Trip to the Gyp: One-Tray-Meal Edition

Sorry in advance if you don’t have an oven…

One tray meals are a seriously underrated aspect of student cooking (assuming that your college was benevolent enough to give you an oven)  Very excitingly for dishwasher-deprived students, it minimises washing up.  And although the overall cooking time may be longer, the oven is doing the vast majority of the work for you.

So instead of hovering over a hob for half an hour, you can crack on with some work with the added motivation of knowing that there is something yummy cooking away in the oven.

Due to the size of my tin, all these recipes serve two.  So you have some for a lucky flatmate or for the next day!

Feta tart

This meal looks impressive, but is actually really simple to make.  It’s great if you are cooking for someone else and need to show off.

What you need:

Pre-made puff pastry

½ jar red pesto

1 red onion

½ jar sun dried tomatoes

1 block of feta cheese

What to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Put baking paper on a baking tray, and then the pre-made pastry on the baking paper.
  3. Spread the pesto over the pastry as if you were spreading sauce on a pizza. Fold over the edges of the pastry, so that you get more of a crust.

    Smiling because term is over

  4. Finely chop a red onion, and put that and the sundried tomatoes on the tart. Crumble the feta cheese over the top.

    It’s basically a bougie pizza

  5. Bake for ten to fifteen minutes, until the pastry is golden, and the cheese is somewhat browned on the top.


My flatmate really embraced her inner Nigella Lawson with the presentation of this one

Creamy Sweet Potato Curry

 Yes, I know it’s possible to make curry on a hob.  But it’s also possible for the oven to make it for you while you do something far more entertaining (like read more of our incredible Tab articles).

What you need:

3 sweet potatoes

1 tin of coconut milk

½ jar curry paste

1 tin chickpeas

Several handfuls of spinach (I didn’t measure it sorry…)

Naan bread

What to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Peel and chop the sweet potatoes. Tip them into a roasting dish with some olive oil.  Roast for about twenty minutes, until you’re able to impale them easily with a fork.

    I sprinkled cumin on these because it was sitting at the back of my cupboard and I was excited to give it an outing

  3. Tip the coconut milk in. Stir in the curry paste.  I used korma paste, but you’re welcome to use your favourite!  Add the chickpeas and the spinach.

    Spinach shrinks down so much, so always add way more than you think you’ll need (I went on to add more after this photo)

  4. Return to the oven for another ten minutes, until the spinach is soft but not mushy.

    See? It is perfectly possible to make curry in the oven

  5. Eat with naan bread because it’s a reason to eat naan bread.

    Coriander makes everything look artsy


Tomato Gnocchi Bake

Not gonna lie this is my favourite dish in this article – there’s just something so wholesome and wintery about it.

 What you need:

1 red pepper

1 red onion

1 packet of gnocchi (it’ll be in the fresh pasta section of the supermarket)

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 ball of mozzarella

What you do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Roughly chop the red pepper and red onion (there’s almost as much Red in this meal as there is in my playlists). Put in a roasting tin and drizzle with olive oil.  I also seasoned mine with dried basil and pepper, but this isn’t compulsory.  Pop it in the oven for fifteen minutes.

    Boom, roasted!

  3. Tip in the chopped tomatoes and the gnocchi. Give it a good stir, so that everything is just covered by the liquid.  Return the tray to the oven for fifteen minutes.

    I definitely did not cut my finger on the can of chopped tomatoes

  4. Tear the mozzarella over the top. Bake for like five more minutes, until the cheese has melted.

    Mozzarella makes everything better

    I tried to be artistic with this photo

Ta-da! I hope you enjoy these recipes, and, even more excitingly, the time you’ll save by only having one dish to wash up!

All images are author’s own

Related articles recommended by this writer:

Trip to the Gyp: the “I-can’t-cook” edition

Trip to the Gyp: Freshers’ Edition!

Trip to the Gyp: Cocktail Edition