8 ‘mug-tastic’ ways to use a mug

That’s right, a mug. A seemingly normal daily item traditionally used for hot beverages will transform before your eyes into a number of surprisingly useful “make-do” items… mug-procrastination here I come…

1)      A make-do container for food – no clean bowls or a hoard of mugs growing off the mug tree next to the snack cupboard? From grapes to cereal or crisps, mugs are great for transporting your snacks from the kitchen to your room without spilling crumbs. Mugs have handles which are way more convenient to carry than a bowl. It also controls portion sizes as a mug stores less than a bowl.


2)      Microwave mug cake – this was a big craze in sixth form and I have no idea why it isn’t a big thing now. With our crazy April snowy weather, warm yourself up with hot chocolate cake without having to brave the cold to Sainsburys! To do this, find a microwaveable mug and add 4 tablespoons of self -raising flour, 4 tablespoons of caster sugar and 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder (I normally just use hot chocolate powder). Crack one egg into the mug and mix with the dry ingredients. Then add 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil and a few drops of vanilla essence. Once fully mixed, pop it in the microwave for 4-5 minutes until it has risen to the top and is firm to touch! Yum!

3)      Pens/make-up brushes pot – I am the proud owner of 5 mugs and 3 of them are used as pretty containers in my room, separating my beloved felt tips, random eyeliners/mascaras/eye shadow brushes and other pens.

4)      Speaker – this mug-adventure will be slightly subjective on what type of phone (or other music device you have) and mug you have but sometimes a phone can fit perfectly into a clean, dry mug (an iPhone 4s/5 for example). Putting your phone speaker side down first into a mug will amplify your music. If you’re feeling adventurous/or in need of procrastination you can try turning different types of mugs/cups into speakers. Ceramic mugs offer a completely different effect to a polystyrene cup!

5)      Measuring jug – didn’t quite envision having the cookery skills/motivation to actually require measuring any liquid when you first went kitchen shopping in first year? The average mug in my current student household is 270ml. If your recipe is flexible, you can use a mug to get the general amount required and top up as required, for example when making carbonara sauce. However, if you’re following a precise recipe such as cake, you might want to invest in a proper measuring jug.

6)      Jelly mould – for the times when you really crave jelly but don’t own those super cool jelly moulds that your mum has, but want to separate jelly into individual portions – mug jelly is the way to go. (If you’re wanting slightly smaller portions then why not try silicon/waxed cupcake cases?)

7)      Pot noodle holder – when you prepare a pot noodle and the pot is too hot to hold, place the whole pot noodle cup in a mug and voila – a portable solution to transporting your pot noodle snack without burning your hands.

8)      Plant/herb garden – fancy decorating your room or cheering up the student atmosphere (kind of) at home? Use old mugs to plant some small flowers or herbs. Again, due to the handles they are easy to transport as required and also reasonably sturdy on your windowsills!

Please feel free to share any other mug-tastic ideas for using a mug that you may have!

(Note: No mugs were hurt in this mug-procrastinating adventure!)

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