Pantry stock items! Woohoo!
Wait…like, who would seriously care about what’s in the pantry, or even the fridge and freezer like I wrote about last week?
Well, maybe you don’t care about it now, but if you’re looking to save money, start cooking more meals from home or want to lose some weight, then having a stock of standard ingredients will become really important. After all, planning is the key to achieving just about anything, so with cooking its no different.
So knowing what you have on hand, and making sure you top them up often, will make the most difference to you and your abilities in the kitchen.
Don’t believe me?
Well, how can you cook a lovely lasagna when your girlfriends come over if you forgot to stock up on tins of diced tomatoes? And how are you going to make that lovely cinnamon tea cake when Grandma pops in if you haven’t stocked up on the flour?
In the advent that you don’t want to serve Grandma cinnamon sugar on toast then stocking up on the pantry items could be a life saver – or at least a reputation saver anyway.
Now do you think you might start caring about what’s in the pantry?
Yep, I thought so.
So what do you have in yours currently? And what do you think should be in there all the time?
Below I’ve listed what I have in my pantry and I’m hoping it’ll give you a few ideas for what you might like to keep in the pantry, or what you might need to go get from the supermarket tomorrow so you can have a fully stocked kitchen.
Basic stock items for the pantry
- Flour – plain and self raising.
- Beans, chickpeas and lentils – dried or tinned, whichever works better for you.
- Rice – white and brown, or even arborio (for making risotto).
- Lemon juice – or lime – unless you always keep fresh lemons and limes.
- Spices – cinnamon, cumin, paprika, curry powder, turmeric, ground ginger, etc. See post for more ideas.
- Dried herbs – basil, parsley, oregano, bay leaves, rosemary, etc.
- Tins of diced tomatoes.
- Tomato paste.
- Olive oil – good oil for dressings plus regular olive oil for cooking.
- Vegetable oil – like canola or sunflower oil (use it for deep frying as it works better than olive oil).
- Vinegar – white, balsamic or a flavoured one for dressings.
- Pasta – spaghetti, penne and gnocchi for dinner; macaroni or orzo for adding to soups.
- Other grains – rolled oats, barley, spelt flour/pasta/flakes, couscous, quinoa, freekah.
- Tins of fruit – pineapple, peaches, cherries, apples (great for snacks or baking).
- Tinned tuna and salmon – plain (for adding to meals) and flavoured (for on sandwiches).
- Tins of vegetables – such as corn, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, jalapenos or pickles, etc.
- Baking items – like bicarb soda, baking powder, desiccated coconut, icing sugar and food dye.
- Spreads – honey, peanut butter, vegemite.
- Stock – either cartons of liquid stock or tins/cubes of stock powder.
- Sauces – tomato, BBQ, soy, hoisin, worcestershire, etc.
- Bottles – of pasta sauce, stir-fry sauce, juice and soft drink, etc.
- Nuts – pistachios, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, almonds, peanuts, or whatever you like to eat.
- Snacks – chips, biscuits, crackers, etc.
Even though thinking about whats in your pantry might be a boring topic, you’ve gotta see that with a stocked pantry you can make almost any meal at any time of the day or night.
Need a cake? Great! Cause now you’ve got flour, sugar, coconut, fruit and icing sugar all ready to go.
Need dinner for the extended family who didn’t tell you they were coming over? Great! Cause you’ve got stir fry sauce and rice to go with the portioned packets of chicken in the freezer.
Need to make dinner stretch a bit further on a budget? Great! Cause you’ve got plenty of beans and lentils to add to those packets of portioned mince in the freezer and those frozen vegetables. You can make any basic meal bigger and healthier now you’ve got extra healthy ingredients squirreled away in the cupboard.
Having a well stocked kitchen means you are better prepared to take on life’s challenges, but still get a healthy meal, often made from scratch, on the table each night.
Isn’t that worth at least thinking about??