A well-stocked pantry will allow you to feed your family healthy meals and snacks, limit the last minute unhealthy fast food meals, and prepare you for emergency situations that arise. These tips and pantry staple recipes will help you stock your pantry and prepare for emergencies.
I live in Florida where we prepare for Hurricanes each year. If you live in an area where hurricanes aren’t a concern, chances are there are other natural disasters to prepare for. As we now are dealing with COVID-19 worldwide, it is even more evident that a well-stocked pantry is an asset to prepare for anything that may come along.
Healthy Pantry Staples
Stock your pantry with these whole food staples allows you to prepare healthy meals and snacks while eliminating or limiting processed foods even in emergency situations. I find it also handy to keep these staples that don’t require any refrigeration on hand year-round, so I know I will always have healthy food on hand.
- Oats (Old Fashioned or Steel Cut)
- Legumes (Dried or Canned) – Black, Canali, garbanzo, garbanzo, and pinto beans are great options, as well as lentils.
- Canned Salmon, Tuna and Chicken
- Canned Tomatoes
- Broth or Stock
- Evaporated or Coconut Milk
- Nuts – Almonds, pecans, and walnuts are some great options. They are not only good for baking but also healthy snacks and add-ins for oatmeal.
- Nut Butters
- Dried Fruit – Apricots, cherries, cranberries, and raisins make healthy snacks and oatmeal add-ins, along with some nuts.
- Dried Spices
NOTE: I typically shy away from canned food since many cans contain BPA in the can liners. I feel that stocking food for an emergency is an exception and also look for cans without BPA (Amy’s and Eden Foods are two possible brands). Many foods are also available in cartons, such as tomatoes and broth.
Healthy Pantry Staple Recipes
When you stock your pantry with these staples, you’ll be able to cook healthy meals for your family, even without refrigeration.
Breakfast Pantry Recipes
- Overnight Steel Cut Oats from Beyond the Chicken Coop – Instant Pot Buckwheat Porridge is healthy, affordable comfort food — a gluten-free alternative to oatmeal for a nourishing hot breakfast. (Pictured)
- No Added Sugar Granola from Mission to Save – No Added Sugar Homemade Granola Recipe
- Peanut Butter and Honey Granola from The Toasty Kitchen – Crunchy, filling, and rich with peanut butter flavor. Top your favorite yogurt with this easy to make granola, or eat it by the handful.
- Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal from Recipe This – How to make Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal in your electric pressure cooker. If you have ever wanted to make instant pot steel-cut oatmeal, or as you might call it instant pot steel cut oats, well let me tell you now its one of the easiest things you could possibly cook in your instant pot.
- Best Healthy Homemade Granola from Pinch of Wellness – Healthy, homemade granola uses all pantry staples that you already have at home! This snack recipe is easy, healthy, and family-friendly!
- Vegan Applesauce Muffins from A Sweet Alternative – These vegan applesauce muffins are easy to make and perfect for breakfast or as a snack. They’re also gluten-free and refined sugar-free.
Pasta Pantry Recipes
- Slow Cooker Marinara Sauce from Cooks Recipe Collection – Easy Homemade Marinara Sauce made in a slow cooker from all pantry staples. (Pictured)
- Pesto Chicken Pasta from The Toasty Kitchen – Easy, 20-minute meal that’s made with just five shelf-stable ingredients. Bow tie pasta and chicken are coated in a rich and flavorful pesto sauce. – Pesto Chicken Pasta (5 ingredients)
- Best Instant Pot Penne Pomodoro Recipe from The Belly Rules the Mind – Penne Pomodoro is an easy pasta recipe that will please everyone in your family. Making this vegetarian pasta dish in the Instant Pot turns this meal into an easy one-pot wonder, perfect for the busiest of weeknights or even for kids’ lunchbox.
- One Pot Crab Pasta Recipe from Supergolden Bakes – This delicious crab pasta is cooked all in one pot – pasta and all – and is ready in 15 minutes! Perfect for a quick meal at any time of the week.
- Garganelli Pasta with Tuna Bolognese from The Pasta Project – This super simple but yummy 3 ingredient pasta with tuna recipe from Bologna is probably the easiest Italian pasta recipe I know. It can be made with just 3 pantry staples, canned tuna, tinned tomatoes, and an onion!
- Spaghetti Aglio e Olio from The Toasty Kitchen – Spaghetti Aglio e Olio is a classic Italian dish known for its simplicity and ease. Fresh garlic is sauteed in olive oil, then tossed with spaghetti, red pepper flakes, and parsley.
- Spaghetti alla puttanesca from Hint of Healthy – Spaghetti alla puttanesca is an Italian classic that is traditionally made with pantry staples only. A quick and easy recipe with amazing flavor!
- Easy and Quick Tuna Pasta from Romina’s Little Corner – This easy and quick tuna pasta takes minimal effort and time and uses pantry staples (by substituting canned tomatoes and dried spices for fresh) to deliver a whole lot of flavor.
- 15-Minute Sesame Noodles from Busy Cooks – These sesame noodles can be ready to serve in 15 minutes, yes that’s not a typo! Quick as ever, versatile and flavorful, this quick noodle dish is a huge hit even with kids!
Dinner Pantry Recipes Featuring Beans
- Instant Pot Cuban Black Beans (No Soak) from Cooks Recipe Collection – Traditional Cuban Black Beans Recipe made conveniently and time-saving by using the Instant Pot. Go from dry beans to table in less than an hour, with this no soak recipe, with only pantry ingredients.(Pictured)
- Instant Pot Refried Beans from Busy Cooks – Highly customizable, this Instant Pot refried beans are a total game-changer. In less than an hour and 15 minutes, you’ll get the most flavorful refried beans tailored exactly to your taste.
- Chickpea and Potato Curry from Little Sunny Kitchen – Caribbean chickpea and potato curry or chana aloo masala is a healthy vegan curry typically served over rice. It’s a family-friendly recipe, so easy to make, and ready in under half an hour! Made pantry friendly by leaving out the spinach and using dried parsley instead of fresh.
- Lazy Falafel from Rhian’s Recipes – This Lazy Falafel is super easy to make, will take up less than 30 minutes of your time, and tastes every bit as delicious as the traditional version! Vegan and gluten-free.
- Moroccan-Inspired Lentil and Brown Rice Casserole from Bear Plate – This Moroccan inspired rice dish is easy to prepare and loaded with flavor!
- Chana Masala (Curried Chickpeas) and Sautéed Greens from Cass Clay Cooking – Delicious and hearty, this vegan Indian classic is a dish that is a crowd-pleaser. Use canned tomato and serve with rice and you have a pantry friendly dish.
- Sticky Sesame Chickpea Recipe from Eat with Clarity – Easy, flavorful, and packed with plant protein, these sesame chickpeas are a vegan chickpea recipe that is a quick and delicious dinner the whole family will love. It’s ready in just 15 minutes and is great for meal prep for the week. Plus, it’s totally kid-approved!
- Coconut Red Beans & Rice from The Food Blog – Delicious Jamaican flavors of Coconut Red Beans & Rice can simmer in the slow cooker for a delectable meal in itself, or, a great side dish.
- Couscous Salad with Dried Fruit, Chickpeas and Mint from Entertaining with Beth – This Couscous Salad with Chickpeas is a great pantry classic that uses shelf-stable couscous, dried fruits, nuts, and canned chickpeas. No fresh mint? Use dried mint or dried parsley instead!
- Chickpea Tikka Masala from Live Eat Learn – This Chickpea Tikka Masala recipe is an easy dinner to whip up when the Indian food cravings hit (plus, it’s vegan!)
Soup and Chili Pantry Recipes
- Italian White Bean Soup from The Clever Meal – Cooking this flavor-packed white bean soup is a no brainer, it takes just a few basic ingredients like cannellini beans, garlic and olive oil, some of the cheapest cupboard staples.
- Easy Split Pea Soup from What a Girl Eats – This split pea soup is the perfect meal when you’re down to your last few pantry items.
- Tomato Basil Soup With Goat Cheese from What a Girl Eats – Low on fresh food items? Tomato Basil Soup uses canned or jarred tomatoes. If you don’t have access to cheese, omit it for a simpler version. Substitute evaporated milk if fresh milk is not available.
- 5 Minute Vegan Tomato Soup from Fab Food 4 All – 5 Minute Vegan Tomato Soup is a deliciously spicy and creamy soup. The spice comes from Tikka Masala spice paste and the creaminess from coconut milk powder.
- Easy Mexican Bean Soup from Veggie Desserts – This easy vegan Mexican Bean Soup is a hearty bowl full of flavor. It’s rammed with beans and veggies, and is deliciously spiced and warming. The best thing is you can make this recipe in just 15 minutes with pantry ingredients.
- Spicy Vegetarian Chili from Meal Prep Ninja – How to Make the Best Vegetarian Chili in the Slow Cooker. This is a very easy slow cooker vegetarian chili recipe with a slight kick of heat. While all the ingredients are basic, the flavor is anything but.
- Instant Pot Vegan Chipotle Chili from Flavor and Savour – You won’t miss the meat in this Instant Pot Vegan Chipotle Chili! Load it up with your favorite toppings and enjoy a hearty bowl, or stuff it in a sweet potato. Easy instructions for slow cooker and stovetop, too. This easy recipe uses pantry items like canned beans, canned tomatoes, and lentils.
- Easy Pumpkin Soup from Canned Pumpkin from Salt and Lavender – This vegan pumpkin soup from canned pumpkin is fast, easy, and comforting! Coconut milk makes it extra silky and delicious.
- Moroccan Red Lentil Soup from A Cedar Spoon – Moroccan Red Lentil Soup is a comforting soup recipe. The warm, rich spices of cinnamon, coriander, cumin, paprika, and turmeric mix together perfectly to create a flavorful soup.
Pantry Snack Recipes
- Green Split Pea Hummus Recipe from Yum Vegan Lunch Ideas – This homemade split pea hummus is creamy, delicious, and a fun twist on regular hummus. Using dried split peas as the base, it’s cheap to create and chock full of nutrients.
- Peanut Butter Protein Balls from Texanerin – These 6-ingredient peanut butter protein balls only take a few minutes to throw together and are full of healthful ingredients! Naturally gluten-free, whole grain, dairy-free and with a vegan option.
- No-Bake Energy Bites from Pink Fortitude – These no-bake energy bites are quick and easy to make and are super healthy and nutritious for sustained energy. Perfect as a complement to breakfast, or as a snack during the day. Oh… and they taste something close to a no-bake cookie or a Lara Bar.
- Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Balls from Happy Kitchen – Naturally sweet, loaded with energy, these vegan chocolate peanut butter energy balls are delicious, healthy, and perfect for an after-school snack, or whenever you’re needing a bit of a “pick-me-up” to your day. They are the perfect grab and go treat for any busy family.
- Oven-Roasted Chickpeas from Aline Made – Crunchy oven-roasted chickpeas marinated with olive oil and a blend of delicious spices! The best healthy snack, salad topping, or wrap filling ever!
- Savory Pumpkin Hummus from Peters Food Adventures – Easy Pumpkin Hummus is a healthy appetizer. Made in minutes, with pumpkin, chickpeas, garlic, and rosemary. A vegan savory dip that everyone will enjoy.
- Crispy Crunchy Chickpea and Oat Crackers from My Kids Lick the Bowl – A very easy cracker recipe based on canned chickpeas, rolled oats, and olive oil. Absolutely delicious and crunchy.
Bread Pantry Recipes
- Whole Wheat Cheddar Cheese Beer Bread from Cooks Recipe Collection – This beer bread recipe is quick and easy to mix up the ingredients, add the beer (for the rising effects – no yeast needed) and bake; no kneading or rising time required. By leaving out the cheese and butter, this recipe will use only pantry ingredients.
- Easy Rustic Olive Bread from Dani’s Cookings – This Easy Rustic Olive Bread is made with few simple ingredients and little effort but is really tasty!
- Panini Bread Recipe from The Clever Meal – Make your amazing bread at home, it will make your kitchen smell like an Italian bakery! It’s crusty, irresistible, super easy to make, and ready in 1 hour flat.
- Homemade 100% Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas from Cooks Recipe Collection – These whole wheat flour tortillas are not only easy to make (even easier with the help of my Kitchen Aid mixer) but also soft and delicious.
Desert Pantry Recipes
- Chocolate Wacky Cake from The Good Hearted Woman – Chocolate Wacky Cake is the easiest scratch cake you will ever make! (No eggs, no milk, no butter, no clean-up.) Made exclusively with pantry staples, this surprisingly moist, delicious snack cake mixes up in a jiffy, right in the pan!