The Essential Pantry List to End All Pantry Lists

I wrote a post on an old blog about an essential pantry list, this list has been growing and changing since 2013. Today was the first time I looked at it since late 2014.

Man,  here is the link to the original post

Even though my platform and aesthetic have changed, these basics have not! Check out this list with my new and exciting updates!


  1. Herbs and spices: The temptation to buy everything they sell can be REAL, but there is not a need for that. Especially since you do not want to keep them for longer than a year.  Just make note of what you end up replacing the most often. Sea salt, kosher salt, black pepper, whole black peppercorns, thyme, oregano, basil, cumin, cinnamon, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, Goya Sazon are some that I keep on hand and use frequently.

  2. Flours: all purpose, whole wheat

  3. Sugars: granulated and brown sugar

  4. Vanilla Extract

  5. Evaporated Milk: you never know when you will not want to run out to the store to pick up the milk that you forgot the other 3473984 previous times you were there. UPDATE: I do not consume as much dairy these days, so I now keep coconut milk stocked

  6. Dry Pastas: buy your favorite sizes and shapes

  7. Grains: quinoa, rice UPDATE: fuck quinoa, I tried to like it, it’s gross. But if you like that flavor it is a good grain to have on hand.

  8. Baking soda, baking powder, corn starch

  9. Oils: olive oil, some sort of inexpensive vegetable oil, and sesame oil.  UPDATE: After a stint with Whole 30 in 2016 I now keep avocado oil in the house, a high smoke point neutral oil.

  10. Soy sauce, or coconut aminos if you are gluten/soy free.

  11. Chicken stock/Veggie Stock/Bouillon

  12. Honey

  13. Hot Sauce: I love Sriracha but I also keep a bottle of Texas Pete or Franks hot sauce on hand just in case. UPDATE: Sriracha and I have gone our separate ways, I now fucks with Cholula heavy these days.

  14. Dijon mustard: never underestimate the power that this condiment has to transform a bland dish into something gourmet, keep it on hand and once opened it lasts for months in the fridge.

  15. Vinegars: balsamic, apple cider, sherry, white, and red wine are the ones I get the most use out of but if you do not have a strong affinity for vinegar then you can keep it to the basics of just white and apple cider.

  16. Tomatoes: diced, crushed, tomato sauce, and tomato paste are all good things to keep on hand for a last minute sauce or soup base.

  17. Beans: canned and dry (black, pinto, white, garbanzo)

  18. Jars of your favorite pasta sauce

  19. Peanut Butter

  20. Nuts: whatever your favorites are, they are great for snacking and baking

  21. Oatmeal: great for a cold weather breakfast, as a binder in your meatloaf, or for baking

  22. Maple syrup: A little on the expensive side to buy the real deal, but the flavor is worth it

Mary ShawComment