Ever since we started to budget better and to work on a more frugal life, I have changed my grocery shopping. I wanted to buy items I could use in multiple recipes. So now I always have a few items on hand to make sure I can make a meal from scratch.
There are a couple of items I try to always have around, but these 10 are definitely here. Whenever I run out of them I restock them in a few days. It is just easy when you can always create a meal.
As Italian meal lovers, this is a definite must for us. We just love anything from the Italian kitchen. I try to buy pasta whenever I have some money left over in my weekly budget, or when it’s on sale. You can make nearly anything when you have this in the house. I have no particular type of pasta, but spaghetti and penne are nearly always here.
Combined with the pasta you have a meal. It’s nothing fancy (yet) but you can at least have a fairly healthy and nutritious meal on a budget when you have pasta and passata. Passata is basically tomato puree, but than in a sauce. It is just a basic tomato sauce without any additives. Best basic if you’d ask me.
Another favourite to add to my Italian type dishes. When I create a regular pasta, I usually add a can of diced tomatoes to the passata sauce. Just to add a little more texture to it and to make the sauce last longer.
Obviously you need rice in your pantry as well. If you don’t feel like pasta, you can always just have rice. Check out my Beans and Rice recipe to see an easy and frugal recipe with mainly items from this list! But I also have risotto in my pantry, which is also Italian.
My husbands favourite. He is just crazy about pesto and it a very nice and easy basic item. You can just have spaghetti, add a can of pesto (yes we add the entire thing), sprinkle some Parmesan cheese on top and have a meal. How easy can it be, right? I have also tried an amazing risotto with pesto the other day. I’ll definitely add the recipe to the blog someday.
This one goes against my ‘lover of animals’ spirit (I heard a lot of negative stories about the tuna and it’s extinction), but it is just such an amazing staple item and very frugal. Tuna can be used on a sandwich, in pasta or in a salad. I do try to buy the better version of the canned tuna. I decided to use it less in my meals to make sure I don’t use too much tuna.
Another must for my Beans and Rice and it is just a good way to add some sweetness to the meal and an extra bite. I have recently rediscovered corn and I love it now. So easy to add to multiple dishes!
Do I even have to mention which recipe this goed well in? Ha! It is just a great meal when we are out of a budget and still need dinner. And, when you add enough to the beans mixture you can use it twice. Once for just beans and rice and once as a filler in a wrap for example.
Onions seriously go into 95% of my dinners. They are just so easy to add to a dish and it gives you some extra vegetables that you hardly even notice. Plus, they are part of the 100 healthiest food in the world.
And the odd duck here is probably oats. But it is something I always have in the pantry. In Wintertime we have oatmeal for breakfast, usually with a banana and some cinnamon. In Summer time we have granola for breakfast. And obviously you need plenty of oats for both these breakfasts.
What are items you always keep in the pantry? Any important things I’ve missed? Let me know in the comments! I love to learn.