5 Items Always in My Pantry

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5 Essentials – Kitchen Pantry

My pantry changes with whatever I’m going to make that week for food. However, I do have a few staples that always have a spot in my pantry. Sometimes you don’t have a huge budget or a giant walk in pantry (hello I live in a townhouse with limited storage) but still need a well stocked pantry.  I’ll be impressed if you can make all 5 of these things into one edible meal. This won’t include spices.

These are essentials that you should replace as soon as you use. Nothing worse than opening your pantry and realizing you’re out of coconut milk.

Dried Pasta

Whether this is a traditional Italian pasta like penne or something like udon noodles from Japan. This is an easy, shelf stable way to bulk up any veggies or proteins you’re looking to cook. I usually have both penne and udon noodles for quick meal prep options but if you have to, you can pick just one.

Hot Sauce

I have at least 4 different types of hot sauce in the pantry at all times. But my favorite is sriracha because it is good on tacos, eggs and a lot of asian dishes. It works well to add a little heat and flavor at the same time but not melt off your face. I also keep hot sauce at work just in case. Wouldn’t want to be stuck somewhere without hot sauce nearby.

Pancake Mix

Another really easy meal for breakfast, lunch or dinner. I like Kodiak Cakes because I only have to add water to make them. You can easily add milk or eggs to bulk up the protein but seeing as I don’t always have milk, this is a good substitute. Plus they are made with good ingredients like whole wheat flour and have 10+ grams of protein before you add eggs or milk. Add whatever fruit you have and you’ve got an epic Instagram worthy meal. I use them sometimes for my raspberry, chocolate and mascarpone pancakes sometimes too. We like Kodiak cakes buttermilk or dark chocolate pancakes.

Side view of pancakes with mascarpone, chocolate chips and raspberries

Coconut Milk

I’m not sure about you, but we don’t drink a lot of milk. So I only buy it for specific purposes (like spiked hot chocolate or cereal cravings). This is an easy substitute for traditional dairy milk and is shelf stable. I use it to make things creamier or in thai yellow curry with chicken. 

BBQ Sauce/Salad Dressing/Buffalo Sauce

I always have at least one full bottle of a pre-made sauce/dressing. Yes, you can probably make tastier salad dressing from scratch or a custom BBQ sauce but I don’t always have the time, energy or ingredients. Therefore, if you always have a back up sauce you can marinate pretty much any protein. I mean you have to have protein to marinate. But I’ve put buffalo sauce on chickpeas before, made BBQ shrimp or Greek dressing tofu. Pick a favorite brand and always keep it in the pantry. If you open it, buy a new one. Because you might not have enough in the fridge.

Did I leave something out?

I’m always curious what others keep in their pantries! Leave me a comment with your “must have stocked” items below.

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