Celine Pun
Contributing Writer

The COVID-19 quarantine is the perfect time to check off another adulting milestone: cooking. Think about it — instead of bleeding your eyes out by using your phone screen, you can learn the aromas of your kitchen. Impress your friends, your followers, and your parents who may think that you are incompetent because you order more takeout than necessary. Besides, your wallet will thank you. If you’re a hungry, bored student looking for new recipes, here are some channels worth checking out. 

1. Peaceful Cuisine (Ryoya Takashima)

Five to 15 minutes of vegan cooking. The travels of Japan-based YouTuber Ryoya Takashima inspire the food of his cooking shows. His crisp-clean test kitchen, soft lighting, and slow panning creates a relaxing vibe. I also enjoy his videos on other cooking adventures, which include upgrading his kitchen gear and food tasting in foreign countries. Sometimes, he uploads two versions of each video — one with music and one without — but his quality audio generates ASMR that is perfect for afternoon naps or late night grinds. 

2. Binging With Babish (Andrew Rea)

Five to 30 minutes of cooking inspired by pop culture. Rea is a self-taught chef based in New York. His videos are simple: the same angles of his kitchen counter or stove, a voiceover, and the cooking process. Rea compares store-bought ingredients but then starts from scratch, making dishes like “The Perfect Bite from YOU (Netflix), and continues to adjust the recipe until he or his guests are satisfied, even if it means making an entirely different dish. I appreciate that he shows the entire cooking process: all the mistakes and redos. Rea never raises his voice and instead turns frustrations into lighthearted and sarcastic commentary. 

3. One Meal A Day 

Three minutes of quick simple meals. This unnamed Korean YouTuber has a knack for using few ingredients and producing ASMR at the same time. Frames are focused on the cooking process. No distractions. I appreciate how the YouTuber tastes and honestly reviews her meals at the end. There are English subtitles that are easy to follow along. This channel is perfect for college students with limited options and cravings for Asian cuisine. 

4. Chris Klemens

10-15 minutes of chaotic cooking. Klemens’ brand is that he does a lot of things while he is high, cooking being one of them. He talks to his audience and his cameraman, Andrew, as if they’re good friends catching up on snippets of his life. Honest and transparent, Klemens doesn’t hesitate to do things like call himself out for being incompetent in using kitchen equipment. I like that his commentary is blunt and borderline oversharing. Very entertaining and realistic. 

5. Caitlin Shoemaker 

10-20 minutes of realistic and quick vegan recipes. Shoemaker, who switched to a plant-based diet in college, noticed that online vegan recipes tended to be extremely complicated and required niche ingredients. With the lack of affordable and diverse ingredients in Santa Barbara, these recipes showcase everyday ingredients that are likely to be in your pantry or can be bought at any chain grocery store. I appreciate her low-budget recipes for inspiration. Filling, fun, and colorful. 

6. Cheap Lazy Vegan (Rose) 

10-50 minutes of vegan Asian meals. After noticing how Asian cuisine is greatly meat-based, Rose started her channel to breathe a vegan twist on Asian cuisine. She is comfortable with the camera, often telling viewers about her day and what she has been up to, and her self-hyping attitude makes her charming to watch. She is also known for her vegan mukbangs: massive portions of food eaten at once. Like her screen name suggests, her low-budget and lazy recipes are perfect for students during the quarantine. 

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