Creating a recipe with what you have on hand is the idea here, from our favorite pantry recipes. We’re also sharing some of our basic pantry items to keep on hand. You’ll love this Easy Pantry Recipes and Guide.
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As I sit and write this, our world isn’t the same as it was one month ago. With what is going on right now, a lot of us are having a very hard time finding groceries.
With that hard time, I thought that it was more important than ever to create a list of what we keep stocked in our pantry and fridge at all times.
As many of us are having to survive from our pantry, for the time being. It’s important to have it stocked with items that you can create full meals from at any time.
We go grocery shopping every two weeks, and these items are things that I always make sure that we have in stock. Of course our shopping looks a bit different these days.
I usually keep a small grocery list on my fridge so that if we are running low, or run out of something, I can jot it down.
I have created a Pantry Guide for dry goods, as well as what we keep in our fridge and freezer.
Some items that I’ve included on the fresh items list, don’t last very long in the fridge, however, I freeze a few of these a few days after I have bought them, if I see that I’m not going to be using them.
I try and use up my freshest produce that doesn’t have a long life first, but sometimes my family decides that they don’t want to eat X and request Y instead.
Vegetables that freeze well without blanching:
- Spinach – this can be easily tossed into the freezer, and pulled out for smoothies, soups, stews, omelets, meatballs, and to make cream spinach.
- Broccoli Florets – Toss these into the freezer and pull them out when ready to use. I like roasting broccoli florets, sauteing them, or using them in my sheet pan meals.
What does blanching a vegetable mean?
You drop clean fresh vegetables into boiling water for 2 to 5 minutes (until they are tender), remove, and place quickly into an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
What vegetables should I blanch before freezing?
- Brussels Sprouts
- Green Beans
We usually go through fruit pretty quick around here, but I find that there are always a couple of bananas that usually hang out on the counter longer than they should.
When this happens, I just peel it, chop it in half, and place in the freezer. They are perfect in smoothies!
These are some of the most essential items that I always have on hand. If you go into my cabinets right now, this is what you’ll find:
- Oils – Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Canola Oil
- Canned Beans
- Canned Soups
- Canned Tomatoes (diced, stewed and sauce)
- Canned Tuna
- Pasta Sauce
- Nut Butters
- Hot Sauce
- Vinegars – White Vinegar, Balsamic and Apple Cider Vinegar
- Sweeteners – Sugar (white and brown), Maple Syrup, Honey and Agave
- Seasonings – Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Italian Seasoning and Cinnamon
Fresh and Frozen Basics
- Frozen Veggies – Broccoli Florets, Green Beans, Peas & Carrots
- Frozen Fruit – Mixed Berries and Bananas
- Ground Beef – Keep in freezer
- Bacon – Keep in freezer
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts – Keep in freezer
- Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes
- Bell Peppers
- Smoked Sausage – Keep in freezer
- Cream Cheese
- Sour Cream or Plain Greek Yogurt
We have been using Butcher Box since January to order all of our meats from. The quality is superb, and it’s been a wonderful way to keep us stocked on meat, when our grocery stores have been out. I find the prices are equivalent to Whole Foods. This may seem pricier to some, but the quality can’t be beat.
I’ve created a printable PDF with a larger list of pantry basics and fresh essentials for y’all. It’s a very large list, and a great place to start when creating a stock pile of food, that can create so many different meals.
To see a larger version, download, or print it…
Just in case you find yourself in a pinch, I’ve also created a list of Ingredient Substitutions that you may run across while baking or mixing up a recipe or two.
To see a larger version, download, or print it…
When thinking about the pantry and foods, I often think of meals that I can batch cook and freeze for later. With just our family of 3, when I make larger meals, I like to freeze half for another night.
What meals are good for freezing?
- Pot Pies
You want to make sure that you allow the hot food to completely cool before placing in the freezer.
You also want to make sure you choose the correct container to freeze your meal in.
I like to cook my casseroles in pans that are already freezer safe. This makes it easy to cool in the pan, and place right into the freezer.
If you have sauces or extra broth, you can simply freeze those in mason jars. Just don’t fill them all the way to the top! The liquid needs room to expand.
The best way, and the way that I use often is thawing whatever it may be in the fridge overnight.
There are a few things that you can reheat straight from frozen, like soups. You can run warm water over the container the soup is in, until it releases from the sides. Place the frozen soup into a pot, and heat on low to medium heat until it thaws completely. Once thawed, bring the soup up to a boil, before serving.
To quickly defrost meat, you can place into a sink full of cold water, in their original packaging. This takes about 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the meat. Do not use anything but cold water!
Here are some of our favorite recipes that you will find in most of our monthly dinner rotations. These meals were all made using ingredients listed above, and from our pantry guide.
- Green Citrus Smoothie
- Fluffy No Knead Buttermilk Biscuits
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins
- Quick & Easy No Rise Cinnamon Rolls
- Coffee Cake Muffins
- Cinnamon Crumble Banana Bread
Sheet Pan Meals:
- Sheet Pan Sausage Sweet Potato and Apple
- Sheet Pan Sausage, Asparagus and Sweet Potato
- One Pan Chicken and Broccoli
- One Pan Ranch Seasoned Sausage, Green Beans and Potato
- One Pan Crispy Flounder and Vegetables
Meals using Minimal Ingredients:
- Korean Ground Beef
- Taco Pasta
- One Pan Taco Pie
- Honey Mustard Chicken and Vegetables
- One Pan Buttermilk and Herb Pork Chop and Vegetables
- Baked French Fries in the Oven
- The Best Southern Corn Bread
- Perfect Mexican Rice
- Orange Maple Roasted Carrots
I hope that y’all have found this post helpful! If you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them. 🙂