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How to stock and use your pantry

Written by Allie Rene Lindke, MS/DI student | Edited by Laurel Sanville, MS, RDN, LD
Table

Have you ever wanted to open your pantry door and be able to make a healthy, family approved meal from the ingredients you have on hand?

Building your pantry up with staple ingredients can give you the freedom to make meals using only the ingredients you already have!

The following lists of ingredients can be used to make many different meals in minutes. Not all of the ingredients need to be purchased at once, but with time, your well thought out pantry will help you meet your goal!

Jump to Pantry Sections Jump to Recipe Ideas
  1. Grains, Rice, & Pasta
  2. Canned & Jarred
  3. Oils, Sauces, & Vinegars
  4. Refrigerated/ Frozen
  5. Herbs & Spices
  6. Dried Foods 
  1. Berry Oatmeal
  2. Tuna Salad
  3. Topped Crackers
  4. Chicken Stir-Fry
  5. Smoothie
  6. Veggie & Lentil Soup
  7. Traditional Pasta
  8. Trail Mix
  9. Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad
  10. Spicy Frittata
  11. White Chicken Chili
  12. Burrito Bowl

Must-Haves for Your Pantry

 

Grains, Rice, & Pasta

  • Brown Rice
  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • Rice Cakes
  • Whole Grain Bread
  • Whole Grain Cereal (look for less than 6 grams of sugar per serving)
  • Whole Grain Crackers
  • Whole Grain Pasta (any shape will do!)
  • Whole Wheat Tortillas

 

Canned & Jarred

  • Applesauce (look for unsweetened
  • Beans- Great Northern, Black, Navy, Kidney, Chickpeas- (look for low sodium)
  • Chicken (canned) Spice Jars
  • Corn (look for no salt added)
  • Green Chilies
  • Mandarin Oranges (look for unsweetened)
  • Peanut Butter (stay away from hydrogenated fats or added sugars on the ingredients list)
  • Pineapple (canned in own juice)
  • Salsa
  • Soup (look for low sodium)
  • Tomatoes (look for no salt added or low sodium)
  • Tomato Sauce (look for low sodium)
  • Tuna (packed in water)

 

Oils, Sauces, & Vinegars

  • Hot Sauce
  • Lemon Juice
  • Lime Juice
  • Mayonnaise
  • Mustard
  • Soy Sauce (look for low sodium)
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Vinegar- Balsamic, Rice

 

Refrigerated/Frozen

  • Chicken
  • Eggs
  • Fruit (look for no added sugar)
  • Vegetables -Corn, Peas, Broccoli, Green Beans, Spinach (any veggie will do!)

 

Herbs & SpicesSpices

  • Basil
  • Black Pepper
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Chili Powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Cumin
  • Garlic Powder (avoid garlic salt)
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Salt-Free Seasonings

 

Dried Foods

  • Beans (any variety)
  • Dried Fruits -Prunes, Apples, Apricots- (look for no added sugar)
  • Lentils- (Bonus! These cook faster than normal beans)
  • Nuts- Walnuts, Pecans, Peanuts, Almonds
  • Raisins
  • Seeds- Sunflower, Pumpkin
 
 

Recipes

Berry Oatmeal

  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • Frozen Berries (thawed) or Raisins
  • Topped with Nuts or Seeds
  • Sprinkle of Cinnamon

 

Tuna Salad

  • Tuna (packed in water & drained)
  • Mayonnaise or Plain Yogurt
  • Mustard
  • Black Pepper
  • Lemon Juice

Optional: Add in celery, onion & a hard-boiled egg if you have them!

 

Topped Crackers

  • Tuna Salad or just Tuna
  • Chicken Salad or just Chicken
  • Corn & Beans
  • Peanut Butter

Optional: Rice cakes can be used in place of crackers!

 

Chicken Stir-FryChicken Stirfry 

  • Cooked chicken (from frozen)
  • Frozen Mixed Veggies
  • Soy Sauce
  • Brown Rice
  • Garlic Powder
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Vegetable Oil

Smoothie

  • Frozen Fruit
  • Frozen Spinach
  • Peanut Butter
  • Water or Milk
  • Cinnamon

Optional: Add in old fashioned oats!

 

Veggie & Lentil Soup

  • Frozen Veggies- Corn, Onions, Peppers, Spinach, Carrots (any will do!)
  • Lentils
  • Vegetable Broth
  • Canned Low Sodium Tomatoes
  • Garlic Powder
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Cumin

Optional: Add in potatoes or shell-shaped pasta!

 

Traditional PastaPasta

  • Whole Grain Pasta
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Basil
  • Garlic Powder

Optional: Add in corn, beans or other veggies!

 

Trail Mix

  • Nuts- Walnuts, Pecans, Peanuts
  • Seeds- Sunflower, Pumpkin
  • Dried Fruits- Raisins, Apricots, Apples
  • Cereal

 

Cranberry Almond Chicken Salad

  • Canned Chicken
  • Mayonnaise or Plain Yogurt
  • Cranberries
  • Almonds or Pecans
  • Mustard
  • Garlic Powder
  • Black Pepper

Optional: Add in onion & celery or place in a wrap or on bread for a sandwich!

 

Spicy Frittata

  • Eggs
  • Frozen Veggies (heated)
  • Beans (any variety)
  • Chili Powder
  • Salsa
  • Hot Sauce

 

White Chicken Chili

  • Canned Chicken
  • Navy Beans or Great Northern
  • Chicken Broth
  • Green Chilies
  • Cumin
  • Oregano
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Garlic Powder
  • Hot Sauce

Optional: Add frozen veggies!

 

Burrito Bowl

  • Black Beans
  • Frozen Mixed Veggies (heated)
  • Brown Rice
  • Cumin
  • Salsa
  • Hot sauce

Optional: Add a Whole Wheat Tortilla to make into a burrito


 

Comments

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