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What "pantry" items do you have on hand at all times?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I just started really cooking for our family and have discovered when looking at recipes that I rarely have seemingly basic items on hand. My big goal for 2013 is to cook from scratch using only unprocessed foods at home. To do that I know I need a stocked pantry.

So what items do you try to always have on hand in the pantry, fridge & freezer? Please include spices. We do eat meat and mostly eat American style foods though I would like to start incorporating some authentic Asian and Hispanic foods.

post #2 of 10

Canned tomatoes , pasta , vegetable bouillon cubes , dried herbs such as parsley , basil , dill , thyme , oregano , also paprika , black pepper , garlic powder , canned beans and lentils , rice ( brown and white ) , roasted bell peppers , flour tortillas , different flours , eggs , grated cheese , ...

post #3 of 10

Various canned tomato products (paste, diced, stewed, sauce), canned cannellini and pinto beans, canned diced green chilies, canned artichokes, at least two kinds of dried pasta, egg noodles, brown rice, lentils, quinoa, peanut butter, flax seed, organic instant oatmeal, steel cut oats, boullion cubes and soup bases, olive oil, vegetable oil, apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, white and regular balsamic vinegar, and usually a jar of spaghetti sauce.


Spices:  kosher or sea salt, black pepper, an organic all-seasoning blend, garlic powder, dried parsley, dill, Greek oregano, bay leaves, tarragon, cumin, dry mustard, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and a citrus pepper blend.


Baking products:  flour, sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, vanilla, chocolate chips, honey,

post #4 of 10

i AM doing what you are setting out to do :)


and let me tell you my pantry is NOT stuffed or full. yes i do have dried stuff like grains and beans (we are vegans/vegetarians), some nuts and lots and lots of different types of spices and herbs. i live in a very diverse part of the country so i have hispanic, chinese, japanese, indian, arabian spices. in fact i have a HUGE collection of spices. perhaps 70 different kinds or more. i also have about 10 different kinds of vinegar. we do have some flour and a really good local bakery nearby so we dont make our own bread. we ocassionally make pancakes. dd is not really fond of them. 


i prefer going to our local farmers market twice a week to buy veggies. or our local small ethnic grocery stores that is sorta like a farmers market - getting mostly produce and fruit from around the city. i prefer this way as it tends to cut down on food waste (you know that veggie you meant to cook but didnt and now it ends up in the compost pile). 


i never look up recipes unless i am cooking for a specific reason like tg or christmas or any special reason to cook. i would never have all ingredients required. i enjoy experimenting. i just discovered a new spice asofetida and let me tell you it was delicious with split peas. 

post #5 of 10

In the pantry: canned fish and natural cured olives, dried seaweed, natural potato chips, dried fruit

Frig: eggs, cream, butter, cheese, herbs

Freezer: all different kinds of meat, homemade soup


edible clay

condiments and spices

post #6 of 10

flour, corn meal, white sugar, honey, brown sugar, vanilla extract, baking soda, cocoa powder, baking powder, cornstarch, shortening, vinegar, olive oil, peanut oil, oatmeal, canned tomatoes, dried beans, lentils, rice, pasta, canned beans, lemon juice, lime juice, soy sauce, garlic, potatoes, onions, milk, butter, cheese, eggs, sea salt, cumin, black pepper, rosemary, basil, oregano, thyme, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, bay leaves, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, frozen peas, frozen carrots, frozen blueberries, plain yogurt, spicy brown mustard, salsa, popcorn, nuts, peanut butter


I don't stock up on meats but usually have some chicken breasts in the freezer. I have a lot of spices, 3 or 4 kinds of flour, and 3 or 4 kinds of vinegar. I acquired things as we needed them so didn't list everything as they may not be basic. I do not make my own pasta and we frequently buy bread.

post #7 of 10

cinnamon, ginger, cumin, paprika, garlc, coriander, nutmeg, pepper, chili, sea salt, vanilla, seaweed, seasame seed, miso, vinegar, 

honey, popcorn kernals, olives, olive oil, canola oil, tuna fish cans, black beans, pinto beans, mustard, peanut butter, soy sauce, balsamic

post #8 of 10

Freezer I always have : 

- ground meat from a local farmer , that raises organic cattle , we are not big meat eaters and I am cutting down more and more , but for some meals , I like to keep it on hand 

- lots of different frozen vegetables 

- frozen fruits and berries , it is quite cold here , and produce gets expensive in the winter , so I always keep that stocked-up

- frozen falafel , which we all love , especially my DD2 as a quick lunch snack

- grated cheese , I usually buy cheese in bulk , then grate it with my kitchen machine and freeze in portions , much cheaper

- some homemade vegetable stock and also tomato sauce , cooked in big batches , then divided in portions and frozen 

- frozen herbs , especially parsley , which we love on almost everything


And in my fridge 

- yoghurt , plain for me and flavored for the kids 

- cheese 

- either butter or vegetable spread 

- natural fruit juices 

- silken tofu for qhick smoothies 

- soy sauce , mustard , ketchup , 


We used to have a lot more cereal in the house , but I managed to wean the kids of them a bit , which I am very happy about , now it´s mostly home-made granola or muesli

 And of course spices and herbs , vanilla , ginger , dried garlic powder , different seasoning mixes , like 5-pepper-mix , garam masala , curry powder , italian seasoning , also a lovely blend of salad herbs that I have mixed and perfected over time and that I keep stocked up now for quick salad dressings 

post #9 of 10

Do you have an Indian or Pakistani grocer nearby? We always buy bulk rice and dal (lentils) very, very cheaply at our local place and they're a staple in our house. Rice, beans, a handful of spices, and whatever veggies are on hand (fresh, frozen, jarred) are on our menu several times a week.

post #10 of 10

i always buy bulk






spices......curry,pepper,chilli,basil ,baking sodaetc

rice wine red wine,apple cider vinegar


sesame oil




homemade chicken stock

canned tomatos

canned black olives

fresh herbs for the refrigerator-ginger celery.carrots,onion garlic cabbage

oh and yougurt


now i can make chicken noodle soup,cookies, pizza,chow mein noodles,pancakes,biscuits..oh my im making myself hungry lol

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