Preston & Steve®

Weekdays 5:30am - 10:30am

Just recently we were introduced to an age old prison meal called Chi Chi. It’s a mixture of ingredients available in the prison commissary, usually cooked in the cell using a manufactured heating element.

The base of each recipe begins with Ramen Noodles (cost: 28¢). Chips like Cheetos ($1.23) or Doritos (56¢) are added to create a cheese sauce and various packaged meats for protein ($1.53 – $2.23).  This concoction may not sound appetizing, but it’s a welcomed break from the bland meal served in the chow hall.

Of course we have to try it ourselves! Friday morning (2/24) we will have Professional Chi Chi Makers in studio cooking up the recipes they had months/years to perfect. Joining us on the judging panel are’s Food Editor, Michael Klein, Nicholas Elmi Chef-Owner at Laurel, and one unnamed Chi Chi Professional.

Wanna try it for dinner tonight? You may already have the ingredients in your kitchen. Here is a basic recipe from the Prison section of The Official Ramen Homepage:  

  • 2 packs of ramen noodles
  • 1/3 bottle of jalapeno squeeze cheese
  • 1 summer sausage
  • 1 Slim Jim
  • 1 can of chili
  • 1 small garbage bag

Crush the noodles while they are still in the package. Microwave bowl of water for 2 minutes, then add both Ramen packages and let sit. Chop or dice the summer sausage and Slim Jim, then heat the chili. Once the Ramen has fully expanded (about 10 mins), drain water and dump cooked noodles into the garbage bag. Add 1 flavor pack and 1/3 bottle of jalapeno cheese. Knead the bag to mix. Add the meat then knead again till ingredients are evenly distributed. Add the heated chili and knead until desired consistency. *Should be eaten with a spork for the authentic prison experience.


Get creative: add pickles for crunch or try peanut butter, hot sauce & canned chicken to create a pad thai variation.

  • Ramen (any flavor) · 1 can of tuna · 1 slice of american cheese · jalapenos
  • Texas Beef Ramen · 1/2 can of Coke · 1 pack salted peanuts
  • Ramen (no flavor) · 1/2 can chicken · cheddar cheese spread · honey · orange
  • Ramen · 2 packets mayo · 1 packet mackerel in oil · 1 hard boiled egg

For a full shopping list visit the Department of Corrections Commissary Page.