Idahoan Potatoes is offering $5,000 to the best dorm-room potato chef in the country. The contest, which began on March 23 and will close on May 22, will also give the grand-prize winner a year’s supply of Idahoan Potatoes.

To enter, any full-time student in good academic standing must send in their original recipe idea using at least one of Idahoan’s products.

“We know there are dozens of college culinarians out there — students who put their own creative twists on dorm room cooking,” said Dan Fitzgerald, marketing director at Idahoan Foods. “Our challenge gives them an opportunity to showcase their favorite side dishes, appetizers and entrees.”

There will also be a runner-up prize of $1,000 and an honorable mention prize of $500. Both the runner-up and the honorable mention prize winners will also receive a six-month supply of Idahoan mashed potatoes.
The cash prizes will be in the form of savings bonds. The catch with these bonds is that they cannot be cashed out for the full amount until they reach maturity. Idahoan ‘s public relations representative, Madhu Katta, said that the company has not decided which type of savings bond will be awarded, but it will most likely be a bond that reaches maturity after collecting interest for 30 years. A savings bond is very much like a loan from citizens to the federal government.

The rules for entries are quite strict and detailed, so be sure to read the official rule book, which is available at But don’t worry — it’s only 6 pages long.

Entries will be judged based upon the use of Idahoan’s products and originality (40 percent), flavor (40 percent), name (10 percent) and presentation (10 percent) of the recipe.