Have you ever looked in your pantry only to find a cabinet full of items that just seem to be useless for creating an easy, healthy, and delicious weeknight meal? Have you wondered how to stock a healthy pantry that supports you? Well, consider this your one-stop shop for guiding you toward a well-stocked pantry that can easily be used for quick and delicious meals!
I truly believe that having a well-stocked pantry is one of the best ways to set yourself up for success. It allows you to have healthy ingredients at the ready-to-make delicious meals that support a healthy lifestyle for not only your new year’s goals but for the many years to come. It also helps to reduce stress which is something we all could use assistance with at times. I have also found having a well-stocked and supportive pantry helps to save time and money as well.
How to Stock a Healthy Pantry
Pantry staples are unique to each person. For me, I believe pantry staples include foods that can be stored in the pantry, fridge, and freezer that will stay fresh for a minimum of two weeks. However, I focus a lot of my pantry on foods that can last for around a month or more. Focus on items like beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds, and then pair these items with a whole grain to make them a nutritionally complete protein. Having these easy-to-store plant-based proteins allows you to have a variety of foods at the ready to create a balanced meal including protein, healthy fats, fiber-rich starches, and produce. Pantry staples are the main components of your meal that serve as a base to build your meals.
Step 1: Clean Out and Take Inventory
In order to properly stock your pantry up for success, you will need to clean it out. Not only should you purge all expired items, but I would advise that you take this time to physically clean the pantry, fridge, and freezer as well. I would recommend you browse the list below and see what is relevant to you/your family and your food preferences. Once you have browsed the list marking what you already have stocked and eliminating what isn’t relevant, you will be equipped with your shopping list.
Step 2: Purchase Your Pantry Staples
Take your list to the grocery store with you and start with what is reasonable for you. If you are able to, it can be beneficial to have several options to start out with, but it is often more reasonable to build up your pantry over time. You can generally find most of the pantry staples recommend below at your grocery store, but it can often be easier and cheaper to purchase online. Even just online shopping on Kroger, Aldi, Walmart, or the like can save you money with easy-to-use coupons and knowing how much your total is as you add items to your cart.
Healthy and Supportive Pantry Staples
Here is my list of pantry staples. With this said, please don’t feel as though you need to, or even should, purchase everything on this list. It is only here to guide you and serve as a resource. Start building up your pantry over the next month to several months and feel free to adjust as you go along. If you like something more tangible as I often do, here is a printable list.
- Flours (I usually have all-purpose, bread flour, and almond flour on hand)
- Oats/oat groats
- Brown rice/Rice
- Dried beans/canned beans
- Tomatoes (diced, roasted, paste, sauce)
- Stock or broth
- Herbal tea
- Apple cider vinegar
- Balsamic vinegar
- Brown mustard
- Hot sauce
- Soy sauce
- Dried fruit
- Tortilla chips
- Olive oil/extra virgin olive oil
- Avocado oil
- Canola oil
- Coconut oil
Nuts and Seeds
- Nut butter (peanut, almond, cashew, etc)
- Nuts (almond, walnut, pecan, cashew, pistachios, etc)
- Seeds (chia, flax, hemp, pumpkin, etc)
Herbs and Spices
- Salt and pepper
- Bay leaves
- Cayenne pepper
- Chili powder
- Crushed red pepper flakes
- Curry powder
- Garlic powder
- Italian seasoning
- Onion powder
- Maple syrup
- Baking Powder
- Cacao powder
- Chocolate chips
- Yogurt, I prefer greek yogurt
- Minced garlic
- Milk, plant or otherwise
- Fruit (berries, tropical, banana, avocado, etc)
- Fish or Shellfish
- Ground Turkey
- Veggie Burgers or Falafels
Produce (longer-lasting that is)
- Citrus (lemon, lime, orange)
- Sweet Potatoes
Time to Stock Your Pantry
I hope this pantry helps to support you live a happier and more wholesome lifestyle in the long run. Having items like these on hand has ensured that no matter the day there is something in the kitchen to make a quick and wholesome dinner. Once again if you are a person that like something tangible, here is a printable list.
I hope you have a happy and wholesome day!