Today I’ve decided to share a little piece of my home with you all! My pantry. I know, it doesn’t sound too exciting but I’ve always believed if you keep good food in your house, you will eat good food. I typically try and limit junk food in our house and keep things on hand that are healthier to snack on and cook. Our pantry is no where near perfect, but I think it’s a good start. By having a well stocked pantry I can pretty much cook up anything at the drop of a hat, which in turn, keeps us from picking up take out or going out to eat.
To store food, I use baskets I picked up from Target. I also try and make sure every product has a home by using jars with reusable lids. By doing this, the food product stays fresh for longer, and eliminates wasted space. You all know how big some boxes can be and I cannot stand how much room they take up! The shelves are labeled by number for your convenience.
1.) Paper products and K-Cups. This top shelf is my least favorite. It’s actually really hard for me to get to so I don’t keep much there.
2.) Brown Basket: Oils- coconut oil, olive oil, tahini paste, and nut butters (I can never have too many jars of peanut butter). I roast a lot of vegetables so olive oil is amazing to have on hand. Coconut oil is used for granola and sauteing as well. Nut butters are non-perishable so I stock up when it’s on sale.
Tan Basket: Dry goods- this includes brown rice, whole wheat pastas (I have way too many types!), quinoa, and panko bread crumbs. There are also oats stored on the very far right hand side. Again, these are all non-perishable items and really easy to cook when I’m in a pinch for dinner. Oats are great for about everything. I use them in breakfast foods, like granola, pancakes, and homemade snack bars.
3.) From left to right- baking items. This includes baking soda, baking powder, salt, vanilla, dried fruits, chocolate chips, etc. I am always baking up something on the weekends. Whether it be breads or even an occasional sweet treat. The middle basket includes nuts, popcorn, flax seeds, & chia seeds. These are all wonderful extra ingredients to have on hand to make snack bars or trail mix. The far right basket contains flours- whole wheat, bread, and white(OMG! 😉 ) and more oats (seriously, it’s a problem). I make a lot of food from scratch, specifically pizza dough and breads, so I always make sure I have many types of flour in the pantry.
4. From left to right- vinegar, all the vinegars- red wine, apple cider, white, balsamic. Vinegar is so versatile; I use them in salad dressings and marinades all the time. I also keep unique oils in this bin as well. I have sesame oil as well as flavored olive oils. The middle basket contains spices. Yes, that whole entire basket is spices. I also have a spice rack on my counter. I cannot get enough. Spices elevate the flavor of so many bland and boring foods – I’m looking at you, chicken breast. I make my own taco seasoning every time we have tacos. By doing this, I’m avoiding a lot of added preservatives and excessive sodium. Oh and did I mention it’s cheaper?! (Tip: if you live in Bloomington, go to Sahara Mart. They have the cheapest prices in town!) Finally on the right, I store canned goods. I typically buy low sodium chicken or vegetable stocks, coconut milk, tomato paste, and beans. I also have chicken noodle soup on hand because you never know when you’re going to need that!
5. The bottom shelf and floor are typically for snack foods and breads. Mitch loves chips and salsa so I always have tortilla chips on hand as well as some whole wheat crackers. We also have protein powder, whole wheat tortillas, and whole wheat breads. This shelf really changes depending on the week and what’s on the menu. The floor (not pictured) stores sparkling water, onions, and potatoes in respective baskets or containers.
Now that I’ve I’ve shared our pantry with you, I’ve gotta know, what are some of your “must have” food items in your pantry?