Saturday, October 8, 2011

{31 Days} Stocking your pantry: Canned goods, chocolates and other yummies

After this last week, your pantry should be just about ready to go! 

Today, we’re wrapping up the odds and ends we have in our pantry.  Tomorrow, we’ll peek in the fridge, and starting Monday, we’ll embark on using these staples to make yummy dishes. 

Pasta & Other Grains

Our pantry is filled with whole wheat pasta – penne, rigatoni, linguine, spaghetti, and lasagna noodles.  We also have tri-colored rotini and a few white pastas (e.g., small shells – great for soups). 

As far as rice goes, we have brown rice and wild rice.  We have both standard-cook brown rice and minute brown rice.

We also have barley – which is great for soups.  We only have the quick cooking barley on hand, but we use it often. 

We have popcorn from Orville Redenbacher – perfect for an afternoon snack.  The only bread crumbs we have other than our own are Panko bread crumbs.  These are a wonderful bread crumb; fine and crispy they make a delicious crust on Parmesan crusted chicken. 

Canned Good Basics

We don’t have too many canned goods around in our house, but we do have a few staples.  We purchase these from Costco as their price per can is the best.  These include: tomato paste, tomato sauce, diced & stewed tomatoes, beans (black and great white northern are our staples), occasionally we’ll have canned mushrooms too as a back up to fresh. 

While we love making our own stock, but I like to have some on hand at all times.  We’ve found Roundy’s Organic chicken stock as well as the Kirkland Organic brand to be our favorites.  Both of these are low-sodium options too. 

The challenge I’ve found with buying organic products – is the salt content! 

While many of the non-organic products “no-salt-added” options, most organic products do not!  At this point, it’s a real tough call for me.  I have found, however, that the diced tomatoes from Del Monte have a very low sodium content.  For now, we’ve gone to using organic products and have compensated for the high sodium values by not adding any salt to our tomato-based dishes.  How do you handle this?

Chocolate & Other Yummies

These are my favorite pantry “other”.  We have dark chocolate cocoa powder and dark chocolate chips on hand at all times.  When they go on sale, we stock up.  Our go-to price for chocolate chips is $1.88 … when that happens, we buy 12-15 bags.  That lasts us until that $1.88 sale comes back again 6-8 months later. 

We also have evaporated milk and sweetened condensed milk on hand.  I have made my own of these recipes, but sometimes it’s just nice to have a can on hand. 

What are your “others” in your pantry?


  1. Other pantry staples: canned beans (pinto, black, kidney, red, white, etc), dried peas and beans, various rices (bought in bulk from the health foods store and stored in mason jars), corn meal (various grinds from standard corn bread corn meal to polenta grind), oatmeal (always old fashioned). Baking stuff (like you!) is always stocked, too :) I also keep lots of different Asian sauces and noodles on hand for quick meals.

    As far as the tomatoes goes I just get the tomatoes on sale (diced, jalapeno added, stewed and whole) and I don't stress the sodium content too much. When my garden produces I can my own tomatoes and they're salt free. There's always at least 10 cans of tomato products on hand at any given time here LOL :)

    Most of your pantry staples are my staples too :) The sign of a good from scratch cook as well as a blogger, right?

  2. Just wanted to let you know that I am loving your stocking the pantry posts. It's helping me double check what we usually keep on hand!

  3. Living in a small town, I struggle to even find organic products and then they tend to be very expensive. (We load up at Trader Joe's when we are near.) The brand I have found locally occasionally will have a $1 off 2 coupon printed on the cans. It is Muir Glen Organic. They do offer a No Salt Added variety of their tomatoes. That is the one I always get.

  4. I'm loving this series! I haven't had time to comment much, but I've been reading every post! Keep up the great work!!

  5. I dont know if youve mentioned it but you should keep some powdered milk on hand. if youre in a pinch you can make your own evaporated and sweetened condensed milk.

    check it out:

  6. For tomatoes, I rarely buy cans. We have a huge garden and when we get tomatoes we freeze them. Whenever a recipe calls for canned tomatoes I use the frozen ones. Also, we buy a huge bag of beans and make our own pinto beans and black beans. It takes a lot of work, but we try to as much as we can organically too! Always love your site. This is a great series.

  7. I feel like I need to save all of these {31 days} in a special file for when I am a homemaker/wife in the future! So much information!

    I also like how you know what good prices are on food and you stock up...this is an area I need to work on! Maybe you could make a list of good prices on certain staples that you stock up on? :-)


Thanks for stopping by! I'd love to hear from you; especially how you're finding JOY in your kitchen.

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