks up our own sleeves.


  • 4 chicken breasts, diced
  • 4 large chilies (mild)
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 green peppers
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 200ml of chicken stock
  • 1 tsp of cornflour
  • 1 tbsp of water
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 tbsp of curry powder
  • 1 tsp of turmeric
  • 1 tsp of cumin
  • 2 gloves of garlic, crushed
  • A handful of fresh coriander


  1. Chop two of your chilies into small pieces (keep the seeds in if you like it hot!)
  2. Score vertically along the two remaining chilies and keep the seeds in. You don’t want to slice them fully
  3. Chop the chicken, onion and peppers into large chunks
  4. Warm your oil in a large frying pan on a medium-to-high heat
  5. Add your crushed garlic, onions, chopped chilies, cumin and turmeric into the pan. Cook for a minute in the oil - don’t let the spices burn!
  6. Add your chopped tomatoes, whole chilies and peppers, and stir in your curry powder. Cook for two minutes
  7. Add your diced chicken and cook for a further three to four minutes
  8. Once the chicken has started to turn white, stir in your chicken stock
  9. Turn the heat down and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes (the chicken should be tender and the liquid from your stock should have started to reduce)
  10. Mix together the cornflour and water and stir into your mixture to thicken it
  11. Season with salt and pepper and throw in your chopped coriander
  12. Serve with rice and who needs a takeaway?


Homemade pizza recipe from Mrs. Rachel Brady

*Serves four*

Learning to make your own pizza is 100% worth it, but your dough will take a few hours to rise so this is a good one to prep before you go to uni, ready for your night in. Mrs. Rachel Brady’s mouthwatering recipe will show you how!

For the dough

  • 250g plain flour
  • 250g strong white flour
  • 5g dried yeast
  • 10g salt
  • 325ml warm water
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


For the tomato sauce

  • 400g chopped tomatoes
  • 6 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 level tsp salt
  • 1 level tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


  • 125g mozzarella balls x 2
  • 400g pancetta, cut into lardons


  1. Mix together the plain flour, white flour and your salt, before adding most of the water and combining to make a dough. If needed, add the rest of your water and if the flour is too sticky, drizzle in a little more flour
  2. Knead your dough for around 10 minutes, stretching it away from you and back in – this makes the dough airy and gives it shape and a soft texture
  3. Make a ball with your dough and put it in an oiled bowl covered with cling film. Leave this somewhere fairly warm (like a warm kitchen) for a few hours, until the dough doubles in size. You don’t have to, but Rachel recommends kneading the dough and leaving it to rise a second time.
  4. To make the sauce, simply use a blender to mix together all of the ingredients until smooth
  5. When you’re ready to cook, preheat your oven to 250°C
  6. Knock back your dough one more time and divide into four pieces, before rolling them into a circle or oblong shape, making sure to roll your bases as thin as you can
  7. Spread a little oil over your baking tray, pop the dough on top and stretch it into a nice shape
  8. Use a spoon to spread a layer of your tomato sauce over the base and start to scatter mozzarella over the top, followed by the pancetta
  9. Drizzle a bit of extra virgin olive oil over the top, but not too much
  10. Cook for 7-10 minutes and eat straight away!


Lamb koftas from Campus Living Villages

This recipe couldn’t be easier to make and it’s so much healthier than a dirty doner from your local takeaway. It’s a lot tastier too!

Here’s how you make your koftas…


  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 fresh garlic clove (or ½ tsp of garlic granules)
  • 1 tsp of chili powder
  • 1 tbsp of ras el hanout
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 lemon (squeezed)
  • A handful of fresh mint
  • Black pepper
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil


  1. Add your minced lamb to a big bowl and throw in your ras el hanout, crushed garlic (or granules), chili powder, salt and pepper. Mix together as thoroughly as you can
  2. If you’ve got a pestle and mortar, use it to crush your fresh mint and squeeze your lemon juice into it (if not just chop your mint as finely as you can). Add this to your meat mixture and continue to bind it all together
  3. Now mould your koftas into individual sausage-like shapes. The easiest way to do this is to flatten your lamb into a big circle on a large chopping board or surface and then cut it into equal slices like you would a pizza. This ensures that your koftas are all of a similar size
  4. Put them in the fridge (covered in cling film) for an hour or two so they keep their shape when you come to cook them
  5. Heat your oil in a pan and then add your koftas. Turn them regularly and allow them to cook for around eight minutes
  6. Chuck them into some pitta breads and add salad. Smother in your choice of garlic mayo, chili sauce or Greek yoghurt if you’re feeling super-healthy


All of these recipes have been tried and tested either by us or these talented foodie bloggers, so you can be sure that the flavours are on-point and your flatties will be impressed.

When you’ve made yours, make sure to tag us in your pics on Instagram @campuslivingvillagesuk. The best-looking fakeaways will appear on our own page of course!

Head back to the #YouGotThis hub for more of our handy student guides!

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