It’s a lot easier to start cooking if you already have some basic food items in the house.
My Food Cupboard
Here’s a list of the (probably essential) non-perishable foods that will happily sit in your food cupboard (or pantry) until you are ready to use them.
- Cooking oil (vegetable or canola)
- Olive oil
- Salad dressing (pick your favorite)
- Pastas and Rice
- Spaghetti and / or fun-shaped pasta
- White Rice
- Brown Rice
- Canned Foods
- Beans-kidney, pinto, black, navy, etc. Used for cooking or adding to salads.
- Tuna Fish
- Stewed Tomatoes (2 cans)
- Spaghetti/pasta sauce
- Breakfast Cereal
- White sugar
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
My Spice Cupboard
You will want to personalize this list with things like coffee, tea, sodas, etc.
I am intentionally leaving out the entire category of baking foods (like flour, brown sugar, confectioner’s sugar, coco powder and so on). You can begin assembling those ingredients when you begin baking from scratch. (Yes, that will happen someday too!)
When stocking up, I strongly recommend bringing a written list of what you need to the grocery store. Otherwise you not only forget what is on the list but you end up spending more than you might with a list!
When given a choice in size, be realistic. I rarely buy “giant family size” of anything, since my household has only two people and it takes a long time for us to get through a small jar of mayonnaise. Granted, the larger size is a better value, but not if it ends up being thrown out because it has passed its “use-by” date. I would rather buy the smaller size and when it runs out, buy a fresh jar.
Anything else YOU would consider a “must have” in your pantry?
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