Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Must Have's in Your Pantry

Ever have one of those nights where you stand in front of your pantry and fridge and stare at lots of food, but have nothing to cook? Yeah, me too! I've found that if I keep these ten (I'm going to try to keep it to 10) things in my pantry, I can always figure out something for supper. 

Pantry Necessities
1. Dried Pasta and rice: you can always whip up spaghetti or chicken and rice.

2. Bread crumbs: breading your chicken or fish before cooking takes a normal meal and makes it new!

3. Dried Spices, Herbs, and Spice blends of your choice (My favorites: Cumin, Oregano, Taco seasoning, Garlic powder, onion powder)

4. Canned diced tomatoes: for homemade spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, soup, etc.

5. Canned beans (black, great northern, pinto, kidney): add these to soups and pastas for extra protein

6.Chicken stock: You can add to soups or use to make sauces

7. Canned salmon: Salmon patties (cakes) are such an easy go-to meal!

8. Your favorite spaghetti sauce: for obvious reasons!

9. Frozen vegetables- okay, this isn't in your pantry, but it is a must have. Frozen vegetables are actually more nutritious than fresh (especially in the winter), because they are frozen shortly after they are harvested. They don't have time to lose any vitamins! And frozen are healthier than canned, because they don't have the added salt. Broccoli, green beans, corn, carrots, etc. all make easy (and healthy) side dishes.

10. Baking usuals- flour, baking soda, baking powder, cornmeal, white sugar, and brown sugar.

Along with these ingredients, I like to have meat ready in the freezer. Some of the best kinds that I have are chicken breasts, premarinated pork or turkey tenderloin, ground beef, and boneless porkchops. 

Here's to never not knowing what's for supper again!