Keeping your pantry stocked with essential items is always a good idea because with the right ingredients you can whip a delicious meal together without a trip to the grocery store. Pantry staples are also vital in unexpected situations so make sure your pantry is fully stocked all year round so you are prepared if a situation arises. Follow along as we round up the top pantry staples everyone should have on hand to keep a well-stocked kitchen.
Once you’ve stocked your pantry, check out these easy pantry meals you can make in a hurry!
Oil is an excellent ingredient to keep stocked in your pantry. We recommend stocking up on olive oil, vegetable oil, and coconut oil.
Not only can all of these types of oils be used in cooking and baking but they can also be used to make homemade salad dressings and condiments like mayonnaise. Additionally, oils can be used for homemade beauty products such as makeup remover, skin moisturizer and more!
The top vinegar varieties we recommend you keep in your pantry are; rice wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, and balsamic vinegar. Rice wine vinegar is used in a lot of Asian cooking and really helps to provide that authentic flavor. Whereas apple cider vinegar is an excellent ingredient for homemade salad dressing and as a bonus, it boasts many health benefits.
Further, white vinegar is used in cooking and baking but also in homemade cleaning products and even to get rid of weeds around your home! Finally, balsamic vinegar is another great ingredient to have on hand to add a punch of flavor to your dish and it can also be incorporated into a homemade salad dressings.
Beans are a great source of protein and full of other essential nutrients. Plus you can purchase beans in either dry form or in a can which means they will last a long time.
Beans are also very versatile as they can be used as a meat substitute, can be used to make snacks like hummus, and can be used in soups and chili. Additionally, even varieties like black beans can be incorporated into baking. As you can see there is no shortage of ways to add beans into your everyday diet which makes them a vital ingredient to stock up on!
Spices and herbs are the important ingredients that bring your dishes to life. With this in mind, we highly recommend that you keep a generous variety on hand!
With that, we recommend you stock up on salt, pepper, cinnamon, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, ground ginger, cumin, smoked paprika, dried oregano, dried rosemary, dried thyme as well as any other spices and herbs you enjoy. This basic list can be used in countless recipes for cooking and baking.
Flour is an essential ingredient in making homemade bread, pizza dough, pasta, can be added to help thicken soups and sauces, and can be used to make delicious desserts like cake and cookies. At the very least, it would be best to keep all-purpose flour on hand.
That said, there are many other varieties you can choose from such as whole wheat flour, gluten-free flour and more. Ultimately, choose a flour that is best suited for your baking/cooking needs and based on your dietary restrictions.
Sweeteners such as granulated sugar and brown sugar are essential ingredients to keep stocked in your pantry. Not only can these be added to hot beverages and meals but they’re essential for baking too. But those aren’t the only types of sweeteners you should have on hand.
Other great additions are corn syrup, maple syrup, and honey. In fact, honey never expires! Even when it crystalizes all you have to do is heat it in the microwave to make it liquid again. But as always assess the needs of your household and stock up on sweeteners you and your family normally enjoy.
If you do a lot of baking it may be wise to stock up on other essential baking ingredients. We recommend that you keep baking soda, baking powder, vanilla extract, and yeast on hand.
Other great ingredients that can be stored in the pantry and used for baking are mixed nuts, chocolate chips, and sprinkles.
If you’re an avid coffee or tea drinker then you should definitely keep your pantry stock with your favorite varieties. But coffee and tea aren’t the only beverages you should keep on hand.
You may want to consider also stocking up on bottled water, as well as real fruit juices. Bottled beverages are great for on-the-go and great for emergency situations which makes them an essential item to keep on hand. Alternatively, if you want to save the plastic you can always keep reusable water bottles stocked in your pantry too.
When possible, it’s best to consume fresh fruits and vegetables because not only is the flavor often richer, but you will also obtain the most nutrients from the fresh varieties. That said, sometimes you need to lean on canned fruits and vegetables, especially when you can’t make it to the store.
Considering canned goods can last for a long time, be sure to stock up on your favorites. Some great ideas would be canned peaches, pineapple, corn, beans, carrots and whatever else you enjoy.
Much like fresh vegetables, enjoying fresh protein may be best but there are circumstances when you’ll need or want to rely on canned meat. In that case, we recommend stocking up on canned tuna, chicken, fish, and any other proteins you enjoy.
These canned meats can be used in sandwiches, wraps, incorporated into cooking, added to salads and ultimately can be enjoyed straight out of the can!
Soup stock is available in cans, cartons, or in bouillon cubes and is a great ingredient to keep stocked in your pantry. It can be used to make homemade soup, added to sauces and added into a variety of other dishes too. Additionally, you can even enjoy broth on its own if you’re feeling unwell.
Be sure to stock up on chicken, beef, and/or vegetable broth. Each type of stock will provide a unique flavor to your cooking.
Rice is a staple in most people’s home and that’s why keeping it stocked in your pantry is always a great idea! There are so many varieties to choose from, so be sure to stock up on the type you and your family like best!
Other grains to consider are quinoa, couscous, and oatmeal. Grains can often be the foundation of a great meal. Need to get inspired? Check out these Instant Pot rice dishes that are sure to please the whole family!
Much like rice, pasta is another excellent ingredient to keep stocked in your pantry. Pasta comes in many shapes and forms which can make cooking fun!
Additionally, pasta is also available in whole wheat and gluten-free varieties as well as many other varieties too. Once again simply choose the types of pasta you and your family enjoy and that fit in with your dietary restrictions.
Much like spices, sauces and condiments can really add a depth of flavor to many meals. Start with your basics and make sure your pantry is stocked with ketchup, mustard, relish, soy sauce, pasta sauce, and pizza sauce.
Once you cover the basics then you can start adding more sauces and condiments you think you and your family may want to use. Some great ideas are assorted salad dressings, sweet chili sauce, plum sauce, and any other sauces you enjoy.
Everyone needs snacks so be sure to stock your pantry with your favorites. We highly recommend stocking up on crackers, granola bars, nut butter, mixed nuts, and popcorn.
Granola bars are great to tide you over between meals, can serve as an easy breakfast and can be brought with you on the go. Crackers are also great for snacking but they also pair well with soup and considering they often have a bland flavor, you can eat them when you feel unwell. Ultimately, be sure to stock up on snacks that you and your family enjoy!
Now that you have a basic checklist of ingredients you should stock up in your pantry, it’s time to get organized! For starters, you can utilize labels, install additional shelving to create more storage or utilize a Lazy Susan. There are endless ways to keep your pantry organized and functioning as it should.
For more ideas check out these life-changing ways to organize your pantry! If you need to organize on a budget you may enjoy these genius ways to organize your pantry using dollar store items! Get creative and have fun with it.