Overwhelmed by canned goods but still feel like you have nothing in your pantry? Here are six pantry staples to keep on your shelves!
Having a well-stocked pantry is essential to making your meals easier and healthier. You won’t have to rely on processed foods, which are usually high in sugar and fat. A fully stocked pantry will also help you save money by purchasing ingredients in bulk. If you want the best groceries for your family, then this blog post has six things that should be in your pantry at all times!
Must-Have Pantry Staples to Add to Your Grocery List
Stocking up on a variety of rice is a must. Brown, white, and jasmine are just some of the types that you should have in your pantry.
Jasmine rice will be perfect for dishes like fried rice or chicken and vegetables while brown rice can go great with beef stir fry or Mexican casserole.
White rice is versatile enough to use in any dish but it’s also really helpful if dinner time rolls around and all you want is something simple!
Beans are a great source of protein and they’re also inexpensive. You should always have a variety of beans in your pantry, some examples are black beans, kidney beans, and pinto beans. Not only do they all provide protein but they also offer other nutrients as well!
Keep a selection of dried beans as well as canned ones. They will keep for months when stored properly.
Not only will having beans available make meal planning easier, but they are staples for “beefing” up a dish and being able to create more servings from one meal.
- Black Beans: high in iron and omega-three fats
- Kidney Beans: great for vegetarians because they’re packed with fiber
- Pinto Beans: low fat so if you’re on any special diet or trying to lose weight these would be perfect for you
My kids love pasta, so I always keep it on hand. It’s inexpensive and when used in a dish such as spaghetti with meat sauce, you can’t really go wrong!
- Spaghetti: great for hearty pasta dishes or if you’re craving something comforting like macaroni and cheese
- Egg Noodles: perfect for soup (hello, chicken soup!) and Asian cuisine
- Rice noodles: they look fancier than regular white rice but have the same versatility! You can use them in soups, stir fry, or even ramen-style noodle bowls. Plus they stay nice and crunchy so your kids will love them too.
4. Olive Oil
I love using extra virgin olive oil sparingly when I cook because it’s a really healthy product that is loaded with flavor! You can use it to replace butter, margarine, or fats in order to cut down the fat content of your meals by about 30%.
- For cooking: think pasta, sauces, stir fry…pretty much anything you want to make taste delicious! Plus it can help cut down on the fat content of your meals by replacing butter or other fats with olive oil for sautéing/pan-frying.
- As a finishing touch: drizzle it over cooked brown rice (leftovers are great!), top off tomato sauce dishes like spaghetti bolognese, or use as dipping condiments with breadsticks at dinner time. I love adding fresh ground pepper and crushed garlic cloves because they bring out the best flavors.
5. Honey or Maple Syrup
Use honey or maple syrup for sweetening things up a bit in cooking and baking recipes!
I don’t like using artificial sweeteners so I always rely on either honey or maple syrup for sweetening desserts and baking recipes.
Honey is a great alternative to sugar because it has natural sugars that help with texture and caramelization in baking recipes.
Maple syrup, on the other hand, brings out a nice maple flavor which I like for pancakes or waffles! It also has fewer calories compared to honey since it’s not as sweet.
6. Soy Sauce, Red Wine Vinegar, Apple Cider Vinegar, and Sriracha (for adding flavor to dishes without using salt or sugar!)
Flavor is key when it comes to cooking. I like to use soy sauce, red wine vinegar, and Sriracha for adding flavor without using a lot of salt or sugar!
-It’s important not only to have these ingredients on hand but also dried herbs and spices such as garlic powder, cumin, and onion powder that will help round out flavors with very little effort.
-Stock up on condiments such as ketchup or mayonnaise so you always have them on hand when you want to make burgers at home.
-Lastly, try shopping in the ethnic food aisles for your spices and flavor boosters.
Pantry Staples Matter
In the end, it’s not about how much variety you have in your pantry. It’s about having 6 essential items that will make cooking a lot easier. What are your favorite pantry staples? Share them with us!
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