Pantry Staples


I am a creature of habit.  When I look for new recipes to make, I typically find myself making note of recipes that are very similar to dishes I have made in the past.  I can’t tell you how many different oil based pasta dishes I have dog-eared in my food magazines.  I mean, how many different ways can you make a sauce with olive oil, tomatoes, and garlic?

This got me thinking…what are my pantry, refrigerator, and freezer staples?  What do I keep on hand so, at a moments notice, I can whip up something quick and easy for dinner without having to go to the store.  One of my favorite pantry staple recipes is my Dad’s Spaghetti.  Below, you’ll find my list of must haves:

Olive oil
Peanut butter
Canned diced tomatoes
Sundried tomatoes
Garlic or garlic paste (Trader Joe’s has a great garlic paste!)
Balsamic vinegar
Soy sauce
Chili garlic paste
Chicken/beef broth
Pasta sauce
Loaves of bread
Canned tomato soup (my favorite is Progresso High Fiber Tomato)
Assorted mustards (yellow, Dijon, spicy brown, Chinese hot, honey)
Sesame oil
Apple cider vinegar
Bread crumbs
Instant potatoes (Idahoan Loaded Baked Potatoes are our favorite)
Baking products including flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, yeast, cornstarch, salt, brown & powdered sugars, and chocolate chips
Lawry’s 30 minute marinades (Kroger’s version of this is pretty good too)
Canned Corn (Thanks, Gretchen!)
Canned Black Beans (Thanks, Gretchen!)

Parmesan cheese
Assorted shredded cheese (cheddar/mozzarella)
American cheese slices
Beer & Wine  (I like to buy individual bottles of red and white wine for cooking)
Proscuitto and/or bacon
Flavored light cream cheese (Philadelphia Light Chive & Onion cream cheese is phenomenal on top of a baked potato)

Boneless skinless chicken breasts and thighs
Pork roast
Ground beef
Veggies (corn is a favorite side dish of ours)
IQF* Rolls and Breads
IQF Fruits
Lean Cuisines…for those nights where I just can’t bear to chop a single thing!
Ice Cream…who needs a reason for this?
Filled pastas (ex: Buitoni Chicken & Proscuitto Tortellini)

Italian Seasoning
Garlic powder
Onion powder
Smoked Paprika
Dorothy Lane Market Steak Seasoning**

*IQF=Individual Quick Frozen
**For those of you who are unfamiliar, Dorothy Lane Market is a gourmet grocery store in Dayton.  They have a steak rub that is to die for!  I put it on everything from steaks to chicken to roasted veggies to scrambled eggs.  It is just a yummy mix of spices that adds a little pop of flavor to any dish.  It is heavily salted, however, so if you use it, use it sparingly.

As I said above, I like having a plethora of items at home in case I don’t want to stop at the store after work.  I also try to keep frozen homemade casseroles and soups in my freezer at all times so I can thaw something quickly.

Question:  What go to items do you keep in your house that I didn’t mention above?
New items I forgot will be included above in red!


4 thoughts on “Pantry Staples

  1. I love your list!! Your tastes are similar to mine. I always have Taco Seasoning and Onion soup mix; as well as canned black beans and corn and tortillas.

    • Oh yes! Canned black beans and corn are a must! I forgot them. Thanks for the reminder! I’ll update my post!

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